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Chair resigns to build 'constructive' relationship with Prue Taylor

Tuesday 27 Nov 2012 5:43 p.m.

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By Annabelle Tukia

The chairman of the Board of Trustees at Christchurch Girls’ High School has resigned.

It follows the interim reinstatement of the school's principal, Prue Taylor, who was sacked by the board a fortnight ago.

Frustrated parents last night addressed a Board of Trustees meeting at Christchurch Girls' High. The group were calling for members of the board who can't work with Ms Taylor to resign, including its chair, James Margaritis. Today, they got some of the news they wanted.

“James has actually stood down as chairman, but he will remain on the board until the board elections that are in May next year,” says board spokesperson Tim Priddy.

Last week, the Employment Relations Authority ruled the board's dismissal of Ms Taylor was "procedurally and possibly substantively unjustified”.

Mr Priddy says Mr Maragritis' resignation isn't an admission the board got it wrong, but will make Ms Taylor's interim reinstatement smoother.

“It gives an opportunity for some of that tension to be removed for us to work through in a more constructive and positive relationship,” says Mr Priddy, “and so I respect James for doing that.”

Mark Smith addressed the board last night on behalf of about 70 parents. He says news that Mr Margaritis has stepped down as chair is a step forward.

“If this is a signal from the board that they are restructuring themselves with a view to working cooperatively with Mrs Taylor when she returns to work, than I welcome that restructuring,” says Dr Smith.

A full employment hearing is set down for February next year.

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