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Friendship - Respect - Success

School Board

The role of School Board is one of setting the long-term future for the school and maintaining oversight of the implementation of the school's strategic Business Plan. It is not about running the school but rather about providing additional expertise to help the school achieve the best outcomes for all students. The School Board is comprised of the School Principal, elected parent and teacher representatives as well as appointed community members.

Further details about the School Board are outlined in the documents below:

If you wish to discuss any board related issues, please contact the board chair Tanya Sim at tanya.sim@blockbranding.com.

Tanya Sim - Board Chair
Parent Representative 2015 - 2017

Tanya Sim

I am the mum of Leila and Fraser Braddock and I have been a member of the School Board since last year.

I am the co-founder and managing director of Block Branding, a brand consultancy - in my role I set the business' strategic direction, manage the finances, operations, client relationships and HR for a team of twelve. My husband is also my business partner. Through my business, we have advised many training and education providers including Curtin University, Challenger Institute and PLC.

Voluntary roles I have held include former Deputy Chair, Secretary and board member of the parent-run Leederville Early Childhood Centre, board member of the arts organisation Mark Howlett Foundation, former board member of Artery (the young Friends of the Art Gallery of WA). I am a Smith Family mentor, and have mentored many high school and university age students through my business.

Over the last few years I have been a recipient of a 40 Under 40 award for entrepreneurship and was a finalist in Telstra's Businesswoman of the Year awards.

I believe that effective management should always stand on the highest ethical foundations and that our school should continue to strive to promote good citizenship alongside academic excellence.

Russell Kingdom
Parent Representative 2015 - 2017

Russell Kingdom

I have a son in Year 2 and a younger son who is three years old - eager to join his big brother at Highgate Primary School. My wife Helen and I have lived in the Highgate area since 2004 and are committed to seeing the very best for our inner city community and our school - which plays a central role in our community activities.

As a community school with its own Board, Highgate PS enjoys considerable independence as well as the benefits of being part of the public school system. I am delighted to be a parent representative on the School Board and hope to add to the existing strengths of the management team in assisting the school grow whilst retaining its strong reputation as a place of caring and learning.

With a growing student intake and increasing pressure on existing school assets and infrastructure, I believe that my professional skills would be put to good use on the Board as our wonderful school moves forward into the future.

Susan Gontaszewski 
Parent Representative 2015 - 2017

Susan Gontaszewski

I am a Highgate Primary alumna and have lived in the local area all my life. I have two daughters who are enjoying Kindy and Year 1. I have been involved with the P&C since 2014 and currently manage the P&C Facebook page.

I work part time in Public Health, as a senior policy officer, with a focus on policy and process development, regulation, governance and information management. My professional experience, connection to the local area and background as a former student give me a strong basis from which to make a positive contribution to the Board, representing parents, families and the school community.

Jan West
Teacher Representative 2015 - 2017

Jan West

My name is Jan West and I have worked at Highgate Primary for 13 years in various roles across mainstream and in the Intensive English Centre. In addition, I have worked as an early childhood visiting teacher at Swan District Office, an English as an Additional Language/Dialect Consultant (EAL/D) at the Education Department and twice as a parent representative on the school council and P&C at Newborough Primary School. Through these varied roles I have gained valuable knowledge, skills and understandings from the classroom level through to whole system policies and procedures which I believe enables me to effectively represent staff as a member of the school board. As Highgate enters a new phase in its long history, I welcome the opportunity to work with other staff, parents and the community to build teacher capacity, continue to improve facilities and provide all students the opportunity to achieve their potential.

Danika Smith
Teacher Representative 2015 - 2017

My name is Danika Smith and I have taught at Highgate Primary School in mainstream and Intensive English Centre classes since 2006. I have also taught in rural WA schools and overseas in the United Kingdom. From this range of experiences I have developed my skills, knowledge and understandings around best teaching practice which I share with my colleagues to enhance the learning outcomes for all students at Highgate Primary School. As a teacher representative, I am looking forward to working collaboratively with the School Board to set, work towards and realise the goals and vision for our unique and wonderful school.

Matthew Benter
Parent Representative 2015 - 2017

Matthew Benter

When my son joined Highgate Primary School at the start of grade 1, our family was immediately impressed by the inclusive, welcoming and positive nature of the school. Much of the success was clearly attributable to the high level of interest and participation in the school community by staff, parents and other stakeholders. I felt privileged to join the School Board when the opportunity arose in late 2015.
I have been a lawyer for over 20 years, with broad experience in both dispute resolution and commercial contracting. As a member of the School Board, I seek at all times to apply my knowledge and experience to assist in the Board's critical strategic functions.