December 4, 2019

Kia ora koutou katoa,

My name is James Murray and I am extremely honoured and humbled to have been appointed as your new principal, starting at the beginning of 2020.

I am married to Karla and we are the very proud parents of 4 boys; Callum (14), Hamish (12), Vaughan (10), Lachlan (9). They are very excited about their move to Tauranga, as the 3 older boys were born in the sunny Bay. I was raised in Wellington, and as a family, we are very much looking forward to coming 
ack to Tauranga and enjoying all the wonderful outdoor opportunities it provides.

Having previously taught at St. Mary’s Catholic School Tauranga, upon my arrival back from overseas, I know that St. Mary’s is a high performing, vibrant learning environment, that is absolutely dedicated to providing holistic Catholic education our children require.

I wish to acknowledge the previous and current work of the school, the Board of Trustees, school leadership team, teaching and support staff, and the school community for the strong leadership, pastoral care and quality teaching that St. Mary’s has offered and
continues to provide. It remains most important that we acknowledge the ethnicities and cultures that are ‘our people, in our place’!

I come to you from St. Joseph’s Fairfield, in Hamilton, where I have been Principal since October 2012. Before that appointment I was Principal of St. Mary’s Gisborne for 3 years. I have a strong commitment to Catholic education and my own personal faith comes from a strong Catholic upbringing. As my family and I make the transition to St. Mary's Tauranga, I am aware of the anticipation of a new Principal arriving. I want to celebrate with everyone, all the wonderful opportunities that St. Mary’s provides, and work strategically with all stakeholders to continue to develop our wonderful children in their faith and learning.

Communication is an integral part of leading a school, and this is something our team will continue to work at to keep you well informed. I also believe that working collaboratively is the best way to innovate new ideas and solve problems together. The partnerships we create, that are focussed on the best outcomes for children, will come from our strong home-school relationship.

Being part of a community is exceptionally important to me and my family. I am a firm believer in the need to establish and maintain strong relationships and partnerships with all stakeholders in the St. Mary’s community. The St. Mary’s School community and Board of Trustees can expect me to consistently act in the best interests of our learners, staff and community. I will dedicate myself to making sure I am enthusiastic, innovative, and a compassionate leader, who will serve this community with passion and integrity. 

I am excited at the journey and what lies ahead for all of us. I look forward to getting to know the students, staff, the community and Parish of St. Mary’s.

Ngā manaakitanga 

James Murray