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The MBS Board of Trustees is elected every 3 years.
They take on the governance of the school to create a successful school.


Mark Keenan / Principal


I have been principal at MBS since the beginning of 2015. Prior to this I was a teacher and leader at a number of Auckland schools as well as overseas. I am married to Kate and have 2 wonderful daughters Anna and Ruby.
At MBS I want every child to achieve to their potential and be engaged, confident and resilient learners. A key to this is a strong professional development programme for our teachers and developing a meaningful future focused school curriculum. I believe children learn best when there is a strong home/school partnership.
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María Lamberto Calvo


I have been looking after the Property Portfolio since my election to the BOT in July 2016. While I will be still involved with the property portfolio, this year I have the privilege to be the Chairperson and to work with Vonja Young as a Deputy Chairperson and a motivated Board which has an amazing set of skills. This will ensure we support the school and its teachers to reach the goals set in the strategic plan. I have also picked up the portfolio of Iwi liaison, so I will be working to strengthen the relationship between the school and our local Iwi, Ngai tai ki Tamaki, as mana whenua. We will be working hard to give our students a better understanding of the culture and the land we sit on.

I currently have my 3 children at the school and they are loving it. I did my University studies in Spain graduating with a degree in Philosophy and Education and a teaching diploma. I moved to New Zealand in 1997 and started my teaching career in Papakura. I have been actively involved in Education since then and I am passionate about getting the very best out of students. I have been involved in assessment and curriculum development for the last 12 years. I am currently working for NZQA and the Ministry of Education in a variety of roles. I also work as Head of Languages at King’s College.  

I will strive to continue to use my expertise in Education to help the school continue to lift its profile and to help students get ready to face the challenges they will encounter at secondary school and beyond. I believe the whole community must be part of the education of our youth and parents/whanau and caregivers should be an integral part of this process. I am also looking forward to working with Mark Keenan and the rest of the BOT to achieve this.

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Robyn Krawitz

Staff Representative

I have been a teacher at Maraetai Beach School for the past 3 years, first in the intermediate school and now as the Learning Support Coordinator. My husband, Jason, and I moved to Maraetai in 2017 and have been loving life on the coast ever since. It really is my home away from home and I love our little slice of paradise. We have a little “Safri-Kiwi” boy named Ethan who is a delight to his family both near and far.

I have two degrees, one in Psychology and one in Teaching. I have been teaching for the past 12 years in both South Africa and New Zealand. I am a firm believer that every single child can achieve and be successful in their learning in their own right when they are given the help and support which they need to achieve to their best of their individual potential. I am excited to be part of the BoT and helping to shape the future of our fantastic school.

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Simone Beesley

Parent Trustee 

Ko Simone Beesley tōku ingoa  

Nō Scotland ōku tīpuna 

Kei te noto au ki Beachlands  

I am proud to represent the school community on the Maraetai Beach School Board. I am  responsible for the recently created Community Engagement Portfolio and work closely with the  Chairperson, our Principal Mark Keenan and the other elected members to ensure the best possible  outcomes for all students within our kura.  

I have a long connection with the Pohutukawa Coast. I grew up in Beachlands, attended Howick  College and went on to study Engineering in Auckland.  

I worked in NZ before moving to the United Kingdom with my husband, living in West Sussex and  then in London for just under four years.  

Our return from the UK to New Zealand was timed perfectly for a summer of swimming, kayak  fishing, weekend walks at Duder Regional Park and picnics at Omana. So the decision was made to  settle here and raise our family in what we regard as the best place to live in Auckland.  

At present I work as an Assistant Teacher at the Maraetai Beachlands Kindergarten. In this role I am  fortunate to meet a large number of local families, many of who transition from Kindergarten on to  Maraetai Beach School.  

I currently have a daughter in the Middle School and my son is in the Junior School. I believe that  one of our greatest assets here on the Pohutukawa Coast is community. I encourage parents and  families to embrace any opportunity available to engage with the school, volunteer, assist on a  school trip or attend a school camp. Not only will you learn more about the school and your child’s  learning journey but you are guaranteed to have fun and make some amazing memories along the  way.  

If I have not yet met you, please say hello.  


Simon MacKechnie

Parent Trustee  

I joined the Board of Trustees at Maraetai Beach School in June 2019 and hold the Finance Portfolio. 

I’m a Chartered Accountant by profession with a depth of work experience in senior finance roles here in Auckland, and previously in Christchurch, Sydney, New York and London. My current role at Mercury Energy is within the Digital Services (ICT) Leadership team. 

I am married with two children, in our Senior and Intermediate school, and have loved being part of our community since 2014.  As a family with a blend of NZ and South African ties, we love the Pohutukawa Coast and enjoy the beauty and outdoor activities it offers. I’m active in the community, currently as a Trustee at Te Puru Community Charitable Trust and coaching Touch Rugby over summer, having previously coached rugby for 4 years. 

I’m honoured to have been selected as a Parent Trustee and look forward to contributing to help MBS & all our kids thrive!  


Damian Powley

Parent Trustee

Living in Maraetai for 12 years, raising three children who are all growing up and attending Maraetai  Beach School, I often have to pinch myself for how lucky we are. I think our children have an amazing array of opportunities right on their doorstep, being active members engaged in their community. Maraetai Beach School is a cornerstone in shaping these pathways for stronger, resilient communities.

My background is in project management and strategic delivery. Supporting and ensuring the Board of Trustees continues its great work to maintaining an open and accountable foundation for Maraetai Beach School is foremost in my role as a representative.  


Vonja Young

Parent Trustee 

I was co-opted onto the BOT in February 2017 and have been a member ever since.  I hold the Policy and Legislation Portfolio on the current board. 

My husband and I have lived in the area since 2005.  Our son Jack is currently (in 2019) in Year 6 at MBS.  As a family we are passionate about this beautiful community we live in. 

I believe MBS provides our children with wonderful education and wide opportunities.  I love the values our children are taught everyday at MBS. 

I am a Solicitor specialising in family law.  I feel very priviledged to be a parent representative on the BOT at MBS and take my role very seriously.  I am looking forward to the next few years of working with our current board to achieve our strategic goals, always with a focus on growing a community of successful lifelong learners.



Tristan Gilchrist

Board Secretary

My first encounter with the school was over 12 years ago when my son started here because we were looking at moving overseas and this is where his best friend attended.  What started as a short-term option has led to my 4 children attending the school, and me having a job which I absolutely love.  My background is in Human Resources, but I feel so fortunate to have found a role where I am challenged, have diversity in my workday, and am able to build relationships with the students and their families.  I feel so proud to be able to say that I am a part of Maraetai Beach School and look forward to the future with the exciting developments that lie ahead, along with the support of our strong Board, Staff and community behind us. 

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Please click here to see our Board Presentation  

Please click here to see our 2022 BOT Special Programmes Report 

Please click here to see our Travelwise Presentation 

Please click here to see our Student Coaching programme - SHT

Please click here to see our Teacher Coaching programme - SW