Improved literacy and numeracy achievement is the first goal for the compulsory schooling sector in the Pasifika Education Plan. ERO evaluated the quality of the school’s Pacific student achievement information and the extent to which the literacy and numeracy of Pacific students had improved since their previous ERO review.
ERO found that 58 percent of schools collected good quality assessment information (about all students including Pacific) and used this to identify students that needed support, and for some school‑wide decision making. However, many leaders had not designed or implemented processes to extract information about groups of Pacific students from their school-wide data.
Well over half of the schools did not know whether the literacy and numeracy achievement of Pacific students as a group had improved since their previous ERO review. Fewer that 20 percent of schools were able to show that their Pacific students’ literacy and numeracy achievement had improved since then. Within the 20 percent of schools seventeen percent had improved literacy achievement and 15 percent had improved numeracy achievement levels.
The 2009 ERO pilot report identified that the overall quality of Pacific achievement information collected was good in most schools, and high in five of the schools in the Auckland sample. However, a quarter of the schools did not have sufficient reliable data to inform their planning and teaching decisions for Pacific students. Just under half had set targets focused on improving Pacific students’ progress and achievement.
The results from ERO’s 2009 Pilot and this evaluation differ significantly. Firstly, in 27 percent of the pilot study schools Pacific students comprised more than half of the roll. In eight of these schools Pacific students made up more than two-thirds of the roll.
In this wider evaluation in just over half of the schools Pacific students made up between one and five percent of the roll. Many leaders in these schools identified issues with students’ privacy when attempting to report such a small data set to the board. Some of these leaders also felt it was not always useful to combine all students from the diverse Pacific nations and cultures into one group for data analysis, programme planning and future decision making.
In order to advance the progress of Pacific students, and evaluate the impact of initiatives in place for them, it is essential that schools know about their achievement. Given that PIRLs, PISA and NEMP data show that Pacific students are over represented in the lowest achievement levels it is particularly important that leaders and boards develop processes to review and take action on the achievement of these students’.
One school with a small percentage of Pacific students had a register to track achievement and progress. The register included a profile on each student, with information families had provided, assessment results, diagnostic information, identified strengths and next development needs, special abilities, and strategies to support ongoing academic and social development. School leaders were aware of the progress and needs of the small group of Pacific students.
In other schools where more than five percent of the roll were Pacific students, other factors contributed to a lack of information about how well these students had progressed since the last ERO review. Some schools that collected useful data had introduced new assessment processes since the last ERO review and therefore did not have baseline data with which to make comparisons over time. Others had collated good information but had not analysed or interpreted this data to make decisions about previous programmes or future decisions. A few schools did not collate enough literacy and/or numeracy data to extract information about Pacific students.