Green Bay High School - 02/08/2017

Findings

Students enjoy a curriculum that responds to their needs and interests and provides meaningful pathways to future education and employment. A well coordinated pastoral network supports students and underpins their learning. A professional and collaborative culture promotes continuous improvement for the benefit of all students.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in four-to-five years.

1 Context

What are the important features of this school that have an impact on student learning?

Green Bay High School is a co-educational school, catering for students in Years 9 to 15. The school has a positive profile in its community and has a growing roll. Nearly 15 percent of students are Māori and five percent have Pacific heritage.

The school’s shared vision of “learning that is innovative, individualised and connected” is underpinned by the values of excellence, courage, respect and responsiveness. The vision is upheld by the leadership team, and is also well understood and supported by parents, teachers and students.

Green Bay High School is part of the Kōtuitui Community of Learning I Kāhui Ako (CoL), comprising 12 member schools from the surrounding area. The overall goal of the CoL is to become an educational research and development centre for the community with a commitment to inquiring into what makes a positive difference for learners.

Since the 2014 ERO report, the focus for the school has been on developing collaborative leadership approaches, refining the Green Bay learner profile, and increasing coherence across all areas of school operations. A number of leadership teams, including student leadership teams, are now in place.

ERO’s 2014 report recommended increasing bicultural practices in learning programmes, and further engagement and consultation with whānau Māori.

2 Learning

How well does this school use achievement information to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement?

The school makes very good use of the extensive amount of student information it gathers, to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement. An holistic approach to assessment provides a richness to the school’s assessment information. Effective systems enable the data to be analysed in multiple ways for use by a variety of stakeholders.

The board of trustees, school leaders and teachers use evidence-based decision making for ongoing school improvement. Trustees and senior leaders use achievement information to set school priorities and appropriate achievement targets and closely monitor progress. Student voice informs department and teacher inquiries into the effectiveness of current practices and curriculum and pastoral programmes.

Teachers use achievement information very well to identify and respond appropriately to students who benefit from tailored and targeted intervention and pathways. Senior leaders and teachers have ready access to data that provide an understanding of individual students’ progress and achievement, and support effective academic counselling in Years 11 to 13. The data are also used to support a more concentrated focus on relationships with Year 11 parents and whānau at this critical part of the learning pathway.

School leaders and teachers use a wide variety of assessment information to support students at other key transition times in their learning pathway. Dialogue between teachers and the contributing schools and the gathering of useful data support smooth transitions into the school. The sharing of data and collective responsibility for student achievement within the school is assisting students’ positive transitions between year levels.

Students have many opportunities to engage with their achievement information. They are taught strategies, using their own achievement information, to be actively involved in decisions about how to make progress in their learning. Students’ engagement is being heightened through an increased awareness of themselves as learners.

The school has inclusive and responsive practices to support students with special learning needs. Staff have a shared commitment and responsibility for student progress and ensure that students are able to participate in appropriate learning programmes. Individual learning plans are regularly revisited to monitor the progress of students with high learning needs.

Achievement information shows a very positive upward trend in levels of student success in the National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEA) at Levels 1, 2 and 3. An increase in the number of endorsements at all levels is also significant.

The data show that the school has been very successful in raising Māori students’ NCEA achievement levels since the 2014 ERO review. Māori students now achieve at similar levels as the general school population. As there is a small number of Pacific students, it is difficult for school leaders to collect reliable cohort achievement information over time. Pacific students are monitored individually and achieve very well.

Senior leaders are investigating meaningful and useful ways of gathering data to measure student progress and achievement over time in Years 9 and 10.

3 Curriculum

How effectively does this school’s curriculum promote and support student learning?

Green Bay High School’s curriculum is very effective in engaging and supporting student learning. The curriculum responds to students’ needs and interests, offering a variety of academic, cultural and sporting learning opportunities. It clearly reflects the principles of The New Zealand Curriculum, and provides meaningful pathways for students. There is a focus on building literacy skills across the curriculum.

The development of cross-curricular learning opportunities, supported by the school’s Vocational Pathways and Careers Teams is growing. These developments provide wider curriculum opportunities that empower students to seek qualification and employment opportunities. An example is the collaboration of science, mathematics and technology teachers with the Engineering Education to Employment programme at UNITEC. The school also engages with a Virtual Learning Network to provide additional learning opportunities for students to broaden curriculum pathways.

In 2017 the school introduced initiatives in Years 9 and 10 to support the engagement and learning of students at risk of not achieving. These include moving away from lower banding of classes at Year 9 and introducing mixed ability classes. In addition, a learning support class in Year 9, and a Sports in Education class in Year 10 have been introduced. Teachers are seeing an immediate positive impact on learning for all students.

There is a strong focus in the school curriculum on student agency and providing leadership opportunities. Student groups from Year 9 to 13 work with school leaders to identify and lead initiatives that contribute to ongoing expansion and change in the curriculum. Students encourage and empower each other and are well supported in their leadership roles.

Teachers are well supported to deliver the curriculum successfully. They see themselves as learners within the school’s wider professional learning culture. There is an expectation from senior leaders that teachers’ professional inquiries and reflections will drive curriculum and teaching approaches to continue to meet the diverse needs of students. Collaboration between staff to support the needs of students is evident.

A well coordinated pastoral network supports students and underpins their learning. The school has extensive practices and systems to promote student wellbeing. Strong relationships and partnerships support all practices. As a result, students are curious, enjoy intellectual engagement and confidently tackle leadership challenges. Students have pride and a sense of ownership and belonging in their school.

The school has an appropriate focus on continuing to build teachers’ capacity for inquiry and adaptive practice, and making learning more visible for students and parents.

How effectively does the school promote educational success for Māori, as Māori?

Since ERO’s 2014 evaluation the school has addressed disparity for Māori students in achievement at NCEA levels.

Te reo Māori is available through to Year 13. Strengthened school kawa provides opportunities for students to participate more confidently in the Year 9 pōwhiri and kapa haka.

The school has a useful, documented ‘Ka Hikitia Annual Plan’ that helps the school build on initiatives designed to promote success for Māori students, as Māori. The plan includes collaborative school-based initiatives and department inquiries into how well their practices help to develop the potential of all Māori students. There is a greater shared ownership by staff of the school’s Ka Hikitia plan that is fostering the development of biculturalism in the school.

Relationships are built with parents and whānau on an individual basis, for the benefit of students in their learning and future pathways.

ERO recommends school leaders use the outcomes of the school’s Ka Hikitia related inquiries to maintain the momentum of positive actions and to strengthen culturally responsive practices.

4 Sustainable Performance

How well placed is the school to sustain and improve its performance?

The school is very well placed to sustain its current good practices and continue to enhance its performance.

The board provides effective governance. Decision-making is well informed with a focus on student learning and wellbeing. Very good working relationships between the trustees and school management help the work of the board. There are good systems to ensure school accountabilities are met.

Leadership in the school is highly effective and strategic. Distributed and emergent leadership opportunities are encouraged and well supported across the school at all levels. The principal and senior leaders clearly articulate the school’s teaching and learning model, ensuring that it is evident in practice. Faculty leaders, professional learning leaders, pastoral care leaders, classroom teachers and support staff all lead in the ongoing improvement of programmes. The spirit of leadership nurtured in students ensures they are very active participants in school decision-making.

Aligned and integrated systems and processes across all levels have resulted in a cohesive and coherent framework for all school operations. There is clear line of sight from the charter to the principal’s performance agreement, department annual plans, teachers’ inquiries, professional learning and development programmes, and teacher appraisal and registration processes. This alignment is fostering a positive and collaborative culture of continuous improvement for the benefit of students.

Effective professional inquiry throughout the school is used very well to support ongoing improvement. Staff are supported by the professional learning team to engage explicitly with the school’s ‘spiral of inquiry’ model. All faculties include this aspect in their annual plan process and it is integral to teachers’ appraisal. School leaders use outcomes of inquiries appropriately to evaluate effectiveness and set future school priorities.

The school’s self-identified future priority is to continue building its collective capacity to carry out and use evaluation to sustain improvement and innovation.

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students (The Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. The school has attested that is complies with all aspects of the Code.

At the time of this review there were 34 international students attending the school.

International students are provided with a high level of pastoral care and quality of education. They have ample opportunities to become involved in the life of the school through sporting and cultural activities. The students are well integrated into the school. Their education and wellbeing are closely monitored by the staff of the international education department and others.

Board assurance on legal requirements

Before the review, the board of trustees and principal of the school completed the ERO Board Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklists. In these documents they attested that they had taken all reasonable steps to meet their legislative obligations related to:

  • board administration
  • curriculum
  • management of health, safety and welfare
  • personnel management
  • financial management
  • asset management.

During the review, ERO checked the following items because they have a potentially high impact on student achievement:

  • emotional safety of students (including prevention of bullying and sexual harassment)
  • physical safety of students
  • teacher registration
  • processes for appointing staff
  • stand-downs, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions
  • attendance.

Conclusion

Students enjoy a curriculum that responds to their needs and interests and provides meaningful pathways to future education and employment. A well coordinated pastoral network supports students and underpins their learning. A professional and collaborative culture promotes continuous improvement for the benefit of all students.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in four-to-five years. 

Violet Tu’uga Stevenson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

2 August 2017

About the School 

Location

Green Bay, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

42

School type

Secondary (Years 9 to 15)

School roll

1402

Number of international students

34

Gender composition

Girls 52%, Boys 48%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā
Māori
Other European
Pacific nations
Indian
South East Asian
other ethnicities

60%
14%
9%
5%
2%
2%
8%

Special Features

On-site satellite unit of Oaklyn Special School

Review team on site

June 2017

Date of this report

2 August 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review
Education Review
Education Review

November 2014
October 2011
November 2008