Macraes Moonlight School - 27/09/2017

Summary

Macraes Moonlight School has a roll of 16 children. A new principal started at the beginning of 2017 and other teaching staff are new to the school since the last ERO review in 2014. The trustees and the community carry out significant fundraising to employ an extra full-time teacher at the school. Only one current trustee was on the board at the time of the last review.

The school has addressed most areas for development identified in ERO’s 2014 review report, including identifying priorities that needed to be strategically developed over time. The report identified the need to integrate the charter targets into the principal’s performance agreement. This remains an area for development.

The school is promoting equitable outcomes for all children well. Over the last three years, at least 80% of children achieved at or above the National Standards in reading. Mathematics and writing results have been more variable but most children achieve well in these areas. The school’s achievement results for 2016 were:

  • for reading and mathematics, 94% of children achieving at or above the National Standards
  • for writing, 75% of children achieving at or above the National Standards.

How well is the school achieving equitable outcomes for all children?

The principal and teachers employ effective processes to promote equity and excellence for all learners. Teachers identify children who need acceleration and have developed efficient strategies to lift their achievement.

The school has strong connections with the local community and parents, and there are significant efforts to support a wide, rich curriculum despite the isolated nature of the school.

The board needs to strengthen its governance guidelines and their implementation. It also needs to have a performance agreement in place for the principal. The board and principal need to build their understanding of effective internal evaluation and enactment. The process for making reliable overall teacher judgements (OTJs) should be clarified, documented then followed consistently. The principal needs to give regular evaluative reports to the board on the impact of efforts to lift achievement.

At the time of the review, children were achieving very well. End of 2016 information shows high levels of achievement in reading and mathematics and lower levels of achievement in writing.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in three years.

Equity and excellence

How effectively does this school respond to Māori and other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school is effectively responding to all children whose learning and achievement need acceleration.

All children who are at risk with their learning are very well supported and most make accelerated progress. No Māori children were enrolled at the school at the time of this review. The school is well prepared to support any Māori child attending the school or any other child whose progress needs to be accelerated.

There was some disparity in achievement for boys in writing in 2016. This was a focus for teachers and as a result some boys’ progress was accelerated. This is an ongoing focus in 2017.

The school has some moderation systems in place, however, teachers need to clarify and implement consistent processes to ensure reliable judgements are made against the National Standards.

School conditions supporting equity and excellence

What school processes are effective in enabling achievement of equity and excellence?

The school has effective processes to enable equity and excellence for learners.

The children’s opportunity to learn is promoted through the following conditions:

  • the children working and learning in settled class environments
  • the school having well thought-out values that support a culture of care and belonging
  • the way children are supported to understand their progress, achievement and next steps.

Children experience a curriculum that is responsive, balanced and linked to their needs, interests and abilities. The focus is on an integrated curriculum. Teachers make use of the flexible learning environment and opportunities for multi-level teaching.

Teachers know each child well and build positive, learner-focused relationships with children and their families They link the learning with children’s needs and interests. The principal monitors the progress towards annual achievement targets..

The board is well informed about levels of achievement, and trustees scrutinise the learning information and set priorities for improvement.

The board has a comprehensive plan for strategic direction and well-linked action planning to support these long-term goals.

Sustainable development for equity and excellence

The school has a strong focus on improvement and has developed some good systems and practices for enhancing learning outcomes for children.

What further developments are needed in school processes to achieve equity and excellence?

The board needs to strengthen its governance guidelines and their implementation.

The board and principal need to build their understanding of effective internal evaluation and enactment.

The board needs to have a performance agreement in place for the principal. This will enable the principal and the board of trustees to establish a clear intended direction for the school and build a collaborative way forward.

The processes for making reliable OTJs need to be clarified, documented then followed consistently.

The principal needs to give regular, evaluative reports to the board on the impact of efforts to lift achievement.

Board assurance on legal requirements

Before the review, the board 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 the following:

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

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

  • emotional safety of students (including prevention of bullying and sexual harassment)
  • physical safety of students
  • teacher registration and certification
  • processes for appointing staff
  • stand down, suspension, expulsion and exclusion of students
  • attendance
  • school policies in relation to meeting the requirements of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014.

Actions required

  1. ERO identified non-compliance in relation to the regularity of community consultation of the school’s health curriculum. In order to address this, the board must adopt a statement of delivery of the health curriculum, at least once every two years, after consultation with the school community. . [Section 60B Education Act 1989]

  2. ERO identified non-compliance in relation to the appraisal of teachers.

In order to address this, the board must ensure the school is compliant with Education Council requirements.

Going forward

How well placed is the school to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it?

Children are achieving well. The school demonstrates strong progress toward achieving equity in educational outcomes, supported by effective, sustainable processes and practices.

Agreed next steps are for:

  • the board to strengthen its governance guidelines and their implementation
  • the board and principal to build their understanding of effective internal evaluation and enactment
  • the board of trustees to have a performance agreement in place for the principal
  • the process for making reliable OTJs to be clarified, documented then followed consistently
  • the principal to give regular evaluative reports to the board of trustees on the impact of efforts to lift achievement.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in three years.

Dr Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern (Te Waipounamu)

27 September 2017

About the school

Location

East Otago

Ministry of Education profile number

3764

School type

Full Primary (Years 1-8)

School roll

16

Gender composition

Boys: 10 Girls: 6

Ethnic composition

Pākehā: 16

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

June 2017

Date of this report

27 September 2017

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review April 2014
Education Review March 2011
Education Review February 2008