Matiere School - 30/06/2014

Findings

Students benefit from good quality teaching and learning. They increasingly manage their own learning. Students are valued as taonga tuku iho. Parents and whānau continue to be very involved in their children’s learning. Achievement information is tracking well towards meeting the Ministry of Education goal of 85% by 2017.

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

1 Context

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

Matiere School is a small rural primary school situated 30km north east of Taumarunui, within the Ngāti Maniapoto tribal areas. The school caters for students in Years 1 to 8 and has a current roll of 24 students, of whom 7 identify as Māori.

The first time principal is highly collaborative and has built a strong sense of team work amongst staff. She is a leader of learning and has developed strong networks with the wider school community of Taumarunui. These networks have a positive impact on ongoing school improvement.

The experienced board chair continues to provide strong leadership and guidance to the board. Trustees are supportive and have a strong focus on each student’s wellbeing and achievement.

A safe, family-like atmosphere within the school is underpinned by a strong values education programme called 'PROUD' – Presentation, Respect, Ownership, Unity and Determination.

The school has a positive reporting history with ERO.

2 Learning

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

Most students including Māori are achieving at or above National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. Teachers use a range of assessment tools and systematically record anecdotal data to make robust overall teacher judgements about student achievement and progress. Students at risk of under achieving are identified in each classroom and their progress is closely monitored and tracked. Over time, these students have made accelerated progress against the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics.

Teachers have developed effective processes and strategies, which have led to high levels of student engagement and ownership of their learning. Students share in developing and managing their own next steps for learning, particularly in writing. They have been given learning tools, which help them track and monitor their own progress. Recently, students have started to successfully lead student-led conferencing, which includes the teacher, parents/whānau and themselves.

Interventions have been put in place for those students at risk of not achieving. Trustees evaluate the effectiveness of interventions in relation to student achievement results.

Parents receive detailed written reports twice a year in relation to National Standards. The reports also indicate how students progress towards meeting the key competencies of The New Zealand Curriculum. The key competencies are effectively linked to the school's values programme.

3 Curriculum

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

A well-balanced, integrated curriculum effectively promotes and supports student learning. Students experience a rich curriculum, which includes opportunities for sport, kapa haka, and a wide range of camps that are strongly aligned to classroom learning. Students learn leadership skills through a daily emphasis on showing care of others, particularly for those younger or less capable than themselves.

A range of effective teaching strategies used by teachers include:

  • modelling

  • the use of authentic contexts for learning

  • meaningful integration of learning areas

  • effective management of multi-year level classes.

Teachers have high expectations for all students. Relationships between staff and students are warm and respectful. They are knowledgeable about national expectations in literacy and mathematics, and they effectively identify students learning needs and design appropriate programmes. The structure and use of teacher inquiry, is supporting teacher reflection about how they can improve student achievement. Attractive learning environments supports student learning and celebrates student success.

The board, principal and ERO agree that a next step for the school is to complete and document the Matiere School curriculum. Areas for improvement include:

  • the development and implementation of a local curriculum that reflects the aspirations of parents, whānau and community

  • clarifying expectations for the teaching of literacy and mathematics

  • the specific use of literacy and mathematics progressions to monitor student progress and achievement

  • developing and implementing a sequential-school wide approach to the teaching and learning of te reo Māori and local iwi history.

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

The school effectively promotes educational success for Māori as Māori. Te reo Māori is taught in all classes and is well used by teachers incidentally throughout the day. Māori tikanga and beliefs influence and underpin many everyday practices in the school, including karakia to begin and end the day. Whānau of new entrant children are given a native tree to plant in accordance with the belief that children are taonga tuku iho. Year 8 students receive a pounamu when they leave in accordance with the belief that the knowledge they have gained at Matiere is special and is a taonga to be used in the next stage of their learning journey.

Staff respectfully seek guidance from members of the Māori community before introducing Māori knowledge into learning programmes.

ERO recommends that teachers further investigate Māori preferred ways of teaching and learning. These are likely to further strengthen Māori student engagement and achievement.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is well placed to sustain and improve its performance.

  • The board is representative of the community and there are robust systems for strategic and annual planning and ongoing self review.

  • The principal is well respected in the community and she has a clear vision for the school, which is well communicated and shared with staff, trustees and community.

  • The school enjoys strong community support due to high levels of satisfaction with the level of consultation and communication provided by the principal and the staff.

  • A rigorous performance management system leads to ongoing teacher improvement.

  • Students report that they feel safe and included in all aspects of school life.

Trustees and principal have identified that it is important for the principal to continue to deepen her knowledge and understanding of the operational management of the school. Trustees could also strengthen their support for the principal by strengthening their understanding of their respective governance roles and responsibilities.

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 benefit from good quality teaching and learning. They increasingly manage their own learning. Students are valued as taonga tuku iho. Parents and whānau continue to be very involved in their children’s learning. Achievement information is tracking well towards meeting the Ministry of Education goal of 85% by 2017.

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

Dale Bailey
National Manager Review Services
Northern Region

30 June 2014

About the School

Location

North-East of Taumarunui

Ministry of Education profile number

2195

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

24

Gender composition

Boys 12
Girls 12

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā
Māori
Other

16
  7
  1

Review team on site

June 2014

Date of this report

30 June 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review
Education Review
Supplementary Review

April 2011
June 2008
June 2006