Pinehaven School - 15/12/2015


A responsive and inclusive curriculum promotes engagement, learning and success for diverse learners. Students achieve well in relation to National Standards. Reciprocal community partnerships are fostered. An effective leadership team works collaboratively to promote improvement. Ongoing teacher inquiry and learning drive acceleration of progress of all students, particularly those at risk of underachieving.

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?

Pinehaven School caters for Years 1 to 6 students in Upper Hutt and from nearby semi-rural areas. Since the 2012 ERO review, the roll has increased to 246 students which includes 9% Māori. During that time three new staff, including an assistant principal, have been appointed.

Recent property improvements include development of the senior classroom block to promote increased programme flexibility and student-led learning. The community has initiated and sponsored the development of a bike track, with bicycles and helmets provided. Spacious grounds are well used by the community.

The school has established a position for a mathematics specialist teacher (MST) which is partially funded by the Ministry of Education. The MST provides learning support for targeted groups of students and leadership for staff.

An experienced board chair and trustees promote community involvement in the life of the school. Consultations with families, whānau and students inform the charter, programmes and decision making.

An increased focus on programmes, resourcing and partnerships to support Māori students is evident since the 2012 ERO report. Bicultural perspectives are increasingly promoted for all learners.

2 Learning

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

Leaders and teachers make good use of achievement information to improve levels of engagement, rates of progress and achievement across the school. There is regular sharing and analysis of data at all levels of the school to inform planning and decision making.

Professional learning and development (PLD) and coaching from leaders is supporting improved use of data to inform classroom programmes and inform teacher inquiries. Leaders collate and analyse data and use this with teachers to set and monitor progress against annual targets and goals.

School achievement information is used well to identify and respond to groups of students in need of extra support. A wide range of useful information about students’ progress and next steps is shared with parents. Students are increasingly involved in understanding and monitoring their own learning and sharing information in meetings with their families and whānau.

Schoolwide tracking shows steady improvement in achievement, particularly in reading and writing over the past three years. Targeted teaching of groups of students at risk of underachievement in mathematics has led to accelerated progress for most of these students in 2015. This includes some valuable progress for Pacific and Māori learners.

Sustained writing PLD since 2012 and classroom interventions have been effective in increasing rates of progress for many students at risk in writing so they are now at expected levels for their age.

Māori students’ progress and achievement is monitored by leaders and shows steady improvement since the previous ERO report. High levels of achievement in reading are evident where they are above that of their peers. Achievement in writing and mathematics continues to improve as a result of targeted support. A next step to further promote equity and excellence for this group is to set specific annual targets which are monitored, tracked and reported on to trustees and the community.

3 Curriculum

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

The Pinehaven School curriculum provides a wide range of opportunities, strategies and resources for students to be successful learners. Students learn in caring, collaborative communities with wellestablished routines and expectations for positive participation in learning.

Students and their families are actively engaged in curriculum decisions and planning. Student voice and input is used well to inform teachers of their needs, interests and aspirations. Use of local contexts and expertise enriches programmes. Teacher modelling, respectful relationships and increased emphasis on strategies for self-managing supports learners’ independence and engagement in their learning.

Across the school, teachers are using research, redesigned learning spaces and technologies to actively foster lifelong learning competencies and dispositions. Collaborative models of classroom practice are being developed to provide flexibility, choice and independence for learners to extend their achievements.

Teachers contribute to and use shared guidelines and expectations for consistency of teaching and learning. They regularly participate in reflection and inquiry into their practices to improve outcomes for children. Curriculum leadership is well supported and distributed. Leaders discuss and analyse regular assessment and monitoring of children’s progress and achievement across the curriculum.

Teachers are developing their skills and knowledge to increase their cultural competencies and responsiveness in the curriculum through consultation, PLD and involvement in cultural protocols. Students experience te reo me ngā tikanga Māori in a range of settings and relevant contexts.

ERO affirms leaders’ plans to evaluate the recently implemented changes in curriculum design and managing of learning. This includes measuring the impact of these strategies on the acceleration of target students’ progress.

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

Trustees, leaders and teachers, in association with whānau and the community, have increased support and opportunities for Māori students to be successful.

These initiatives and programmes have helped to raise the profile of te ao Māori at the school. Students participate in karakia, mihimihi, waiata, kapa haka, pōwhiri, and making of tukutuku panels. A group of senior students are also involved successfully in Ngā Tama Toa, a culturally-based mentoring and leadership group.

The development, promotion and implementation of initiatives have been enhanced by:

  • developing charter goals and strategies and consulting with the community to set expectations and actions to meet these
  • senior leaders’ commitment to raising Māori achievement and success
  • a Māori curriculum focus team who lead consultation, build partnerships with whānau, and support colleagues
  • school involvement in PLD, te ao Māori cultural events, festivals and celebrations.

Trustees are seeking to co-opt a Māori representative onto the board.

Next steps should include:

  • further strengthening school relationships with whānau to increase opportunities for reciprocal learning-centred partnerships
  • developing indicators to evaluate the impact of joint initiatives on students’ wellbeing, achievement and success as Māori.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

Effective processes and practices enable the school to be very well placed to sustain and improve its performance.

A cohesive and effective senior leadership team has a strong improvement focus. Leaders set and model high expectations for reviewing and evaluating the quality and effectiveness of programmes and practices. Schoolwide expectations, strategies and actions to promote improvements are shared and known schoolwide. Expected learners’ outcomes are closely linked to school priorities, goals and targets.

Self-review policies, procedures and guidelines are well embedded into the school ethos and operation. These underpin expectations that leaders and teachers will use a range of tools and evidence to inform their practice and improve outcomes for learners.

Leadership development and knowledge building are valued and well supported through processes and practices that promote inquiry and evaluation. Teachers collaboratively share and discuss student data and outcomes of their initiatives to improve learners’ rates of progress. All staff are actively involved in leading their own learning and model this with their students where appropriate.

Frequent learning opportunities for teachers support the school’s capacity to sustain improvement. PLD is responsive and well designed to fit the school context, culture and ongoing needs. Collaborative knowledge is built through regular classroom observations and feedback by leaders, and using external expertise as required.

The teacher appraisal process and practices effectively support professional growth and responsive classroom practice. A robust and evolving use of inquiry, goal setting, professional dialogue and useful feedback provide a sound basis for ongoing improvement. A next step is to further strengthen the process by including performance goals, at all levels, related explicitly to student outcomes.

The board is well informed about its role and responsibilities. Trustees receive regular and useful information to make decisions and monitor strategic priorities. They work with the community to review and develop the school vision, values and strategic direction. ERO affirms the board’s intention to develop processes to better evaluate its own effectiveness.

Leaders and trustees have continued to build positive relationships across the school community. These partnerships are enhanced through regular community consultation, student-led reporting with parents, an online portal and an active parent teacher organisation.

Since the previous ERO review the school has responded well to external evaluation and implemented well-considered improvements. The principal and some trustees contribute to and take on leadership roles in the wider education community.

The school ethos fosters students’ wellbeing so they can be successful learners. School values, initiatives and programmes actively encourage the development of physical, social and emotional competencies. Students are encouraged and supported to develop resilience through managing risks, problem solving and collaboration.

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.


A responsive and inclusive curriculum promotes engagement, learning and success for diverse learners. Students achieve well in relation to National Standards. Reciprocal community partnerships are fostered. An effective leadership team works collaboratively to promote improvement. Ongoing teacher inquiry and learning drive acceleration of progress of all students, particularly those at risk of underachieving.

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

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

15 December 2015

School Statistics


Upper Hutt

Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll


Gender composition

Male 51%, Female 49%

Ethnic composition





Other ethnic groups






Review team on site

November 2015

Date of this report

15 December 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

October 2012

August 2009

May 2006