Te Horo School (Otaki) - 12/06/2017

Summary

Te Horo School, for students in Years 1 to 8, is situated in Te Horo on the Kapiti Coast. The roll of 232 students, includes 12% who identify as Māori.

Since the June 2014 ERO report, there has been a period of growth. This involved building a new classroom, appointing an additional teacher, providing two new playgrounds and a new all-weather turf area. In addition a multi-purpose hall has been built, the old hall has been upgraded and the senior classroom block remodelled.

Teachers have completed professional learning and development (PLD) on using achievement information. They are currently involved in PLD on teaching mathematics and to support changes in curriculum delivery. There have been multiple opportunities for staff to develop their skills through acting in leadership positions.

The school is investigating being part of the Otaki-Kapiti Community of Learning│Kāhui Ako and is open to the opportunities provided by membership of this group.

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

The school is well placed to improve and sustain equitable outcomes for all learners. Most learners are achieving well and the school is deliberate in its response to those children whose learning and achievement need acceleration. Māori student achievement is trending upward. The school is implementing planned strategies to continue to raise the achievement of targeted groups of learners.

The environment has a positive tone. Relationships are warm and respectful. Students experience a broad curriculum and have opportunities to learn in authentic, rural contexts. Trustees, leaders and teachers are highly reflective. The school demonstrates ongoing progress toward achieving equity in educational outcomes, supported by effective, sustainable processes and practices.

Agreed next steps are to:

  • monitor and evaluate the impact of new initiatives on student outcomes
  • strengthen teacher inquiry to more clearly identify successful strategies for accelerating achievement
  • strengthen appraisal, with more specific links to student outcomes and an evaluative focus on how well the Practising Teacher Criteria are met.

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 Māori and other children whose achievement requires acceleration.

Most students, including Māori, achieve well in relation to National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. Information over time shows an upward trend in National Standards achievement. Boys’ achievement is similar to that of girls in reading and mathematics.

Initiatives for a cohort of junior learners and for boys in writing have had a positive impact, evident in the 2016 National Standards information. There remains a disparity in boys’ achievement in writing.

A range of assessment tools are used to ensure accuracy of teacher judgements against the National Standards. Teachers should continue to develop their understanding of National Standards, particularly in determining achievement above the Standards. Considering ways to moderate with other schools may strengthen the dependability of assessment judgements.

School conditions supporting equity and excellence

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

The curriculum reflects the school’s rural nature and is responsive to children’s interests. The school’s core beliefs are evident in classrooms. The curriculum is broad and future focused. Children are supported to lead their learning by developing a positive attitude to new learning and capability in the key competencies. Valuing te ao Māori is evident throughout school operations and within the localised curriculum.

The school community is supportive and engaged. Home-school partnerships are promoted to support children’s progress and to guide school direction. Parents and whānau receive information and participate in learning opportunities that enable them to constructively support their child’s learning.

A deliberate and considered approach to change, led by the principal, is evident. Leaders set a positive and respectful school tone. They provide good quality feedback and ongoing monitoring of expectations. Teachers regularly access a range of external expertise to build their capacity for innovation and improvement. They engage in open-to-learning conversations.

Trustees receive a range of useful information from teachers and the community to set priorities and base their decisions. They actively support the school’s growth and focus on promoting positive outcomes for all children. The board is aware of the groups of learners who require extra assistance and provide appropriate resourcing for current initiatives. 

Sustainable development for equity and excellence

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

School structures and practices enable and sustain collaborative learning and decision making. Many schoolwide processes have been strengthened since the previous ERO review.

Leaders recognise the need to evaluate new initiatives and resulting changes to refine practice. The school’s internal evaluation should be strengthened through better use of indicators and comparison of relevant student achievement information.

Inquiry processes support teachers to raise their expectations of learners and reflect on the strategies that promote engagement and progress. Professional learning group inquiries assist teachers to look into their practice. Next steps are to clearly identify those strategies that are effective and those which were not, and the progress made by groups of students in the focus group.

An appropriate appraisal process affirms teacher practices and should contribute to ongoing improvement. Leaders should continue to refine appraisal with more reference to specific student outcomes within goal setting and a more evaluative focus on how well the Practising Teacher Criteria are met.

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. 

Appraisal audit

There is an appropriate appraisal process that affirms teacher practices and should contribute to ongoing teacher improvement. 

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 to:

  • monitor and evaluate the impact of new initiatives on student outcomes
  • strengthen teacher inquiry to more clearly identify successful strategies for accelerating achievement
  • strengthen appraisal, with more specific links to student outcomes and an evaluative focus on how well the Practising Teacher Criteria are met.

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

Patricia Davey

Acting Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

12 June 2017

About the school 

Location

Te Horo

Ministry of Education profile number

3038

School type

Full Primary (Years 1-8)

School roll

232

Gender composition

Boys 50%, Girls 50%

Ethnic composition

Māori 12%

Pākehā 85%

Other ethnic groups 3%

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

March 2017

Date of this report

12 June 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review June 2014

Education Review May 2011

Supplementary Review April 2009