Weston School - 30/06/2017

Summary

Weston School has a roll of 230 children, 36 of whom identify as Māori.

Since the 2013 ERO review, the school has:

  • introduced a range of well-planned initiatives to lift the achievement of any children working below the National Standards
  • extended its focus on the vision of developing ‘skilful thinkers’ and ‘life-long learners’.

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

This school responds well to Māori and other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration. There are a number of processes and practices that are effective in supporting children to have equitable opportunities to be successful in their learning. The school has effective internal evaluation processes to identify areas that need to be strengthened.

Key strengths of the school include:

  • the commitment of the school’s leaders to ongoing improvement using current education research

  • a shared responsibility for children who need extra help to succeed.

At the time of this reviewchildren were achieving well. The school demonstrates strong progress toward achieving equity in educational outcomes, supported by effective, sustainable processes and practices.

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?

This school responds well to Māori and other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration.

School information for the past three years shows that most children have achieved at or above the National Standards in writing, mathematics and reading. However, there is disparity between the levels of achievement for some groups of children. The school is yet to lift Māori children’s achievement to that of their peers in writing and mathematics.

School progress information shows that over a two-year period many children, including Māori children, whose achievement was at risk made accelerated progress in their learning.

The school has strong moderation and assessment practices. Teachers are well supported to ensure the reliability of their judgements in relation to children’s progress and achievement.

School conditions supporting equity and excellence

There are a number of processes and practices that are effective in supporting children to have equitable opportunities to be successful in their learning.

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

Children benefit from a very responsive curriculum. Key strengths are its local content, strong science focus, and flexibility. The ‘skilful thinker’ focus has helped children better understand their progress, achievement and next learning steps.

Teachers and leaders know the children very well as individuals and as learners. They take collective responsibility for their wellbeing and learning. There is a culture of high expectations of both children and staff.

Teachers, school leaders and trustees make very good use of assessment information when making decisions. Priority learners are carefully tracked and monitored, and quickly responded to.

Children with high needs benefit from well-planned and high quality support. There is also a strong focus on children’s wellbeing, so that they are able and ready to learn.

Senior leaders provide strong professional leadership. They model a commitment to ongoing learning. Leaders’ and teachers’ inquiries are relevant to improving children’s learning and engagement. Staff benefit from high quality professional learning and development.

Trustees are very well informed about student progress and achievement. They are strongly committed to improving teaching and learning for all learners.

Sustainable development for equity and excellence

The school has effective internal evaluation processes that identify areas that need to be strengthened.

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

The school needs to:

  • achieve equity in achievement for Māori children, especially in writing and mathematics
  • evaluate the impact of decisions made as a result of internal evaluation.

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.

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 for Weston School are to:

  • lift the achievement of Māori children, especially in writing and mathematics

  • better evaluate the impact of decisions made as a result of internal evaluation.

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

Dr Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern (Te Waipounamu)

30 June 2017

About the school 

Location

Weston, North Otago

Ministry of Education profile number

3864

School type

Full primary

School roll

230

Gender composition

Boys: 50% Girls: 50%

Ethnic composition

Māori 16%
Pākehā 75%
Pacific 1%
Filipino 2%
Asian 2%
Other 4%

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

May 2017

Date of this report

30 June 2017

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review July 2013
Education Review March 2010
Education Review December 2006