Yendarra School - 04/05/2011

The Education Review Office (ERO) Evaluation

Yendarra School continues to provide a wide variety of educational opportunities for its predominantly Pacific and Māori students. The high priority that the board of trustees has placed on student learning, engagement, progress and achievement, and senior managers’ emphasis on the use of effective teaching practices, have resulted in students having positive attitudes to learning, better relationships with other students and teachers, and improved levels of achievement. The board and senior managers have fostered supportive relationships with parents.

The 2007 ERO report commented favourably on students’ readiness for learning, teachers’ increased skills in analysing data, particularly for students in Years 4 to 6, an emphasis on further developing teachers’ skills, and the strong professional leadership of the school. ERO noted that the significant progress that had been made in providing high quality governance, leadership and management. This ERO review finds that the progress identified in 2007 has continued and that further improvements have been made in the quality of teaching and learning across the school.

Students report that they enjoy school. Most make good progress and, in many cases, progress in writing and numeracy is accelerated. Achievement data for 2010 indicate that the majority of students achieve at or above national expectations in numeracy and writing. The achievement of Māori and groups of Pacific students is identified separately so that the progress of these students can be monitored. Data showing the achievement of different cultural groups suggests that Pacific students achieve well. Trustees and senior managers have identified, and ERO agrees, that raising levels of achievement for Māori students will be a continued focus for trustees, senior managers and teachers.

Effective leadership is practised at all levels of the school, governance, management, teaching and learning levels. Managers model effective teaching and learning practices and lead teaching teams, or hapu, effectively. Senior managers have high expectations for students’ learning, progress and achievement. Leaders have good knowledge of students, parents and the community and have identified ways to further strengthen parent and community engagement in the school, including through more frequent sharing of student assessment data.

Effective self-review practices operate at every level of school operations and student achievement data form the baseline for decision making. A strategically planned approach to strengthening parent, whānau and aiga involvement in their children’s learning is evident.

Future Action

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

Yendarra School’s Curriculum

How effectively does the curriculum of Yendarra School promote student learning - engagement, progress and achievement?

School context and self review

Yendarra School has continued to undergo significant changes over the past three years. Changes to trustees, senior managers, team leaders and teachers, and improvements in the school’s property and facilities, have continued to impact positively on outcomes for students.

The school curriculum provides for a wide variety of learning experiences that promote students’ use of inquiry and digital technologies to support and enhance their learning. A strong focus is maintained on students’ learning, engagement, progress and achievement.

Since the 2007 ERO review the school has ceased its provision for Māori and Samoan bilingual education. The school organisation is responsive to student assessment data. Separate classes cater for students who are identified as having special talents and abilities, high performance, or who would benefit from additional learning support, and for boys who prefer learning in a boys-only class. The organisation of the school supports students to engage in learning and to achieve.

Effective self-review practices are in place. Parents and the school community have frequent opportunities to share their aspirations and to provide comment on school organisation and curriculum developments. Trustees receive informative reports from the principal and use student achievement information to guide their decision making. Senior managers and teachers use data effectively to make ongoing improvements in learning programmes and to identify opportunities for professional learning and development. Rigorous implementation of quality assurance practices enables senior managers to monitor the quality of teaching across the school. Teachers reflect on their professional work and provide very good programme evaluations that identify strengths and next steps for further improvement in their programme and teaching practice.

Areas of strength

Curriculum. The school’s curriculum effectively promotes student learning, progress and achievement. Students are at the heart of Yendarra’s School curriculum. The curriculum values and enhances students’ prior knowledge. Teachers appropriately prioritise the teaching of literacy and numeracy. The curriculum includes meaningful content and contexts for learning and has the potential to empower students as leaders of their learning. It is future-focused, using e-learning and information and communication technologies (ICT) to access manipulate, publish and share ideas. The Ministry of Education’s strategies for Māori and Pacific education, Ka Hikitia, Managing for Success, Māori Education Strategy and Pasifika Education Plan are interwoven in the school’s curriculum.,

Student engagement. Students are well engaged in their learning. They know the purpose of learning, have high expectations of themselves and practise the concept of ‘ako’ so that they see themselves as both teachers and learners. Teachers and students develop success criteria together. Students have good opportunities to self assess, reflect on their learning, receive and give feedback and share their reflections in a variety of ways. Student engagement is well promoted through good use of questioning and thinking skills. Good use of ICT has increased student engagement and has enhanced students’ opportunities to learn.

Student progress and achievement. Assessment data suggest that student progress and achievement is improving. Most make progress and many make accelerated improvements in writing and numeracy. The majority of students achieve at or above national expectations in numeracy and writing. Teachers work purposefully throughout the year to meet set targets. Very good monitoring and tracking of student achievement is reflected in teachers’ ongoing refinement of their teaching practices. Teachers analyse data collaboratively and engage in professional discussions frequently in hapu. As a result, a shared responsibility for advancing student progress and raising student achievement is accepted. Student achievement is analysed to identify the achievement of Māori and groups of Pacific students. The data suggest that Pacific students achieve well. Managers agree with ERO that more consistently separating data for different cultural groups in class analyses would give teachers rich information about their students’ progress and achievement.

Educationaland professionalleadership. Effective leadership is practised at governance, management and teaching and learning levels. Leadership of change in curriculum and teaching practices has continued. Managers are strong models of effective teaching and learning practices and provide their teaching teams with good leadership. They provide easy to follow school documents to support the consistent delivery of the school’s curriculum. Managers have high expectations for students’ learning, progress and achievement. They know students, parents and the community well and have identified further strategies to help ensure that teachers and students are learning focused. Senior managers have established positive working relationships with professional leaders in other schools.

Teaching development. Improvements in teaching practice are supported by a continued focus on improving teachers’ professional skills and their teaching practices so that they respond to students’ identified learning needs. Trustees, managers and teachers are committed to the implementation of effective teaching and learning practices. Teachers needing additional support to improve practices are identified and steps are taken to support them. Teachers engage in ongoing external and internal professional learning and development. Some teachers use students’ home languages skilfully to communicate with students who have English as an additional language.

Governance. The school is well governed and well resourced to ensure that the curriculum is accessible to all students. Systematic use is made of achievement data as part of self review to help set a clear direction for the strategic development of the school. Trustees work in partnership with the senior management team and keep abreast of educational matters. They allocate the school budget to reflect the school’s priorities. They are reflective of the community.

Areas for development and review

Raising Māori student achievement. Trustees, senior managers and staff have a strong commitment to raising Māori student engagement, progress and achievement. Senior managers have already put in place strategies to improve student learning engagement, progress and achievement. They have identified, and ERO agrees, that further developments to raise Māori progress and achievement will continue.

Student-led learning. Senior managers and teachers have made a very good start in using strategies that promote students’ ownership for their learning. They have identified, and ERO agrees, that further improvements are needed so that students can further increase their ability to work as self-directed learners.

School’s curriculum. As part of review of the school’s curriculum document, senior managers could consider ways to develop shared understandings with parents about the school’s learning progressions so that this information is more accessible to parents. Having a clearer understanding of the ways in which children’s learning develops would enable parents to be more active partners in their children’s learning.

Refining assessment practices. Senior managers could include in the assessment of students on entry to school, and after the first and second year of school, the use of a norm-referenced assessment tool for measuring students’ ability in reading. This practice would provide trustees, senior managers and teachers with information that could be measured against national achievement norms.

Preparedness for and use of National Standards. Senior managers and teachershave made a good start in understanding and using data in relation to the National Standards. They acknowledge that further development is needed to increase teachers’ understanding and to adapt reporting to show whether students are achieving at, above, below or well below national age-related expectations in reading, writing and numeracy.

Agreed Priorities

ERO and the board of trustees agree that the next stages of school development should focus on improving:the achievement of Māori students; and

  • strategies to facilitate more student-led learning.

Board Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the board of trustees and principal of Yendarra School completed an ERO Board Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they had taken all reasonable steps to meet their legal obligations related to:

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

During the review, ERO looked at the school’s documentation, including policies, procedures and records. ERO sampled recent use of procedures and checked elements of the following five areas that have a potentially high impact on students’ achievement:

  • emotional safety of students (including prevention of bullying and sexual harassment);
  • physical safety of students;
  • teacher registration;
  • stand-downs, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions; and
  • attendance.

Future Action

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

Richard Thornton

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

4 May 2011

About The School

School type

Otara, Auckland

Decile1

1

School roll

362

Gender composition

Girls 54%,

Boys 46%

Ethnic composition

Māori 23%,

Samoan 39%,

Cook Island Māori 18%,

Tongan 17%,

Niuean 2%,

other 1%

Review team on site

November 2010

Date of this report

4 May 2011

Previous three ERO reports

Education Review October 2007,

Education Review, May 2005

Accountability Review, June 2001

4 May 2011

To the Parents and Community of Yendarra School

These are the findings of the Education Review Office’s latest report on Yendarra School.

Yendarra School continues to provide a wide variety of educational opportunities for its predominantly Pacific and Māori students. The high priority that the board of trustees has placed on student learning, engagement, progress and achievement, and senior managers’ emphasis on the use of effective teaching practices, have resulted in students having positive attitudes to learning, better relationships with other students and teachers, and improved levels of achievement. The board and senior managers have fostered supportive relationships with parents.

The 2007 ERO report commented favourably on students’ readiness for learning, teachers’ increased skills in analysing data, particularly for students in Years 4 to 6, an emphasis on further developing teachers’ skills, and the strong professional leadership of the school. ERO noted that the significant progress that had been made in providing high quality governance, leadership and management. This ERO review finds that the progress identified in 2007 has continued and that further improvements have been made in the quality of teaching and learning across the school.

Students report that they enjoy school. Most make good progress and, in many cases, progress in writing and numeracy is accelerated. Achievement data for 2010 indicate that the majority of students achieve at or above national expectations in numeracy and writing. The achievement of Māori and groups of Pacific students is identified separately so that the progress of these students can be monitored. Data showing the achievement of different cultural groups suggests that Pacific students achieve well. Trustees and senior managers have identified, and ERO agrees, that raising levels of achievement for Māori students will be a continued focus for trustees, senior managers and teachers.

Effective leadership is practised at all levels of the school, governance, management, teaching and learning levels. Managers model effective teaching and learning practices and lead teaching teams, or hapu, effectively. Senior managers have high expectations for students’ learning, progress and achievement. Leaders have good knowledge of students, parents and the community and have identified ways to further strengthen parent and community engagement in the school, including through more frequent sharing of student assessment data.

Effective self-review practices operate at every level of school operations and student achievement data form the baseline for decision making. A strategically planned approach to strengthening parent, whānau and aiga involvement in their children’s learning is evident.

Future Action

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

Review Coverage

This report provides an evaluation of how effectively the school’s curriculum promotes student learning - engagement, progress and achievement. ERO’s evaluation takes account of the school’s previous reporting history and is based on:

  • what is known about student achievement information, including the achievement of Māori and Pacific students;
  • decisions made to improve student achievement using assessment and selfreview information; and
  • teaching strategies and programmes implemented to give effect to the school’s curriculum.

ERO also gathers information during the review to contribute to its national reports. The national reports are published on ERO’s website.

If you would like a copy of the full report, please contact the school or see the ERO website, www.ero.govt.nz.

Richard Thornton

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

General Information about Reviews

About ERO

ERO is an independent, external evaluation agency that undertakes reviews of schools and early childhood services throughout New Zealand.

About ERO Reviews

ERO follows a set of standard procedures to conduct reviews. The purpose of each review is to:

  • improve educational achievement in schools; and
  • provide information to parents, communities and the government.

Reviews are intended to focus on student achievement and build on each school’s self review.

Review Focus

ERO’s framework for reviewing and reporting integrates the following:

  • school curriculum;
  • national evaluation topics –contribute to the development of education policies and their effective implementation; and
  • the Board Assurance Statement, including student and staff health and safety.

ERO’s review is responsive to the school’s context. When ERO reviews a school, it takes into account the characteristics of the community from which it draws its students, its aspirations for its young people, and other relevant local factors.

ERO also builds on the school’s own self-review information. ERO is interested in how a school monitors the progress of its students and aspects of school life and culture, and how it uses this information to improve student learning.

This helps ERO to answer the major evaluation question for reviews:

How effectively does this school’s curriculum promote student learning - engagement, progress and achievement?

Areas for Development and Review

ERO reports include areas for development and review to support on-going improvement by identifying priorities. Often the school will have identified these matters through its own self review and already plans further development in those areas.

1 School deciles range from one to ten. Decile one schools  draw their students from low socioeconomic communities and at the other end of the range, decile 10 schools draw their students from high socio-economic communities. Deciles are used to provide funding to state and state integrated schools. The lower the school’s decile the more funding it receives. A school’s decile is in no way linked to the quality of education it provides.