Beach Haven School

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School Context

Beach Haven School is on Auckland’s North Shore and caters for children in Years 1 to 6. The culturally diverse roll includes 33 percent Māori children and 23 percent who have Pacific heritage. The local community has strong intergenerational connections with the school. Many children speak languages other than English.

The school’s vision is to ‘empower students, engage the community and grow staff’. The values of respect, responsibility, excellence and integrity are highly visible at every level of the school and are understood by children.

Since ERO’s last evaluation in 2015, school developments include:

  • introducing new leadership structures to enhance shared responsibility for the school’s strategic direction

  • teacher professional development programmes to support positive learning outcomes for children

  • improving te reo and tikanga Māori programmes as a result of internal evaluation

  • strategic planning to further develop digital learning opportunities for all children.

Leaders and teachers regularly report to the board schoolwide information about outcomes for children in the following areas:

  • achievement in reading, writing and mathematics

  • achievement in relation to school targets

  • community and whānau engagement

  • wellbeing and pastoral care

  • Māori and Pacific student progress and achievement

  • information about children with additional learning needs.

Evaluation Findings

1 Equity and excellence – achievement of valued outcomes for students

1.1 How well is the school achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for all its students?

Beach Haven School is working towards achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for all of its children. The 2017 achievement data indicate that the majority, including Māori children, achieve at or above expected curriculum levels in reading, writing and mathematics. Leaders and teachers are continuing to improve the dependability of the school’s achievement data.

Over the past two years there has been some progress in raising children’s achievement in writing. Progress has been made in lifting Pacific children’s achievement over this period in reading and writing. Senior leaders recognise that further work is required to sustain these improvements and to attain greater parity for Pacific children. There is disparity in achievement evident for boys in reading, and particularly in writing.

Children achieve very well in relation to other valued outcomes. They:

  • experience strong relationships founded on respect, nurture and care

  • collaborate with and learn from each other

  • confidently articulate their ideas and opinions

  • have a strong sense of their identity, language and culture

  • demonstrate the Beach Haven values in everyday school life.

1.2 How well is the school accelerating learning for those Māori and other students who need this?

The school is becoming effective at accelerating learning for Māori and other children who need this.

The school is able to show good examples of children whose achievement is being accelerated. Leaders and teachers have useful plans focused on supporting children who are at risk of not achieving. These plans are designed to bring these children’s achievement into line with that of their peers and to address disparity within the school.

A Kaupapa Māori Support Teacher (KMST) supported by Māori language assistants, takes a lead role across the school to accelerate Māori children’s progress. School leaders have identified that their next step is to replicate this approach for accelerating Pacific children’s progress.

Teachers have participated in schoolwide professional development to build their professional capability and collective capacity. Deliberate teaching strategies to support and accelerate learning are evident in the classrooms.

The school has very effective partnerships with parents, whānau and the community. Good communication supports reciprocal, learning centred relationships between school and home. As a result, parents and whānau are actively involved in their children’s learning and the life of the school.

2 School conditions for equity and excellence – processes and practices

2.1 What school processes and practices are effective in enabling achievement of equity and excellence, and acceleration of learning?

School leaders and the board of trustees provide sound leadership. A purposeful strategic plan outlines a clear direction for school improvement. Policies, processes and practices are aligned to the school’s vision and values. Trustees, school leaders and teachers build relational trust and develop culturally responsive relationships with the school community.

The school is a ‘learning community’ for leaders, teachers and children. Senior leaders are a professional, collaborative team and are well led by the principal. They draw on educational research to engage in professional learning to improve outcomes for children.

The curriculum continues to evolve and learning opportunities respond to children’s identified strengths and learning needs. Transitions from early learning centres, through the school and on to intermediate school are well considered. The needs of individual children are prioritised. A reception class fosters play-based learning approaches designed to prepare new entrants for learning. Children learn collaboratively and have good access to digital technologies. This is a continuing and positive feature of the curriculum.

Leaders and teachers use a ‘strengths-based’ approach to promote children’s academic achievement and wellbeing. This approach informs schoolwide resourcing and improvement initiatives. Children have access to high quality resources to support their learning.

Children with additional learning needs are very effectively supported to experience success. Their learning opportunities are designed to provide appropriate challenge and support.

Teachers’ inquiries into their own practice underpin the effective appraisal system. Teams of teachers lead significant change processes and drive school improvement. They promote effective teaching strategies to engage children in their learning.

2.2 What further developments are needed in school processes and practices for achievement of equity and excellence, and acceleration of learning?

Trustees, leaders and teachers should continue to embed and sustain effective processes and strategies to accelerate children’s progress and learning by:

  • strengthening internal evaluation processes and practices so the school knows more about the effectiveness of programmes and initiatives

  • continuing to increase opportunities for children to take more ownership of their learning

  • building on existing cultural competencies within the school to improve outcomes for children.

3 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

  • finance

  • 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.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

For sustained improvement and future learner success, the school can draw on existing strengths in:

  • highly collaborative leadership that builds trust with children, parents and whānau

  • powerful partnerships with parents and whānau that support positive outcomes for children

  • the school’s vision, values and strategic direction for equity and excellence.

Next steps

For sustained improvement and future learner success, priorities for further development are in:

  • systematically using internal evaluation for ongoing improvement and innovation, and to measure the impact of initiatives on improving learning outcomes

  • continuing to develop teaching and learning strategies that more effectively accelerate children’s learning

  • continuing to empower children to make decisions about, and plan for, their own learning.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Violet Tu’uga Stevenson

Director Review and Improvement Services

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

26 October 2018

About the school

Location

Beach Haven Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

1223

School type

Contributing ( Years 1-6)

School roll

363

Gender composition

Girls 47% Boys 53%

Ethnic composition

Māori 33%
Pākehā 22%
Samoan 13%
Tongan 5%
Asian 5%
other Pacific 5%
other ethnic groups 16%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

No

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

September 2018

Date of this report

26 October 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review June 2015
Education Review June 2012
Education Review May 2009

1 Context

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

Beach Haven School, on Auckland’s North Shore, caters for students in Years 1 to 6 who come from diverse cultural backgrounds. Māori students make up 36 percent of the roll. Nineteen percent of students have Pacific Island heritage. The leadership team is made up of the principal, deputy principal and two senior leaders, who lead the junior and senior school.

The 2012 ERO report noted that students generally make good progress and achieve well overall in reading, mathematics and writing. A focus for the school since the 2012 review has been on improving the quality of self-review processes. This focus includes work on the analysis and use of data, evaluative discussions about target students and work to improve communications with parents about student achievement. Staff have participated in professional learning and development in mathematics, writing and in the use of teaching as inquiry practices.

The school’s promotion and response to student wellbeing is extensive. A settled and inclusive tone in the school supports the learning of all students. Students are respected as learners and the school environment provides a vibrant place for them to engage in learning. The strong sense of community in the school is valued by students, teachers, board members and whānau.

2 Learning

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

School achievement information shows that at the end of 2014, approximately 86% of students were achieving at or above National Standards in reading, 71% in mathematics and 64% in writing. This information shows a notable improvement in student progress and achievement since 2013.

Extensive review and improvements in the teaching of mathematics and literacy programmes have resulted in positive outcomes for students. The school’s cohesive and collaborative approach to building teacher capability is resulting in accelerated student progress.

The board, senior leaders and teachers use achievement information well to make positive changes for learners. They use this information to set school priorities and achievement targets, evaluate the effectiveness of initiatives, and to inform curriculum decisions.

Teachers also use achievement information well to plan programmes that cater for their students’ different strengths and learning needs. A notable strength in the school is their effective use of data to accelerate achievement, particularly for those students who are achieving below the National Standard. There are some good examples of teachers personalising learning and supporting students to know how well they are achieving and their next learning steps. Inquiry learning approaches provide students with opportunities to lead their own learning.

The effective analysis and use of achievement information has also been an integral part of the leadership training that started in 2012. The introduction of whole-school teacher inquiry and learning talk frameworks is helping teachers to be more critically reflective on their teaching practices.

An area that should now be considered is ways in which achievement levels for those students who are already achieving at the National Standard can be further increased. This would extend the focus of teaching and learning, and increase the school’s expectations for its more able students.

Processes for collecting and using student contributions to inform self review have been strengthened. They now include focus groups, such as those for Māori students, Samoan students, students who are new to school, and students who have additional learning needs. An increased emphasis has also been placed on using teaching strategies that help students to better manage their own learning.

Students have a range of leadership opportunities, including opportunities to be student ambassadors, and to be part of the student inquiry team and/or curriculum focus groups. Students were involved in the 2013 curriculum review.

The school has inclusive and responsive practices and systems to support students with special education needs. Teachers and teacher aides have a shared commitment and responsibility for student progress. These approaches ensure that students participate fully in appropriate learning programmes and classroom activities.

Students enjoy and actively engage in their learning. They have very positive attitudes to school and support each other. This engagement is well supported by the inclusive school culture, which is increasing student involvement in decisions about school and their own learning. Leaders recognise that continuing to strengthen and embed student involvement across the school is a continuing priority.

3 Curriculum

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

The school’s curriculum promotes and supports student learning effectively.

Students benefit from a broad and interesting curriculum, which has an appropriate balance between literacy and mathematics. Teacher strengths are utilised to provide students with a wide range of enriching learning opportunities, such as those connected to kapa haka, Samoan language learning, music, digital media and sporting activities. School leaders and teachers work with local early childhood services and have begun to make links to the local college to support smooth transitions for students when entering and leaving the school.

Teachers focus on making learning fun and on selecting relevant and meaningful learning contexts for children. Senior leaders and teachers constantly review programme content, contexts and teaching strategies to help ensure that they build well on children’s prior knowledge and cater for a range of learning styles.

The curriculum includes some aspects that reflect the bicultural heritage of Aotearoa New Zealand. Senior leaders are considering how these aspects can be extended and developed in further depth as students progress up through the school.

Teachers are well supported to deliver the school curriculum. In the last two years, the school has contracted in-depth, external reviews of the quality of teaching and learning in mathematics and literacy. These reviews have helped to build shared understandings about effective teaching practices.

Senior leaders have also used both external and internal expertise to build teacher capability and teaching practice, and to improve student outcomes in mathematics and writing. Educational coaching, the use of the ‘learning talk framework’ and the teaching as inquiry focus provide opportunities for teachers to reflect on their own practice. Senior leaders and teachers would now like to consolidate and embed inquiry learning practices across the school and in all eight curriculum learning areas. A next step for achieving this goal would be to develop indicators of effective inquiry learning to help build shared understandings and practice for all teachers. Senior leaders identify that continuing to strengthen e-learning in the school is a further priority for enriching learning experiences and promoting student progress and achievement.

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

Māori students are making good progress with their achievement. They value the inclusion of te reo Māori and aspects of Māori culture in the curriculum and school practices. In 2014, the school trialled the Māori Language Assistance Programme as part of a local cluster initiative to provide te reo Māori lessons for all students.

Māori enrichment classes are offered for students who are keen to further extend their te reo Māori. Students enjoy kapa haka, pōwhiri and performing at the annual Onepoto Festival. They value leadership opportunities and, in response to feedback from students, a Student Whānau Group has been established to enable students to be more actively involved in whānau hui.

A board member leads whānau hui to strengthen the school’s partnership with Māori whānau. Teachers have used the key documents Ka Hikitia, the Māori Education Strategy and Tātaiako, Cultural Competencies for teachers of Māori learners, to guide the school’s charter development, annual target setting and teacher appraisal processes.

Senior leaders are committed to building collaborative partnerships with the local intermediate and college to enhance Māori student success.

Next steps for the school are to:

  • develop a set of Beach Haven Primary School indicators for cultural responsiveness and for te reo and tikanga Māori to guide reviews of how well the school is supporting Māori student success and to identify areas for further review and development
  • continue to review the sustainability of the Māori Language Assistance programme, how te reo and tikanga Māori can be integrated into the school’s teaching and learning programmes and how students are being supported to develop progressive skills and knowledge as they move through the school
  • review and update the charter statement about te reo and tikanga Māori provision in the school to reflect current practices and commitment.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is well placed to sustain current good practices and continue improving its performance.

The board provides effective governance. Trustees are well informed about curriculum developments and student achievement. Board decision making is strategic and focused on improving outcomes for students. The work of the board and school leaders is well coordinated through the school’s strategic and operational planning processes.

Leadership in the school is effective. Well developed school-wide systems support the sustainability of successful initiatives. Improvement teams ensure that there is an ongoing focus on self review and continuous improvement. Key priorities have also included building leadership capability, and improving teaching and learning in mathematics and writing. Strengthening the use of evidence‑based practices to critically reflect on teaching and to accelerate student progress is also a priority.

Self review is used well to determine the school’s future direction. Ongoing critical reflection and outcomes of reviews undertaken provide clear rationale for improvements in curriculum design and teaching practice.

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 have very positive attitudes to school, are actively engaged and make good progress over time. Teachers are well supported to deliver the curriculum effectively. A settled and positive school tone, and effective governance and leadership support the learning and achievement of all students.

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

Dale Bailey
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

About the School

Location

Beach Haven, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

1223

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll

334

Gender composition

Boys      54%
Girls       46%

Ethnic composition

Māor
Pākehā
Samoan
Tongan
Niue
South Asian
Middle Eastern
Cook Island Māori
other

36%
28%
13%
  6%
  3%
  3%
  2%
  1%
  8%

Review team on site

April 2015

Date of this report

19 June 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review
Education Review
Education Review

June 2012
May 2009
December 2005