Churchill Park School

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School Context

Churchill Park School is a full primary school with a roll of 437 students. New Zealand European/Pākehā students make up 65 percent of the roll, and Māori students five percent. There are smaller numbers of students from many different cultural groups. There are also students who are British and Irish and others from European countries, Pacific Nations, and countries throughout Asia and the Middle East.

The school promotes environmental awareness, sustainability and student citizenship. Its five strategic growth goals are Hauora (wellbeing), Ako (learning), He Tangata (people), Whanaungatanga (engagement), and Kaitiakitanga (resources).

The school’s vision is “to grow future focused global citizens, who are literate and numerate, and demonstrate the school’s learner qualities and enviroschool principles”.

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

  • reading, writing and mathematics achievement
  • progress and achievement of specific cohorts of children
  • wellbeing and pastoral care
  • attendance.

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?

The school is successfully achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for students. This can be attributed to very effective school leadership, strong community engagement, a responsive curriculum and purposeful evaluation for improving educational outcomes for students.

Over the last four years, nearly all students achieved at or above curriculum expectations in reading, writing and maths. The progress and achievement of groups of learners, including Māori and Pacific, is carefully tracked and monitored.

Students achieve very well in relation to other valued school outcomes. Students experience a curriculum that supports them to:

  • enact the school values of respect, honesty and excellence
  • be creators, communicators, problem solvers, risk takers, and team players
  • develop a strong sense of belonging based on inclusive practices
  • take ownership of their learning journey
  • foster their rights and responsibilities to participate in an ecologically global environment.

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

The school responds very well to those Māori and other students whose learning needs accelerating. School information indicates that students with additional learning needs make good progress. School processes for tracking and monitoring students who need to make accelerated progress are well developed. Leaders and teachers use achievement information to respond appropriately to these children’s individual learning needs.

The board and school leaders have a strong focus on equity and excellence. Central to the school’s inclusive learning culture is the board and leaders’ vision and commitment to enabling students who need to make accelerated progress, to experience greater success. The particular emphasis placed on valuing each child’s culture, language, and identity is promoting purposeful parent and community engagement in students’ learning, wellbeing and success.

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?

Leadership is highly effective. Senior leaders provide strong professional guidance. They promote an inclusive learning environment that values diversity. School leaders foster a collaborative team approach to successfully build relational trust with staff and the community so that learners are successful. Organisational systems and structures enable and sustain collaborative learning and decision making.

The school values and learner qualities underpin school practices. Leaders and teachers foster students’ confidence and capabilities to be active members in the school community. Productive learning partnerships between learners, teachers, teacher aides and whānau support high levels of student engagement in learning.

Māori perspectives and te ao Māori are reflected in everyday school life. This provides opportunities for Māori students to experience success as Māori, and for all students to learn about the bicultural heritage of Aotearoa New Zealand. Students, teachers and whānau collaboratively design localised learning contexts that build on students’ prior learning.

Parents and whānau are respected partners in learning. Relationships with parents, whānau and the community, to enhance student achievement and wellbeing, are well established. Parents and whānau are kept well informed about their children’s progress, and their contributions are regularly sought and valued.

Clear expectations, relevant professional learning and a distributed leadership model, successfully build teachers’ professional practice. Teachers new to the school are well supported through systematic coaching and mentoring approaches.

Students are highly engaged in an enabling and future-focused curriculum that enhances their sense of belonging and wellbeing. They have opportunities to connect their learning to real world contexts using the integrated inquiry model. Students promote and sustain the school’s culture of inclusiveness. They actively take on leadership roles and opportunities.

Trustees and school leaders have the collective capacity to sustain improvement and innovation. Charter expectations are well documented and shared with staff and whānau. Long-term planning goals and reporting schedules are aligned and regularly updated. Transparent decision-making responds to children’s learning and wellbeing needs.

Purposeful internal evaluation, inquiry and knowledge building processes are systematic and coherent across all levels of the school. Relational trust supports this collaboration. Effective communication supports the sharing of new knowledge in ways that promote improvement and innovation.

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

Senior leaders acknowledge that reporting against the school’s learner qualities, aligned to the school charter, is an area for further development.

Formalising the documentation of internal evaluation would help support leaders to gauge the effectiveness of school priorities and initiatives, as a guide for ongoing improvement.

3 Other Matters

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Education (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016 (the Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

At the time of this review there were nine international students attending the school.

Churchill Park School provides very effective pastoral care and education for international students.

4 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 Children’s Act 2014.

5 ERO’s Overall Judgement

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO’s overall evaluation judgement of Churchill Park School’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Strong.

ERO’s Framework: Overall School Performance is available on ERO’s website

6 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • leadership that collaboratively develops and pursues the school’s vision and goals for equity and excellence
  • a learning culture of respect and care that promotes student learning and wellbeing
  • a curriculum that enables students to strive for excellence
  • educationally powerful relationships with parents, whānau and the community that positively influence student learning, wellbeing and self-efficacy.

Next steps

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

  • more systematically documenting the school’s purposeful data gathering, knowledge building and decision-making processes and evidence.

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services Northern

Northern Region

17 July 2019

About the school

Location

Glendowie, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

1246

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

437

Gender composition

Girls 50% Boys 50%

Ethnic composition

Māori 5%
NZ European/Pākehā 65%
British and Irish 6%
Chinese 5%
Australian 4%
other Asian 4%
other European 4%
other ethnic groups 7%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

Yes

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

May 2019

Date of this report

17 July 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review October 2014
Education Review August 2011
Education Review June 2008

Findings

The school provides high-quality education for students. The future-focused curriculum, underpinned by Enviroschools principles, fosters students’ development as confident, independent learners and capable leaders. The board and school leaders have high expectations and a focus on continual improvement. They are responsive to and well supported by the community.

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?

Churchill Park School is a full primary school, catering for students up to Year 8. The school is at the edge of a large farm park close to Karaka Bay and the Tāmaki River. These physical features are an important aspect of the school’s focus on building students’ connection with the natural environment and their awareness of sustainability issues. Students are justifiably proud of the work they have done to achieve Green Gold Enviroschools status and of the contribution that they make to the school community.

The school benefits from a supportive, involved community, good relationships with families and a longstanding teaching team. There is a strong sense of belonging and inclusion in the school.

The board of trustees has a clear vision for students’ learning and high expectations for all areas of school operations. The school’s motto of Stand Tall, its vision of growing confident learners, and the values of respect, honesty and striving for excellence, are apparent throughout the school.

Since a fire in the school in 2011, there have been significant developments. A new building opened at the end of 2013. It contains the library and a variety of flexible learning and resource spaces. These are all well equipped with information and communication technologies (ICT). School-wide ICT access has been improved to support e-learning. Students in Years 5 to 8 are able to bring their own digital devices.

ERO’s 2008 and 2011 reports noted high-quality teaching practices and recognised the commitment and capability of the board and school leaders. Since ERO’s 2011 review, the school has increased the rigour of its self review and focused on enhancing teaching and learning so that students have greater independence in their learning.

2 Learning

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

School leaders and teachers make effective use of comprehensive, well-analysed data to enhance students’ engagement, progress and achievement. A significant majority of students achieve at or above the National Standards and enjoy high levels of achievement across the curriculum.

Specific school initiatives have been successful in promoting students’ engagement in learning and have fostered their sense of ownership and contribution in the school. Students talk confidently about their learning, progress and achievement across the curriculum, and share this information with their parents. They know about their next steps in learning, what will be needed to achieve their goals, and how to assess their progress. School systems and practices provide effective support for Year 7 and 8 students to manage many aspects of their own learning. The Year 7 and 8 students are confident, capable role models in the school.

Data are well used to monitor student progress and achievement and to identify trends and patterns. This information helps the board to make strategic decisions about targeted interventions aimed at accelerating learning for students who may not be achieving to their potential. Additional programmes and external expertise are used effectively to support students with special abilities and special learning needs. A recently introduced approach to data analysis is providing more specific, in-depth information about students’ learning progress. This should enable teachers to tailor their teaching to students’ individual needs to an even greater extent.

School leaders value the involvement and support of parents. They are currently planning a review of the school’s partnership with parents including the ways in which information about students’ learning is made available to parents. This review will recognise how ICT and formal reporting are being used to provide parents with ongoing and up-to-date information. It will also explore how parents’ knowledge and contributions inform decisions about their children’s learning.

3 Curriculum

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

The Churchill Park curriculum promotes learning in the broadest sense, very effectively. The curriculum is underpinned by Enviroschools principles. Students’ engagement and positive attitudes to learning and their high achievement levels are evidence of the positive impact of the school’s curriculum.

Students’ sense of responsibility, community and citizenship and their awareness of diversity is being promoted and fostered through the school’s future-focused curriculum. Older students make a significant contribution to curriculum development and delivery. For example, they initiate and direct projects that enhance the school environment and raise funds to support others who are less fortunate. They have good opportunities to learn through exploring and building on their particular areas of interest.

School leaders promote shared knowledge and ownership of the learning process between students, parents and teachers. Leaders and teachers are currently focusing on increasing the extent to which a commonly understood language of learning is used in conversations between students and their parents. This commitment to highlighting learning and making it more visible is a feature of teachers’ professional learning discussions. This focus on learning is increasingly apparent in every aspect of school operations.

The school’s curriculum recognises and promotes understanding about local Māori history. Students are familiar with Māori concepts and symbols, especially in relation to their Enviroschools work. They also experience tikanga Māori at school events such as the opening of the new building. Whānau have good opportunities to contribute to decisions about aspects of the curriculum that relate to Māori.

Teaching approaches are responsive to students’ capabilities and to topical, local or international events. Specific strategies and tools are used effectively to promote critical thinking and to inform decisions that result in action being taken by students, teachers or school leaders. ICT is becoming more integrated to support learning. Specialist expertise is well used to extend the range of learning experiences available to students. Teaching and resourcing initiatives are carefully planned and trialled before being introduced. Students and parents also contribute to the review of initiatives, to determine their effectiveness and identify future directions.

School processes and expectations support school leaders and teachers to engage in ongoing professional learning. Leaders and teachers work together collaboratively and take collective responsibility for successful learning programmes. A feature of leaders’ and teachers’ professional development is their use of action research to review and enhance their practice. Their networking with other professionals contributes to the school’s forward thinking.

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

Māori students benefit from high-quality opportunities for learning across the school. The majority of students achieve very well.

The board, school leaders and teachers are committed to implementing curriculum practices that promote bicultural understandings. This commitment is evident in the school environment, strategic planning, and increasingly in the curriculum. An external tutor provides a basic te reo Māori and waiata programme across the school. A Māori parent maintains regular communication with whānau Māori. She leads consultation processes and contributes to curriculum developments relating to Māori.

School leaders and teachers are currently exploring ways to implement Tātaiako - Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori Learners, more effectively. The board and school leaders agree that to enhance support for Māori students to “stand tall” as Māori they should:

  • increase understanding about what Success as Māori means for Māori students and whānau
  • consider establishing a sequential te reo Māori programme that recognises and builds on students’ prior knowledge and abilities throughout their time at the school.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is very well placed to sustain and continue building on its high-quality practices. The board and school leaders have a clear focus on maximising potential for all students by striving for excellence through professional development, improvement and growth.

The board is capable, critically reflective, and future focused. Trustees use self review and achievement information well to inform their decisions and strategic planning. They have high expectations of school leaders, teachers and students.

Effective leadership results in a school-wide, shared commitment and responsibility for student success. A collaborative approach that values each person’s strengths, contributes to consistent practices across the school.

Self review is a well established aspect of school culture. It is strategic, research based, systematic and well documented. The school leaders’ and teachers’ self review contributes to decision making and improvement. The board and school leaders have identified the benefits of better aligning school documents with the Ministry of Education documents, Ka Hikitia-Accelerating Success 2013 - 2017 and Tātaiako - Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori Learners, to enhance success for Māori students.

Whānau and students have good opportunities to contribute to school leadership, decision-making and development. The school community is supportive and involved and shares a commitment to high quality outcomes for students.

The school’s focus on continually growing students’ capacity to be self motivated, self-directed learners provides a strong foundation for their ongoing success in education and life.

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students (the Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

At the time of this ERO review there were five international students attending the school. They benefit from the school’s high levels of pastoral care and the settled, inclusive tone of the school. The students are well integrated in the life of the school and form friendships with New Zealand families. The school maintains good relationships with students’ families.

Students’ learning programmes are well planned and carefully monitored. The school’s processes for reviewing provision for international students are thorough and well documented.

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

The school provides high-quality education for students. The future-focused curriculum, underpinned by Enviroschools principles, fosters students’ development as confident, independent learners and capable leaders. The board and school leaders have high expectations and a focus on continual improvement. They are responsive to and well supported by the community.

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

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

6 October 2014

About the School

Location

Glendowie, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

1246

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

410

Number of international students

5

Gender composition

Boys 56% Girls 44%

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Asian

Cook Island Māori

Niue

other

6%

77%

6%

1%

1%

9%

Review team on site

August 2014

Date of this report

6 October 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

August 2011

June 2008

June 2005