Tamahere Model Country School

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School Context

Tamahere Model Country School caters for students in Years 1 to 6. At the time of the review the school roll was 465, including 46 Māori students. Since the 2015 ERO evaluation the roll has significantly increased.

The school’s vision is for learners to be: ‘Confident can do kids – Kia maia; Honour be your guide – Kia manaaki; Together as one – Kia Kotahi’. The aim is to foster learning and achievement in a safe and supportive learning community. The school’s mission is ‘Nuturing our future – growing together: Kia atawhai ā mua – Kia tipu ngātahi’. This guides learners to be respectful, enthusiastic, academically challenged, physically fit, effective communicators, and equipped with the skills and values necessary to succeed now and in the future. 

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

  • reading, writing and mathematics.

Teachers have participated in a wide range of professional learning and development initiatives to enhance their practice. These include: Leading Learning, Accelerating Learning in Mathematics (ALiM), and Culturally Responsive Practice.

The school has a positive and responsive reporting history with ERO. It is a model country school that has a special relationship with Waikato University Faculty of Education to support large numbers of training teachers to develop and refine their practice.

The school is a member of Hillcrest Community of Learning|Kāhui Ako.

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 achieving excellent outcomes for many students and is working towards achieving equitable outcomes for some groups.

Most students achieve well in reading, writing and mathematics in relation to curriculum expectations over time.

Most Māori learners achieved well in reading. However, between 2015-2017 there has been a significant decrease in levels of achievement for Māori in writing and mathematics. In addition, significant disparity between Māori and their peers is evident in these areas. Furthermore, the achievement gap is widening in reading and is increasing significantly in mathematics and writing.

Boys achieved at comparable rates to girls in reading and mathematics in 2017. There is a significant disparity for boys in writing and this has been consistent over this time.

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

The school is effectively accelerating progress and achievement for Māori and other students who need this.

In 2018, the strategies and interventions used to accelerate learning and achievement of targeted learners have been effective in writing and highly effective in reading and mathematics for Māori and other groups of learners.

The rates of acceleration are showing that the gap in achievement in reading is narrowing for boys in relation to girls. In mathematics, the disparity is significantly reducing for Māori learners in relation to non-Māori.

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?

An extensive curriculum provides a wide variety of purposeful learning experiences that build students’ confidence to learn and succeed. The virtues and values of the school are actively modelled by all. Highly-focused learning environments support students to be actively engaged and involved in their learning.

A caring and inclusive school culture permeates the school. Leaders, teachers and students participate and learn in a highly-collaborative learning community. Student’s needs are recognised and prioritised by leaders and teachers, and purposeful strategies implemented to enhance educational outcomes for students. Trustees and staff are well supported to actively seek professional learning and development opportunities to further improve positive outcomes for learners. This strong learning culture is well established and promotes ongoing school-wide improvement.

Bicultural perspectives are being increasingly integrated throughout the school to enhance understanding and knowledge of the richness of Aotearoa, New Zealand. Significant development is evident in teachers’ and leaders’ understanding and use of te reo and tikanga Māori. Local learning contexts, histories and places of significance are woven throughout programmes for learning. A well-considered and timely strategic approach to strengthen culturally responsive practices has been developed to enhance the school’s journey.

Learners with additional needs are well supported to progress, achieve and fully participate in all aspects of school life. Reciprocal partnerships between home and school are being strengthened to maximise learning opportunities. Strong and responsive relationships are evident with external agencies to personalise learning programmes. Extensive resourcing prioritised by the school further enhances meaningful programmes to empower learners to succeed.

Robust processes and practices for tracking and monitoring of students’ progress and achievement school-wide, are evident. Teachers are strengthening their understanding about inquiry into practice to support improvement.

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

Leaders and teachers need to strengthen their understanding of effective internal evaluation to support sustainability and ongoing improvement. This should enable them to better understand the impact initiatives, innovations and interventions have on accelerating student progress and achievement.

The school should continue to enhance teacher capability and capacity to effectively use feed forward strategies to support all learners to clearly understand their learning journey. Embedding the expectations for high-quality teaching and learning within the appraisal process should lead to greater consistency schoolwide.

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.

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 three international students attending the school.

The school has a supportive environment to integrate international students and provide quality education. In 2017, the school had international students enrol for the first time. They have recognised the need to continue to review the quality of their systems and practices to provide high-quality education and support for their students.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • the collaborative learning culture that supports trustees, leaders, teachers and students to improve knowledge and learning
  • an increasingly responsive curriculum that enables students to experience rich-learning opportunities across the New Zealand Curriculum
  • the effective use and understanding of achievement information that enables strong planning for learning programmes that respond to students’ interests and needs.

Next steps

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

  • internal evaluation to determine the impact and effectiveness of programmes and initiative

  • teacher practice including continued teaching as inquiry to support reflective practice, and professional learning.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Adrienne Fowler

Director Review and Improvement Services

Te Tai Miringa - Waikato / Bay of Plenty Region

22 November 2018

About the school

Location

Tamahere

Ministry of Education profile number

1976

School type

Contributing Primary School (Years 1 – 6)

School roll

465

Gender composition

Boys 52% Girls 48%

Ethnic composition

Māori 10%
Pākehā 81%
Asian 8%
Other 1%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

Yes

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

August 2018

Date of this report

22 November 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review May 2015
Education Review May 2012
Education Review April 2009

Exemplar Review - Tamahere School - Reading - April 2019

In April 2019 the Education Review Office published and Exemplar Review on Reading please read it here

Findings

Tamahere Country Model School is providing students with a well-rounded education. Trustees, leadership and teachers are focused on improving student learning outcomes. Students experience high levels of academic and sporting success. An effective partnership with parents, whānau and the school’s community supports a positive learning environment for all students.

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

1 Context

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

Tamahere Model Country School is located south of Hamilton City and provides education for students in Years 1 to 6. The school is part of the cluster of schools working with the University of Waikato to provide learning opportunities for student teachers. The school roll has continued to grow and is currently 389 students, including 38 students who identify as Māori.

There is a strong focus on implementing an inquiry approach to learning and integrating e-learning into classroom programmes. Consultation with Māori whānau has resulted in a plan to strengthen te reo and tikanga Māori practices throughout the school. The school values its positive relationships with the local community.

Effective leadership, staffing and a strong commitment to improving students’ learning is a feature of the school. Parents and students appreciate the approachability and openness of school leaders and teachers. Students benefit from an inclusive, purposeful and positive school culture.

There has been a positive response by board and leaders to ERO’s 2012 recommendations that related to developing an agreed philosophy of teaching and learning and establishing teacher appraisal processes.

2 Learning

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

This ERO review took place at the beginning of the school year. Teachers were focused on establishing effective classroom management systems, building relationships, and increasing their knowledge of individual students.

Students are well engaged and motivated to learn. Nearly all students, including Māori students, achieve at or above National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. Progress is evident throughout the year and well reported to trustees and parents. Senior students are aware of their progress and achievement and share this information in student-led conferences with their parents and whānau. School leaders and teachers need to review aspects of the use of assessment information when reporting to parents and trustees.

Teachers are committed to raising the achievement of all students who benefit from a school-wide learning culture. They plan programmes that are focused on students’ needs and provide appropriate learning experiences for individuals and groups of students. Classroom environments are well organised and well resourced. Students requiring support with their learning are identified and provided with specific learning opportunities.

Effective and well-targeted professional development has resulted in improved teaching practice and higher levels of achievement for students. School leaders identified and ERO agreed that it is important that teachers continue to strengthen students’ ability to take responsibility for their own learning.

3 Curriculum

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

The school’s curriculum effectively promotes and supports student learning. There is a school-wide focus on literacy and mathematics. Students are benefiting from this focus on writing, which has up-skilled teachers and provided a framework for teaching. An approach to higher level thinking has been developed in the senior area and now needs to become school-wide. This should further extend and challenge students to become independent learners.

Senior managers work well as a team and are leading curriculum development. They articulate high expectations for student learning and achievement and for teachers as professionals. Leaders ensure a coordinated approach to the implementation of school goals. They need to develop a more effective appraisal process that identifies specific measurable goals, aligned with the school focus on improving strategic direction and student learning and achievement. This should enable teachers to reflect on their practice in-order to strengthen teaching and learning.

Staff have developed a curriculum overview that is focused on an inquiry approach to school-wide topics. Teachers confidently use their professional knowledge to provide programmes of learning that motivate and engage students. Their planning links students’ previous knowledge to future learning experiences. Students enjoy a wide range of opportunities for sports, arts and culture.

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

In 2014 the school reviewed success for Māori as Māori. As a result they have:

  • developed a strategic goal to embrace te ao Māori
  • established a whānau group (Te Whānau o Tamahere)
  • appointed a Māori liaison person from the community
  • developed a plan to implement te reo and tikanga Māori
  • engaged a specialist te reo teacher for staff professional development
  • employed a kapa haka teacher.

The school is committed to teaching te reo Māori as a second language and celebrating tikanga Māori.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

Tamahere Model Country School is well placed to sustain and improve its performance because:

  • the board of trustees effectively governs the school
  • the school vision underpins all school operations
  • the principal shows strong professional leadership and is focused on student well being and achievement
  • the deputy principal effectively led the school during the principal’s study leave in 2013
  • the senior management team work well together and make good use of individual skills
  • self-review processes are well developed
  • there are high levels of parent and whānau involvement in school event and activities
  • ongoing consultation with parents, whānau and staff informs school direction
  • there is a safe and inclusive learning environment.

The next steps for continual school improvement are to strengthen:

  • the appraisal processes to ensure critical inquiry into teaching effectiveness
  • students involvement in their own learning
  • the clarity of reports for parents and trustees.

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

Tamahere Country Model School is providing students with a well-rounded education. Trustees, leadership and teachers are focused on improving student learning outcomes. Students experience high levels of academic and sporting success. An effective partnership with parents, whānau and the school’s community supports a positive learning environment for all students.

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

Dale Bailey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

7 May 2015

About the School

Location

Tamahere, Hamilton

Ministry of Education profile number

1976

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll

389

Gender composition

Girls 53%

Boys 47%

Ethnic composition

Pākehā

Māori

Other European

Other

85%

6%

6%

3%

Review team on site

February 2015

Date of this report

7 May 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

March 2012

February 2009

February 2006