Waimea Intermediate

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Summary

The school has a roll of 642 children, 74 of whom identify as Māori.

School leaders have addressed several of the next steps identified in the 2013 ERO report. Teachers are more effectively inquiring into their practice. The board has reviewed its policy structure. Strategies are in place to more closely monitor children’s progress and achievement. Assessment practices and internal evaluation are areas for continued development.

Since the previous ERO review, a new principal, deputy principal and several new trustees have been appointed. The school is involved in literacy professional development and is an active member of the Waimea Community of Learning|Kāhui Ako ki Waimea.

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

The school is responding well to Māori and other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration. School leaders and teachers are being proactive in their response to low National Standards achievement data for literacy and mathematics. A positive rate of improvement began in 2016.

Leaders and teachers have put in place many useful processes to more effectively enable the achievement of equity and excellence. Children’s wellbeing is a highly valued outcome and is prioritised in resourcing decisions by the board.

Leadership is highly effective in planning and managing change within a culture of trust and collaboration. Parents and the wider community are actively involved in many aspects of school life and children’s learning. Children engage in challenging and purposeful learning programmes.

To further improve equity and excellence for all learners, school leaders and teachers need to continue to build their knowledge and use of progress and achievement information. A systematic approach to internal evaluation also needs to be developed.

The school has capacity and capability to accelerate learning for all learners. However, disparity in achievement for Māori and/or other learners remains.

Leaders and teachers know the learners whose progress and achievement need to be accelerated. Leaders and teachers:

  • continue to develop and implement approaches that effectively meet the needs of each learner

  • need to improve the school conditions that support the acceleration of learners’ progress and achievement

  • continue to build teacher capability to accelerate learners’ progress and achievement.

The school agrees to:

  • develop more targeted planning to accelerate progress for learners

  • monitor targeted planning, improved teaching, and learners’ progress

  • discuss the school’s progress with ERO.

ERO will:

  • provide feedback and resources to support the development of more targeted planning.

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?

The school is responding well to Māori and other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration. Leaders are improving the effectiveness of processes, practices and partnerships to meet the needs of children whose learning needs accelerating.

Since 2016, children’s achievement in relation to National Standards has improved considerably. More improvement is needed, particularly in writing and mathematics.

The improvement in school-wide National Standards achievement has identified a growing disparity for boys and for Māori children in writing.

Many children are achieving well in reading. Involvement in a Ministry of Education literacy intervention for reading shows very good levels of acceleration for those children involved.

Teachers are building their capacity to moderate assessment decisions, particularly in writing. Leaders and teachers need to continue to strengthen teachers’ understanding of assessment against the National Standards to ensure that judgements about children’s learning are reliable and consistent.

The school has improved its systems and practices and the way it works with parents in responding to children with additional needs. It is now in a better position to support these children and ably report on their progress, achievement and wellbeing.

School conditions supporting equity and excellence

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

Many useful processes have recently been introduced to effectively enable the achievement of equity and excellence.

Children engage in challenging and purposeful learning programmes that relate to real-life contexts, issues and experiences. Parents, children and staff contribute to a curriculum that reflects agreed values, incorporates bicultural perspectives and is inclusive. Parents and the wider community are involved in many aspects of school life and the curriculum.

School leaders have built a culture of trust and collaboration. Children have many opportunities to learn and make choices in well-resourced environments. Students’ voice is actively sought and acted upon, enabling school leadership and teachers to be informed about their views on a range of matters. A positive school culture is evident. Māori and other children surveyed commented that they feel they are listened and responded to, and respected.

Leadership and management of change is highly effective. Priorities that impact on children’s learning and wellbeing are continuously promoted, resulting in well-considered actions. Teachers’ leadership is being actively promoted and strengthened. The pace of change is strategic. It is well supported by cohesive organisational processes and practices that assist teachers to support children whose learning needs accelerating. Teachers are increasingly reflective about the best ways to assist children to accelerate their progress. There are examples of highly evaluative thinking demonstrated by leaders and teachers.

High priority is placed on children’s wellbeing. A team approach to meeting children’s needs is building collaboration among staff. Several useful initiatives are in place, including board funding for extra teaching release and the employment of a social worker.

Teachers’ professional learning and development is purposeful and is helping to build teachers’ capability to enable equity and excellence for children. Teachers are working together to inquire more deeply into the effectiveness of their practice and make improvements to their teaching.

The board is responsive and has significantly increased resourcing to better meet children’s learning and wellbeing needs.

Sustainable development for equity and excellence

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

To further improve equity and excellence for all learners, the school needs to continue building their understanding and use of progress and achievement information. School improvement priorities include:

  • extending teachers’ understandings and consistency in National Standards’ judgements about children’s learning
  • reporting more clearly to parents about National Standards’ achievement
  • trustees scrutinising progress and achievement reports more closely.

The board and school leaders need to place a more deliberate and strategic focus on targeted planning and teaching practices to promote acceleration and reduce the disparity for Māori children.

School leaders need to strengthen internal evaluation so that it is more systematic and consistent across the school.

The board and school leaders need to continue to build staff and children’s digital capability to better manage information and increase children’s understanding and ownership of their learning.

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.

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to theEducation(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 was one international student attending the school and no exchange students.

The school has reviewed and updated its policies and procedures in line with the new Code. The school is closely monitoring and supporting the pastoral care, integration and learning for its international student.

Actions required

The school’s appraisal process is compliant. To further improve practice, the school should keep a summative overview showing whether expectations have been met for all staff.

Going forward

How well placed is the school to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it?

The school has capacity and capability to accelerate learning for all learners. However, disparity in achievement for Māori and/or other learners remains.

Leaders and teachers know the learners whose progress and achievement need to be accelerated. Leaders and teachers:

  • continue to develop and implement approaches that effectively meet the needs of each learner

  • need to improve the school conditions that support the acceleration of learners’ progress and achievement

  • continue to build teacher capability to accelerate learners’ progress and achievement.

The school agrees to:

  • develop more targeted planning to accelerate progress for learners

  • monitor targeted planning, improved teaching, and learners’ progress

  • discuss the school’s progress with ERO.

ERO will:

  • provide feedback and resources to support the development of more targeted planning.

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

Recommendations

ERO recommends that the school seek further support from the New Zealand School Trustees Association to bring about sustainable improvements in the board’s stewardship role of scrutinising progress and achievement information in relation to the National Standards.

Dr Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer - Southern (Te Waipounamu)

5 October 2017

About the school

Location

Richmond

Ministry of Education profile number

3233

School type

Intermediate

School roll

642

Gender composition

Girls 51%: Boys 49%

Ethnic composition

Pākehā 81%

Māori 12%

Pacific 1%

Other 6%

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

August 2017

Date of this report

5 October 2017

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review February 2008

Education Review March 2011

Education Review December 2013

1 Context

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

Waimea Intermediate School in Richmond, Nelson caters for Years 7 and 8 students from a large number of urban and rural contributing schools. Of the 603 students on the roll, 53 identify as Māori.

The physical environment has been thoughtfully developed over the years. Both the indoor and outdoor areas are conducive to learning. Students respect their environment. The school utilises the shared campus with Waimea College and Henley Primary School to facilitate reciprocal student visits and ease transitions for learners into and out of the intermediate school.

The modules programme on Friday enables students to participate in a wide range of activities aimed at extending their learning. There are also many opportunities outside the classroom to experience and develop skills and knowledge.

The charter’s vision is supported by a set of values, RISE (respect, integrity, self management, empathy) which are evident in the relationships between students and teachers. Respect is universal. Routines are well-established and students respond positively to high behavioural expectations. Strategies such as restorative practice and a team approach to student wellbeing have resulted in improved student behaviour and reduced stand-downs and suspensions.

A Ministry of Education Student Achievement Function Practitioner has been working in the school to assist with evidence-based practice and develop teaching as inquiry, with particular focus on mathematics.

The school has a very good ERO reporting history.

2 Learning

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

The school uses student achievement information in a range of ways to make positive changes to students’ engagement and achievement.

Nationally standardised tests inform overall teacher judgements. On entry, assessment is undertaken by the intermediate and used to identify students whose achievement level is of concern. Teachers group students and usually differentiate teaching accordingly.

School wide professional development to improve the teaching of writing has been adopted to meet the needs of students whose writing skills need considerable development.

Currently teachers are gathering, discussing and reflecting on a variety of information as part of their inquiry process. Teachers are employing a greater range of purposeful teaching strategies as a result of professional learning and development. As some teachers rely on data from standardised testing at set intervals, they have insufficient evidence to evaluate the effectiveness of strategies they use. With more detailed analysis of data, and closer tracking of priority students, more positive changes could be made.

3 Curriculum

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

The school has consulted widely to develop an aspirational curriculum. It embraces the local context and is designed to provide a broad education around relevant, engaging topics. Teachers are working collaboratively to plan ways to manage the integrated programme within the given timeframes. Senior leaders recognise the need to maintain a focus on reading, writing and mathematics. They expect teachers to teach and integrate the same concept in multiple settings.

As the curriculum becomes embedded, it will be timely to review the impact to ensure it is meeting the anticipated outcomes.

Students are highly engaged and interact positively. They are enthusiastic, active and willing learners. The concept of WISE (wonder, inquire, engage, self reflect) learners is becoming embedded as teachers fully understand the process of investigation and provide more purposeful learning directions. All teachers should share the appropriate learning progressions with students.

Teachers have received valuable professional development to improve their skills in teaching mathematics. The school recognises that this is an ongoing area for development so that all teachers are fully conversant with teaching mathematics.

Good practice is evident where teachers plan collaboratively and are reflective. Lessons are well paced and these teachers actively work to build and maintain a positive, constructive learning environment. Such teaching practice is not consistent syndicate or school wide.

The school is well resourced. Students and teachers use information and communication technologies to support learning. Modern facilities in the technology department encourage creative teaching and learning.

Waimea Intermediate is an inclusive school. Students with high needs are well supported by the special education needs coordinator (SENCO), the teachers and the well prepared teacher aides. The students are making good progress towards meeting their individual education plan goals.

There are opportunities for all students to learn te reo me ngā tikanga Māori. Lessons are planned to be part of the integrated curriculum. The module approach enables students to participate in kapa haka and also to learn te reo Māori at different levels.

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

Success for Māori as Māori is well promoted. Students are encouraged to be leaders and, through a deliberate tuakana teina strategy, their high quality leadership is sustained. Kapa haka students perform with pride and feeling. They practise under expert tutelage.

The school conducts regular hui to engage with Māori. The principal is responsive to suggestions and is continuing to explore ways to further engage whānau.

Staff are supported to grow and develop their understanding of te reo me ngā tikanga Māori. Teachers recognise that they are on a continuum of expertise in this area.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school charter has been collaboratively developed with targets that focus on increasing student achievement rates of progress. The principal and lead teachers regularly inform the board about the delivery of the curriculum and progress towards meeting the targets. Although targets address particular areas of underachievement, defining the groups and the degree of improvement sought should be more detailed.

The school is well governed. The board has adopted the practice of staggered elections. This facilitates continuity. The recently elected trustees are mostly experienced board members and are familiar with the role of governance.

Performance appraisal is affirming and meets legal requirements. However, implementation is variable and not always rigorous. A more focused documented set of expectations of teachers, including cultural competencies, would make the process more useful.

Area for development

The next step for trustees and school leaders is to continue to develop sound evidence-based self review that contributes to improving the quality of practices school wide and further raising student achievement.

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. At the time of this review there was one international student attending the school.

The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

ERO’s investigations confirmed that the school’s self-review process for international students is thorough.

International students generally stay for a short time as part of a group experience. The local college usually takes responsibility for the welfare of the students out of school time. Often the students transition to the college at the end of Year 8. Good communication between these schools facilitates appropriate care of the students.

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.

In order to improve practice, the board should review all policies and procedures to ensure that these reflect current practice.

When is ERO likely to review the school again?

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

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services

Central Region (Acting)

20 December 2013

About the School

Location

Richmond

Ministry of Education profile number

3233

School type

Intermediate (Years 7 to 8)

School roll

603

Number of international students

1

Gender composition

Male 51%

Female 49%

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Other ethnic groups

10%

88%

2%

Review team on site

September 2013

Date of this report

20 December 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

March 2011

February 2008

March 2005