Conclusion

At least 90 percent of schools were highly or mostly effective in their overall approach, pastoral care, education programme, and social integration of students. However, only three‑quarters of schools were able to show that their international students were progressing and achieving very well or well.

When schools were judged to be less effective this was often because they did not have evidence about the effectiveness of the provisions they made.

As in ERO’s 2010 report, self review was the weakest aspect. The 2011 review found that 28 percent of schools had self review that was either partially effective or of limited effectiveness, 43 percent were mostly effective, and 29 percent had highly effective self review.

In comparison with 2010, schools that were less effective increased from 15 to 28 percent in 2011, and schools that were highly effective decreased from 50 to 35 percent.

Although the 2011 picture looks less positive than in 2010, it reflects a change in the evaluative question. In 2010, schools were judged on their review of the provisions they made for pastoral care, accommodation and programmes. In 2011, they were judged on their reviews of provisions and also their reviews of outcomes for students. Schools were less likely to be reviewing the outcomes for students than they were the provisions they made.

Although schools were usually effective in monitoring the progress of individual international students, many did not collate achievement information to monitor overall effectiveness of their programme. Collated achievement data would provide an overview on a year-by-year basis and would enable schools to review the effectiveness of teaching and other programmes, and identify trends and patterns.

Other concerns with self review related to the use of informal processes and schools not reviewing all important aspects.