Broad Bay School - 26/05/2016

1 Context

Children at Broad Bay School say they enjoy the small size of their school and they know everyone. The school is central to the life of the community. The values of the community are reflected in the strong focus the school has on sustainability and being active in the life and wellbeing of the local environment.

A new principal was appointed in 2015 and almost all the staff are new. The principal has responded well to the challenges of leadership in a new setting. He has established and ensured an orderly and supportive environment conducive to children’s learning and wellbeing. He is promoting positive attitudes and behaviours and building relational trust and effective collaboration at every level of the school community. He proactively maintains a focus on children and their achievement. With the new teaching team he is building solid foundations for reliable curriculum assessment and delivery.

The board has provided stability through a period of significant change. In a short space of time, trustees have made a number of strategic appointments and initiated key developments. These include appointing staff, consulting with parents about the school’s vision and values, and building trustees’ capacity and understanding of their roles and responsibilities through external training. Trustees demonstrate an active commitment to an inclusive school culture and to ensuring staff and children are supported in their learning and achievement. The board funds an extra part-time teacher to keep classes small.

2 Equity and excellence

The vision and valued outcomes defined by the school are for all children to ‘Challenge themselves, Achieve their best, Respect others and the Environment’ (CARE). Other valued outcomes are to:

  • achieve the highest standards of up-to-date teaching practice
  • develop children’s strengths, promote positive skills and attitudes and support children’s aspirations
  • encourage a strong family atmosphere and sense of community
  • take advantage of the learning opportunities provided by the Otago Peninsula and wider world.

The school’s achievement information shows that most children, including Māori children, achieve at or above the National Standards. Overall, achievement in reading is highest. The 2016 targets and goals are to improve children’s performance in writing and mathematics.

In 2015, eight children were given extra support to succeed in mathematics. Six of these children made accelerated progress, two significantly so.

Since the 2013 ERO evaluation, the school has had a major turnover of staff and board members. This means attention to working with ERO’s recommendations was interrupted. Some recommendations from the last review have been successfully addressed while others are still work in progress.

3 Accelerating achievement

How effectively does this school respond to children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school responds very well to all children, including Māori children, whose learning and achievement need acceleration. Classes are small and children are identified quickly, using a range of assessment tools, if they are at risk of not reaching expectations. Teachers develop Individual Learning Plans that show in detail what the child’s learning and behavioural needs are and what strategies will be used to help them accelerate their learning. In 2016, specific targets were set for Māori children to accelerate their learning in mathematics and writing in order to reach the National Standards.

The board and new principal recognise the importance for Māori children to stand proudly in their culture, language and identity. Aspects of te ao Māori are increasingly becoming a normal part of all children’s learning at this school. This includes welcoming visitors and new children as they enrol, and learning and performing waiata.

Multiple initiatives are supporting the progress of all children who are at risk of poor outcomes. Some are leading to great success. A next step for the principal and teachers is to explicitly report to the board mid-year on the progress these children are making towards reaching the end-of-year expectations. 

4 School conditions

How effectively do the school’s curriculum and other organisational processes and practices develop and enact the school’s vision, values, goals and priorities for equity and excellence?

The school’s curriculum effectively links to the school's vision, values, goals and priorities for equity and excellence.

Children are actively engaged in learning that has relevance and meaning to them and the community they live in. The local harbour, surrounding peninsula and local community provide them with rich, authentic contexts, such as the Smith’s Creek planting and harbour dredging project. Local expertise, parent volunteers and professional experts are widely used to give breadth and depth to their learning. Children benefit from well-integrated learning of te reo and tikanga Māori in and beyond the school and meaningful experiences with the local iwi and marae.

The school’s close and ongoing relationships with other peninsula schools provide regular opportunities for children and teachers to experience valuable learning alongside their peers.

In response to the interests, needs and abilities of students, teachers have recently revised aspects of the writing, science and mathematics programmes. Teachers could better support children’s development as life-long learners by enabling them to take increasing responsibility for knowing about their progress and managing their own learning.

Teachers have rich data about their children’s learning. They plan well and in detail to meet the needs of all children, particularly those identified as needing to make accelerated progress. All children benefit from effective in-and-out-of-class support for their learning. This includes extra support provided by skilled teacher-aides and parent volunteers.

The next steps for teachers are to:

  • use the cultural background of each Māori child to benefit their learning
  • explore more intentional ways of involving parents in their child’s learning.

The board and school leaders need to continue to build a shared understanding of evaluation. This includes:

  • adopting a process that will support robust evaluation
  • developing a schedule of evaluation to cover all aspects of school operations
  • refining the strategic plan to more specifically focus on the school’s current priorities
  • improving the reporting of class and school-wide data by providing a commentary that includes identified trends and patterns.

5 Going forward

How well placed is the school to achieve and sustain equitable and excellent outcomes for all children?

Leaders and teachers:

  • know the children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated
  • respond effectively to the strengths, needs and interests of each child
  • regularly evaluate how well teaching is working for these children
  • act on what they know works well for each child
  • build teacher capability effectively to achieve equitable outcomes for all children
  • are well placed to achieve and sustain equitable and excellent outcomes for all children.

Children, including children at risk of poor outcomes, are actively engaged in their learning and are progressing and achieving well.

The board, principal and teachers are involved in ongoing professional development to build a consistent approach to assessment and to ensure reliable assessment data is gathered, used and reported.

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

6 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 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
  • processes for appointing staff
  • stand down, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions
  • attendance
  • compliance with the provisions of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014

7 Recommendation

The board, principal and teachers need to further develop, document and implement robust evaluation, and improve the strategic plan.

Chris Rowe

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern (Acting)

26 May 2016

About the school

Location

Dunedin

Ministry of Education profile number

3718

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

43

Gender composition

Girls: 21

Boys: 22

Ethnic composition

Pākehā

Māori

Other

32

5

6

Review team on site

April 2016

Date of this report

26 May 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

May 2013

February 2009

November 2006