Bromley School - 01/12/2015

1 Context

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

One of the strongest features of Bromley School is its Reggio-Inspired philosophy that increasingly defines the school’s curriculum, relationships and teaching and learning. The high value placed on respecting and listening to students, providing meaningful and creative learning opportunities, as well as ensuring that learning is child-led and holistic are characteristics of this philosophy in action at the school.

The school’s significant roll growth over the last three years has resulted in increased staffing, a growing diversity amongst students and challenges regarding space. The board is in the process of establishing an enrolment zone and is at the planning stage of major building redevelopment. The board, senior leaders and staff continue to effectively manage the ongoing impact of the Canterbury earthquakes for many students, their families and the community.

Located separately on the school’s grounds is a class from a local special school and a kindergarten. The school has a number of students with high learning needs for whom they receive additional funding and support. Positive school, parent and community relationships result in the school receiving a range of practical support from a variety of sources and agencies.

The board, leaders and staff have retained the strengths identified in the 2012 ERO review. They have addressed the recommendations made at that time and made good progress towards implementing most of them.

2 Learning

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

The school makes very effective use of achievement information to foster student progress and achievement. This effectiveness is most evident in the:

  • clear systems in place to identify, track and monitor learning needs and progress at class, syndicate and school-wide levels
  • sound processes for using achievement information to set targets and develop useful action plans
  • appropriate analysis and reporting of trends and patterns to the board, and trustees’ well- considered decision making regarding this information
  • regular sharing of a variety of achievement information with students and their parents, so they are well informed about progress and achievement.

The board and school leaders, along with teaching and support staff, have established strong structures and systems for giving additional support to students who are most at risk of underachieving. This support is very well coordinated, targeted and monitored. It includes a wide range of needs-based interventions and the extensive use of external agencies and expertise.

Area for review and development

School leaders should extend the range of achievement information they analyse and report to the board. This information should include the impact of additional learning support and other interventions on students’ progress and achievement.

3 Curriculum

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

The school’s curriculum effectively promotes and supports students’ learning. This is most evident in an overall positive trend in school-wide achievement over time and in the very good levels of student engagement in learning. As well, many younger students make accelerated progress in literacy, including oral language, in their early years at the school.

Student achievement is highest in writing. Strong provisions exist for continuing to support students’ oral language development. The school is giving necessary priority to improving student achievement in mathematics.

Teaching programmes give students suitable opportunities to experience success across the curriculum. Students take part in many interest-based, “hands-on” activities that require problem solving and critical thinking. The school’s philosophy is very evident in many classrooms that are vibrant and high-interest learning environments.

Many examples of high quality teaching exist within the school. School leaders know where the quality of teaching must be improved. Teachers and students benefit from the interesting range of resources for teaching and learning. The increasing availability and use of digital technologies is part of a planned approach to further promote learning. Leaders use a range of deliberate strategies to help ensure class placements support positive outcomes for all students.

Students learn in positive, inclusive and respectful learning environments. Supportive relationships and interactions, along with the use of strategies that promote calm and settled behaviour, help to ensure that students can focus on their learning.

The school’s pastoral care and strengths-based approach to the wellbeing of students and their families are notable strengths. Leaders and staff act as strong advocates for students and their families. School resources, along with community support, ensure the people, processes and services are in place to respond effectively to existing and emerging needs.

Links with local schools and other early childhood centres support students’ successful transitions to school.

Area for review and development

Senior leaders should continue to extend the school’s curriculum documents to ensure cohesion and clear identification of:

  • the school’s unique context, philosophy, vision and values
  • expectations and guidelines for high quality teaching and learning that better reflect the best of what happens across classrooms and learning areas.

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

The school is increasingly promoting educational success for Māori, as Māori, particularly through the initiatives introduced in 2015. School wide, Māori students are generally achieving well in literacy and mathematics and are making positive progress over time.

Areas of progress include:

  • consultation with whānau and iwi to establish a well-developed action plan that identifies goals and priorities for improvement
  • having a school kaumatua, re-instigating kapa haka and the increased focus on integrating tikanga and te reo Māori into classroom programmes
  • the appointment of a leadership group to take responsibility for current and future developments.

How effectively does the school promote education success for Pacific students

Progress is also evident in the way the school is promoting education success for Pacific students, especially in regard to developments that have occurred in 2015. For example:

  • a well-developed action plan that identifies goals and priorities for improvement has been established
  • increased staffing is helping to provide more support for Pacific students’ learning and cultural identity
  • school leaders are strengthening links with the Pacific community
  • the school is making greater use of external support and expertise to guide their actions.

Area for review and development

The board and school leaders should now include in the school’s annual review cycle an evaluation of progress towards goals for Māori and Pacific students.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is well placed to sustain and improve its performance. The board and leaders are effectively promoting the school’s philosophy. The principal and senior leadership team have created a culture of collaboration and continuous improvement. This is also evident in the two, well-led teaching syndicates. Decision making at board and leadership levels is clearly focused on promoting students’ learning and wellbeing.

Leaders are aware of key areas that need improvement and are actively addressing these. Efforts to raise achievement through accelerated student progress are being supported through well- considered teaching and professional development initiatives.

The school is well governed by a stable, proactive board. Trustees understand their roles and responsibilities through their own experiences and ongoing board training. They actively support initiatives linked to promoting equity and excellence, particularly those focused on raising student achievement and promoting student wellbeing.

A positive partnership is evident between the board and senior leaders. The school’s ongoing programme of self review provides the board with a useful range of information. Trustees are increasingly using review reports to scrutinise the work of the school and, where necessary, seek more information to support their decision making.

The board’s current in-depth review of its charter, including its strategic and annual plans, is timely. Sound consultation processes are being used to support the review process.

Professional development is becoming increasingly comprehensive and is appropriately targeted at both collective and individual staff needs. Professional learning opportunities include workshops and achieve a good balance between the use of internal and external expertise.

Areas for review and development

The board and ERO agree that addressing the following priorities for review and development will place the school in an increasingly stronger position to sustain and improve its work. These include:

  • the principal and senior leadership team reviewing leadership roles and responsibilities to ensure the spread of responsibilities is both greater and more equitable
  • continued emphasis on building leadership capacity across the school
  • the board continuing its review of the school charter and related plans to ensure increasing clarity about priorities and robust evaluation of outcomes
  • the board and school leaders continuing to strengthen and extend the scope of the school’s ongoing programme of self review.

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’s philosophy is clearly evident in curriculum programmes and learning environments that promote creativity, curiosity and exploration. The positive and inclusive school culture is purposefully focused on students’ learning, wellbeing and engagement. Students have suitable opportunities to achieve success across the curriculum.

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

Chris Rowe

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern (Acting)

1 December 2015

About the School

Location

Christchurch

Ministry of Education profile number

3302

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll

342

Gender composition

Boys 54% Girls 46%

Ethnic composition

Pākehā 47%

Māori 34%

Cook Island 1%

Samoan 8%

Tongan 2%

Other Pacific 2%

Other 6%

Special Features

A satellite class of Ferndale School is located within this school's grounds.

Review team on site

October 2015

Date of this report

1 December 2015

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review October 2012

Education Review June 2009

Education Review March 2006