Hapuku School - 18/04/2019

School Context

Hapuku School near Kaikoura provides education for children in Years 1 to 8. At the time of this review, the school had a roll of 18 students.

The school’s special character designation provides a bilingual and bicultural framework of learning for all students. They have the opportunity to learn in both The New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa. Te reo me ngā tikanga Māori are integrated throughout all aspects of the school’s operations.

The school’s vision is: The best of both worlds from the mountains to the sea - Ki uta ki tai. This is intended to encourage students to reach their full potential in the four areas of: ā wairua (spiritual/emotional), ā tinana (physical), ā hinengaro (academic) and ā Māori (Māori culture) so that they can achieve the best of both worlds.

The school has identified in its strategic and annual plans goals and targets that include:

  • development of the school’s special character and localised curriculum to meet learners’ needs

  • strengthening all processes, policies, procedures and documents for health and safety and strategic planning

  • increasing achievement for all students in te reo Māori.

Leaders and teachers are not regularly reporting to the board, schoolwide information about progress, achievement and learning outcomes for students.

The school maintains close links to local marae, Mangamāunu and Takahanga. A new principal was appointed in 2017.

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?

ERO is unable to verify how well the school is achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for all its students.

Information about students’ learning, progress and achievement, over time, is not being collected, analysed and reported to the board.

The school does not have processes in place to ensure that assessment practices and decisions are robust and that achievement information is reliable.

The school reported to ERO that students are achieving positive outcomes related to wellbeing and the school’s values of kaitiakitanga (guardianship), manaakitanga (caring), rangatiratanga (leadership) and kia rere te reo (let the language flow).

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

ERO is unable to verify how well the school is accelerating learning for those Māori and other students who need this.

During the onsite stage of the review, there were no documented processes or school information about:

  • identification of students who are underachieving in reading, writing and mathematics, and planned actions to accelerate their progress

  • processes for monitoring learning progress over time

  • the setting of appropriate achievement targets, and regularly reporting progress against these to the board

  • ongoing priorities and support for students whose learning needs acceleration.

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?

The board and leadership seek to serve the school community through the development of the school’s vision and goals. The school regularly participates in community events outside the school and hosts community events within the school grounds.

Leadership is focused on building relationships with whānau and the wider community to support children’s wellbeing and learning. There are regular hui to gather whānau, community and iwi aspirations for children and develop related school plans. The principal has led significant community consultation on the development of a localised curriculum.

The school supports learners to develop a strong connection with the people, places and land of te rohe o Te Ahi Kai Kōura a Tama-Ki-Te-Raki (Kaikōura). They are also encouraged to develop a love of learning through AKO (Ako, Kaha, Oranga).

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

To enable equity and excellence for all learners, and support good school operation, a sense of urgency by the board and school leadership is needed to:

  • improve the governance and leadership of the school, including regular reporting to the board about student achievement, progress towards school goals and health and safety

  • improve learning and achievement outcomes for children

  • complete and implement the school’s curriculum

  • develop and implement robust processes for assessment and decision making about student achievement

  • build capability in the school to understand and effectively use achievement data and other school information

  • develop and implement systems and processes for internal evaluation

  • ensure that the board’s compliance with its legislative obligations is well managed.

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.

4 ERO’s Overall Judgement

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO‘s overall evaluation judgement of Hapuku School’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Needs development.

ERO will maintain an ongoing relationship with the school to build capacity and evaluate progress.

ERO’s Framework: Overall School Performance is available on ERO’s website.

5 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • whanaungatanga: building positive relationships with whānau, iwi and community

  • the school’s values and support for building children’s cultural identity.

Next steps

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

  • governance, leadership and internal evaluation

  • raising student achievement

  • curriculum improvement, including building capability regarding achievement data, assessment and monitoring of student learning and progress

  • ensuring that appraisal systems and practices meet Teaching Council requirements.

Actions for compliance

During the onsite stage of the review, ERO identified areas of non-compliance. The board of trustees must:

  • review and update school policies and procedures
    [NAG 2(b)]

  • ensure full compliance with the Vulnerable Children Act 2014
    [Vulnerable Children Act 2014 Part 6 Sections 18 and 19]

  • implement an effective process for police vetting of staff, including non-teaching staff
    [Section 77A State Sector Act; Good Practice; MoE Guidelines]

  • ensure that appropriate records of all in-committee parts of board meetings are kept and stored securely
    [Good practice; Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987, Public Records Act 2005]

  • document and implement a process to manage, record and respond to complaints
    [Good practice]

  • document and implement a process and procedure for managing challenging behaviour
    [Education (Physical Restraint] Rules 2017 Clause 11; MoE Guidelines]

  • ensure compliance of the school’s appraisal system with the requirements of the Teaching Council of Aotearoa New Zealand
    [Section 77A State Sector Act; Good practice; MoE Guidelines].

Recommendations to other agencies

ERO recommends that the Secretary for Education considers intervention under Part 7A of the Education Act 1989 in order to bring about improvement in:

  • governance and leadership

  • student achievement

  • curriculum and assessment

  • internal evaluation.

ERO recommends that the New Zealand School Trustees’ Association considers providing support for improvement in:

  • governance

  • strategic planning and reporting

  • internal evaluation.

Alan Wynyard

Director Review and Improvement Services Southern

Southern Region

18 April 2019

About the school



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll


Gender composition

Girls 10, Boys 8

Ethnic composition

Māori 14

NZ European/Pākehā 4

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)


Provision of Māori medium education


Number of Māori medium classes


Total number of students in Māori medium (MME)


Total number of students in Māori language in English medium (MLE)


Number of students in Level 1 MME


Number of students in Level 2 MME


Review team on site

February 2019

Date of this report

18 April 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

May 2015

August 2011