Island Bay School - 19/09/2018

School Context

Island Bay School is located in southern Wellington, for students from Years 1 to 6. Of its roll of 450, most are Pākehā, 10% are Maori and there are small numbers of students from a range of other ethnic groups, including Pacific.

The school has recently developed a new vision and values through consultation. The vision is ‘to nurture holistic learners in a broad, inquiring curriculum that fosters a love of learning and cultivates creative minds’. The newly developed WE CARE values of whanaungatanga, empowered, curious, creative, collaborative, critical thinkers are promoted.

Schoolwide targets for 2018 are: to continue the focus on Māori student achievement; and general student achievement in mathematics and science.

Leaders and teachers regularly report to the board, schoolwide information about outcomes for students in the following areas:

  • achievement in reading, writing and mathematics
  • acceleration and achievement for Māori students
  • interventions and programmes implemented to support learners at risk
  • health, safety and wellbeing.

There have been a number of recent changes to the leadership team and to trustees. Property developments have occurred to provide collaborative teaching hubs within the school.

Ongoing professional learning and development (PLD) has been undertaken to support the review of curriculum and culturally responsive practice. Current PLD is supporting the teaching of science and leadership development.

Island Bay School is a member of the South Wellington Kāhui Ako.

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?

High levels of achievement in reading, writing and mathematics are sustained. Māori student achievement has continued to improve over time and includes a significant improvement in achievement in writing in 2017. Children achieve well in the senior levels of the school in reading and writing and many students who are achieving at expectations make accelerated progress to achieve above expectations. Pacific children achieve well.

The school recognises boys’ achievement in writing continues to be less than girls. This is an ongoing area for improvement.

Students requiring additional learning support are provided with well-considered and co-ordinated provision to promote their learning and progress.

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

The school promotes accelerated progress for those Māori and other learners at risk, including children with specific learning needs. There are high expectations for all Māori to achieve well as competent and capable learners. School data indicates that, in the main, progress is accelerated for those identified as needing this.

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 school has a collaborative culture that supports a well-established community of learners. Relational trust, shared understandings and innovation are fostered. Staff have good access to a range of PLD to support theories of practice, responsive teaching and improvement. Capability is built through regular opportunities for collective learning and reflection. Teachers’ strengths and contributions are valued and supported.

Children demonstrate enjoyment in learning and participate with interest and enthusiasm. The school’s vision and values are effectively promoted through the recently refreshed curriculum. Inquiry-based and integrated approaches to learning encourage students to make meaningful connections, empower them to lead their learning and develop self-efficacy and agency. Curriculum development is well informed by current research and teachers’ interests and strengths. Teachers are working to build their cultural competencies to deliver a curriculum that promotes a local base and responds to the aspirations of whānau Maori.

Teacher practice is responsive to student needs, strengths and interests. Good systems are in place for gathering, sharing and using information about students’ learning. Students have opportunity to understand their achievement and learning. Families’ involvement in their children’s learning includes online platforms for sharing and providing feedback on work. Student progress is supported by target setting and the regular monitoring of the learning and progress of all students at risk in their learning.

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

As a school of continuous improvement, teachers and leaders are developing more useful systems to assess meaningfully across the curriculum and to show progress and acceleration. The school is refining reporting and inquiry about rates of acceleration for all learners at risk, to inform understanding of successful strategies and outcomes.

The school has continued to build responsiveness to Māori learners and their whānau. Māori voice is actively sought to inform decision-making to enrich provision. A Māori learner profile has been developed in consultation with families to determine and enact aspirations for their children. A next step is to more systematically integrate actions through a strategic approach to development, leadership and improvement. Further empowering whānau to lead these developments should be a key consideration.

A sound framework for appraisal has been developed that is appropriately focused on learner and strategic priorities. Improvements to consistency of implementation and robustness of appraisal and teacher inquiry are required. This should further support teacher improvement and help to identify the effectiveness of strategies and practice in promoting learning and progress.

There is a clear focus on improvement and development to align with the vision for learning. Views of students and families are sought to inform school direction and development. Continuing to develop shared understandings and systematic internal evaluation processes should support the growth in knowledge about impact of implemented actions and further guide decision-making and ongoing improvement.

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.

Areas for improved compliance practice

To improve current practice, the board of trustees should:

  • ensure policies and procedures are comprehensive and reviewed in a timely manner.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • systems for gathering, sharing and using information about students’ learning that supports their progress

  • a curriculum that promotes meaningful participation and learning

  • a community of learners that fosters innovation and improvement.

Next steps

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

  • systematic integration of actions to promote success as Māori through a strategic approach to development, leadership and improvement to promote meaningful participation of whānau

  • appraisal and teacher inquiry to promote consistency and improvement

  • continuing to develop internal evaluation processes and practices.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

ERO is likely to carry out the next external evaluation in four-to-five years.

Alan Wynyard

Director Review & Improvement Services Central

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

19 September 2018

About the school



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll


Gender composition

Girls 50%, Boys 50%

Ethnic composition

Maori 10%
Pākehā 75%
Pacific 5%
Other ethnic groups 10%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)


Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

July 2018

Date of this report

19 September 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review Feb 2014
Education Review July 2009
Education Review May 2006