Lynmore Primary School - 09/08/2012

1. Context

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

Lynmore Primary School is located in Rotorua and caters for students from Years 1 to 6. The school has a roll of 621 including 128 Māori students. An enrolment scheme is currently in place. The school has a range of educational facilities that enhance learning and teaching opportunities for students, including the Waitawa bush reserve, the gymnasium and astro turf, a heated swimming pool, library and a range of up-to-date information and communication technologies (ICT) equipment. Currently, a cultural centre is being built. High expectations for achievement and standards of behaviour are expected and evident throughout the school.

Since the previous ERO review the school has employed a new principal, the board has co-opted three new members, and the school has experienced roll growth, resulting in a new classroom. The principal and teachers maintain an open-door approach for students and parents and the school is well supported by its community.

2. Learning

How well are students learning – engaging, progressing and achieving?

Students are well engaged in learning. The school reports that at the end of 2011, most students were achieving at or above National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. The school uses a wide range of appropriate assessment tools. Information is collated, analysed and interpreted by the senior leadership team. This information is well used by senior managers and school trustees to inform strategic planning, annual planning, and target setting. The school now needs to review and refine the use of assessment tools to effectively and consistently inform planning and teaching.

There is a school-wide focus on ensuring that all students achieve National Standards for their year levels. Teachers are implementing all aspects of National Standards requirements and use student achievement data to identify students needing support and extension.

Students are becoming increasingly aware of their individual achievement and progress. However, teachers are at various stages of involving students in their learning. Further development of expectations for student participation in the sharing of success criteria and next steps for learning should increase their ability to take responsibility for their learning.

Special support and extension programmes comprise a mixture of in-class and withdrawal programmes which are well managed and delivered. The expertise of external agencies is effectively used and IDP’s (Individual Development Plans) are well designed to identify individual goals and track student progress. A specialist English as a Second Language Teacher (ESL) is providing high-quality, well-monitored programmes for students who are English language learners. Individual records show clear evidence of students’ progress as a result of the time spent in support programmes. However, information about their progress and achievement now needs to be collated, analysed and regularly reported to the board.

Parents are able to discuss their children’s progress and achievement information through student-led conferences, teacher interviews and formal written reports that effectively demonstrate progress in relation to National Standards.

3. Curriculum

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

The school’s implementation plans and other guiding documents effectively promote student engagement, learning and achievement. There is an appropriate focus on literacy, mathematics and topic studies that are motivating and challenging. Students are encouraged to develop a range of thinking, inquiry and ICT strategies.

A holistic approach underpins a broad curriculum that provides students with a wide range of learning experiences which includes sporting, cultural, social and leadership opportunities. School leaders need to continue the development of the school’s curriculum to incorporate local contexts, including Māori perspectives, and what parents and the community want for their children and the school.

Teachers have high expectations for learning and behaviour and maintain positive, respectful relationships with students. High-quality teaching practice was evident in many lessons observed by ERO. Specific teaching strategies for differentiated, instructional groups in literacy and mathematics were a feature. Classrooms are well resourced, stimulating and focused on learning. Teachers need to be more proactive in developing the Māori dimension in classroom programmes.

Senior leaders agree that there is a need to focus on developing a school-wide approach to guide teachers' use of assessment for learning. Achievement information should be analysed and evaluated to inform teaching practice and programme effectiveness.

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

The school is committed to improving its effectiveness for promoting success for Māori as Māori.

School entry information for Māori students shows that a significant number arrive at the school with less understanding of literacy and mathematics than non-Māori students. However, by Year 4, school-wide achievement information shows that most Māori students are achieving as well as non-Māori students and by Year 6 there is no discernible difference.

The board and new principal are currently engaged in consultation and self review of the school’s vision, values and school curriculum. A change management group, including whānau group members, is fully involved in this review and focused on ensuring that it reflects the school’s commitment to success for Māori as Māori. Members of these groups are experienced in education and are already contributing to the improvements needed in this area.

The school has an annual plan that targets achievement and engagement for Māori students and their whānau. The principal is strongly committed to improving the environment and learning for Māori students. The board is developing a succession plan to ensure ongoing stability for the school, which includes a focus on Māori.

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 because:

  • there is a positive reporting history with ERO
  • capable trustees have complementary skills and are developing a succession plan to ensure continuity of effective governance
  • the new principal is using her professional knowledge to implement a measured and consultative approach to whole-school review and change management
  • senior leaders are focused on improving teaching and learning
  • there is a settled and inclusive learning culture
  • parents are well engaged in student learning and the life of the school. A parent-teacher association, whānau and change groups are actively involved in school development.

The school needs to continue to develop self-review systems including:

  • staff appraisal
  • curriculum review
  • school organisational review and development, including staff culture.

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students (the Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. At the time of this ERO review there were three international students attending the school.

The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

ERO’s investigations confirmed that the school’s self-review process for international students meets requirements, but could be strengthened to include the extent to which International students are integrated within the life of the school and its community. In addition, the board should receive regular reports about the progress and achievement of International students.

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
  • stand-downs, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions
  • attendance.

When is ERO likely to review the school again?

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

Makere Smith National Manager Review Services Northern Region (Acting)

9 August 2012

About the School

Location

Rotorua

Ministry of Education profile number

1791

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

Decile1

9

School roll

621

Number of international students

3

Gender composition

Boys 52% Girls 48%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

NZ Māori

Chinese

Indian

Other European

Other Asian

Pacific

Other

62%

21%

2%

2%

5%

4%

1%

3%

Review team on site

June 2012

Date of this report

9 August 2012

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

August 2009

October 2006

February 2003

1 School deciles range from 1 to 10. Decile 1 schools draw their students from low socio-economic communities and at the other end of the range, decile 10 schools draw their students from high socio-economic communities. Deciles are used to provide funding to state and state integrated schools. The lower the school’s decile the more funding it receives. A school’s decile is in no way linked to the quality of education it provides.