Maraeroa School - 21/10/2016

1 Context

Maraeroa School is a Years 1 to 6 primary school in Porirua East. At the time of this ERO review there were 116 students on the roll, 31 of whom identified as Māori and 81 as Pacific.

Since the September 2013 ERO review, a new principal has been appointed and there have been further changes of teaching staff.

The school continues to be part of the Ministry of Education Positive Behaviour for Learning (PB4L) initiative. A focus on wellbeing and pastoral care underpins the school culture.

Recent board elections have resulted in three new trustees. Re-elected trustees provide useful continuity for the board.

The school is part of the Porirua East Community of Learning.

2 Equity and excellence

The vision and valued outcomes defined by the school for all children are for them to be active learners, confident in what they can do and what they can be. They will be resilient, strong in their own culture and respectful of others. The vision is underpinned by values of honesty, kindness, respect, perseverance and high expectations.

The school’s achievement information shows that, at the end of 2015, most students were below or well below the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. Leaders recognise that the learning of Māori, Pacific and boys needs to be accelerated to raise their achievement.

The mid-2016 data shows improvement for some students whose learning was targeted for acceleration in reading and writing. School reflection processes are being developed to include thinking about reasons for progress, or lack of it, so teachers know what is working well for each targeted individual.

Guidance for assessment practice has been strengthened. Teachers use a range of assessment tools. Their work with moderation of writing has increased consistency of practice and confidence in their judgements about students' progress and achievement. The progress and consistency tool (PaCT) is being considered to further support the reliability of judgements.

Charter targets focus on all students who are below in relation to the National Standards in the three areas. These targets should be more specific about expected acceleration, to assist with monitoring progress, assessing achievement, evaluating effectiveness and responding to next learning needs.

Initiatives have been implemented to support teaching and learning. Further work is needed to ensure these appropriately respond to and accelerate student progress and achievement.

Since the previous ERO evaluation the school has:

  • engaged in schoolwide professional development in mathematics and literacy
  • strengthened assessment and culturally responsive practices
  • increased parent, whānau and community engagement in the school
  • worked collaboratively to promote a positive school culture
  • strengthened transition-to-school processes and relationships with contributing early learning services.

3 Accelerating achievement

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

Trustees, school leaders and staff are aware of the urgency to accelerate Māori students' achievement. Teachers know the needs of each student. An improvement plan has been developed and implementation of strategies is at an early stage. Progress in reading, writing and mathematics is monitored and some shifts in achievement are evident.

Consultation with Māori students, parents and whānau has raised the profile of te ao Māori in the school. The school reports that student engagement in learning has increased as a result of this work.

A key next step is to continue to implement, refine and evaluate the effectiveness of strategies used to lift Māori student achievement and increase whānau participation and partnerships for learning.

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

There is a strategic focus on raising the achievement of Pacific students. Progress and achievement in relation to National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics is well tracked and monitored. Those students whose achievement requires acceleration are identified. Teachers design learning tasks centred on students' culture and experiences.

Teachers are engaged in professional learning and development in mathematics which is specifically designed to accelerate the achievement of Pacific learners. The school reports that an outcome of this initiative is an increase in contribution to and ownership of learning for all students.

Students with additional learning needs are clearly identified. Staff work in collaboration with families, whānau and external agencies to support students' participation and engagement in learning. External resourcing is used appropriately.

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 targets for equity and excellence?

The board, school leaders and teachers are focused on accelerating learning for all students. They are beginning to develop a shared understanding of the importance of equity and excellence of student outcomes. The school is in the early stages of implementing systems and processes that are likely to support ongoing improvement.

Interactions are respectful and school tone is positive. There is a deliberate focus on encouraging and supporting students to be active learners. Students work collaboratively and have fun as part of the learning process.

Leaders and teachers are working collaboratively to develop a curriculum document that provides clear expectations and supports consistency of practice for assessment, teaching and learning. It should also include:

  • clear alignment to The New Zealand Curriculum principles, values and key competencies
  • guidelines for being responsive to community aspirations for their children's outcomes.

The principal acknowledges that completing the document is a priority.

Trustees, leaders and teachers actively promote, encourage and provide opportunities for parents, whānau and the community to participate in their children's learning. Student reports to parents provide useful information about how they can help at home. Continuing to strengthen partnerships for learning remains a priority.

Teachers are reflective and beginning to inquire into the effectiveness of their teaching strategies. They are provided with opportunities to develop their professional practice. Processes for appraisal and for endorsement of teachers' practising certificates should continue to be developed to ensure they are focused on evidence-based reflection and judgements based on the Practising Teacher Criteria.

Trustees are committed to further developing their understanding of their roles. They are regularly informed about student achievement, school practices and operation. They use this information to prioritise resourcing to improve teaching and learning.

The principal is establishing a supportive environment conducive to student learning and wellbeing through:

  • establishing a cohesive teaching team
  • strengthening community collaboration and partnerships to promote student learning.

There is a well-considered approach to change and improvement. Trustees, leaders and staff need to be more clear about: desired outcomes for students; measures of success; and knowing what is working for students' educational success and what is not.

Trustees, leaders and teachers should further develop their understanding and use of internal evaluation. This should increase their effectiveness in promoting equity and excellence for all students.

5 Going forward

How well placed is the school to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it?

Leaders and teachers:

  • know the children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated
  • need approaches that effectively meet the needs of each child
  • need to ensure the school is well placed to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it.

To improve learning outcomes and achievement trustees, leaders and teachers should continue to establish systems and processes to raise the quality of teaching and learning, including:

  • completing curriculum review and development
  • further refining target setting to focus on those students most at risk of not achieving
  • embedding the appraisal process
  • strengthening understanding and use of internal evaluation.

Action: The board, principal and teachers should participate in an internal evaluation workshop. They should use this workshop, the internal evaluation: Good Practice exemplars of good practice and the School Evaluation Indicators to address the findings of this evaluation and develop more targeted planning that includes a significant focus on building teacher capability to accelerate learning and achievement.

As part of this review ERO will continue to monitor the school’s planning and the progress the school makes.

ERO is likely to carry out the next full 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

Trustees, leaders and teachers will continue to strengthen systems and processes for curriculum delivery, target setting, appraisal and internal evaluation to raise the achievement of all students. 

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

21 October 2016

About the school

Location

Porirua East

Ministry of Education profile number

2903

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll

116

Gender composition

Male 50%, Female 50%

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pacific

Other ethnic groups

27%

70%

3%

Review team on site

August 2016

Date of this report

21 October 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

October 2013

September 2011

August 2008