Maromaku School - 24/12/2015

Findings

Students experience high quality education that is relevant to their lives. Well considered teaching practices cater for students’ diverse learning requirements. Strong connections students have with each other and the community contribute positively to their wellbeing. Parent partnerships in learning are promoted. Effective school governance and leadership is learner-focused.

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

1 Context

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

Maromaku School is situated in a rural community in the Far North and provides high quality education for its Year 1 to 8 students in a supportive, learning-focused environment. The school has maintained and built on successes outlined in previous ERO reports. The board, principal, senior leaders and staff work together effectively to meet school goals and are committed to continuous improvement.

Home/school partnerships are founded on well formed, trusting relationships. The board and staff value the contributions of parents, whānau and the community. Māori students, who make up over half the school roll, have opportunities to learn through their culture and identity.

Since the 2013 ERO review, professional learning and development, linked to the school’s involvement in a variety of school networks, has strengthened effective teaching and learning practices, particularly in writing. School developments have also increased students’ leadership of their learning.

2 Learning

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

The school uses achievement information very well to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement. The school community has a broad view of student success. The key competencies and learning areas of The New Zealand Curriculum provide meaningful contexts for students to develop their literacy and mathematical capability.

Students are highly engaged in their learning. They enjoy being at school and have a sense of connection with each other and with the community. Tuakana (older child) / teina (younger child) relationships enhance learning in classrooms and across the school. Students are confident in their capability and in their interactions with adults and their peers.

Most students achieve at and above the National Standards. The board, senior leaders and teachers closely monitor the progress of groups of learners and individuals who require targeted support. The board sets appropriate goals for raising the achievement of students who are not achieving at expected levels.

Priority is given to supporting teachers through professional learning and development (PLD) that is focused on improving student outcomes. Teachers use a variety of sources of information, including achievement data, to reflect on how they can modify their practice to cater for the school’s diverse learners. Achievement information shows that teaching and learning practices are having a positive impact on students who are not achieving at expected levels. All students have benefitted from teaching practices that have focused on ways to accelerate progress in achievement.

Māori students comprise 63% of the school roll. For 2014, most Māori students achieved at or above the National Standards, and at levels similar to their non-Māori peers. Appropriate ongoing achievement information is used effectively to establish targets for Māori students who are not achieving at expected levels.

Students with special learning needs are well supported by teachers and their peers. Their progress is well monitored and reported to parents/whānau. These students experience the breadth of curriculum offered to all students. They show their ability in different areas of the curriculum, particularly in reading.

Students understand their role in the learning process. They set learning goals with support from their teachers. The principal and board recognise that students could now be supported to identify their next steps for learning and have more opportunities to track their own progress.

Very good systems are in place to support teachers to make reliable overall teacher judgements in relation to the National Standards for reading, writing and mathematics. Written reports clearly show how well students are progressing towards and achieving in relation to the National Standards.

Partnerships with parents/whānau have been strengthened since the 2013 ERO review. Teachers communicate regularly with them about their children’s learning. These purposeful conversations with parents/whānau have contributed to accelerated progress, particularly for students who achieve below National Standards.

3 Curriculum

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

The school’s curriculum is very effective in promoting and supporting student wellbeing and learning. Warm, respectful relationships between adults and children, and between children provide a foundation for the school’s positive, inclusive culture.

The principal and teaching staff have developed a well-considered localised curriculum that celebrates the unique features of the school and community. It is based on the principles ofThe New Zealand Curriculum and helps students understand Aotearoa/New Zealand’s bicultural heritage.

Students influence the direction and scope of their learning. They have ready access to resources to support their independent and collaborative work. Teachers respect students’ contributions by responding to their interests, concerns and feedback. Their very good knowledge of students and families helps them support students’ learning and wellbeing.

Very good teaching and learning practices are consistently evident across the school. Teachers jointly plan varied programmes that support students’ holistic development. Broad, concept-based themes provide opportunities for students to draw on their different experiences, capabilities and interests. Student inquiry learning intellectually challenges students to apply their new understandings to real life situations.

Teachers’ expertise in using information and communication technologies (ICT) supports students’ learning. The board is committed to supporting the further development of the school’s infrastructure for ICT. The principal, with support from the teaching staff, plans to use electronic records for sharing student and teacher work.

The principal and teaching staff recognise that, as a next step, programmes could reflect the contribution that curriculum areas such as science and social studies can make to students’ understandings about their world. Professional learning and development about the nature of science and social inquiry would support teachers to add value to current very good teaching and learning practice.

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

The school’s bicultural practices have strengthened since the 2013 ERO report.

The school values and supports Māori student learning. They have opportunities to be secure in their identity as Māori and are confident and proud of their achievements. Classrooms reflect aspects of Māori language and culture. Teachers know Māori students well and monitor their progress and achievement closely.

Ako is part of the school’s ethos. External professional support has provided a means for teachers to enhance their culturally responsive practices. While Māori students’ culture and identity are reflected well in the curriculum and their learning, te reo Māori should be strengthened. Senior leaders are committed to supporting staff to extend their use of te reo Māori.

The school also plans to sustain a sequenced programme that builds on students’ te reo Māori capabilities as they progress through the school. This type of programme would acknowledge and extend Māori students whose parents and whānau speak te reo Māori. Strengthening links to the local hapū could contribute positively to these worthwhile planned developments.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is very well placed to sustain and improve its performance.

The strong alignment between the school’s vision, strategic direction and action plans assures the community that their tamariki are well supported in their learning and wellbeing. The capable, experienced principal is respected by staff and the community. Her curriculum leadership has a positive influence on teaching and learning across the school. The board’s learner focus and promotion of equity and excellence contributes significantly to positive outcomes for students.

Teachers and students have a variety of leadership roles and opportunities. Staff members are valued as professionals and appreciate the school’s supportive culture. They are well supported by each other, the principal and the board to develop their professional practice. Increasingly, teachers are taking a more active role in leading their professional development.

The board has good processes and capability to govern the school. Trustees work successfully with the principal and are very supportive of staff, parents/whānau and students. The school’s willingness to participate in various networks supports continuous school improvement. The board and school leaders effectively use external professional expertise and advice to inform areas for development.

ERO is confident that the board, senior leaders and staff have the capability to use the school’s well developed self-review processes to sustain their provision of high quality education. To improve practice, the board plans to evaluate ways it can contribute to enhancing outcomes for Māori students and their whānau.

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

Students experience high quality education that is relevant to their lives. Well considered teaching practices cater for students’ diverse learning requirements. Strong connections students have with each other and the community contribute positively to their wellbeing. Parent partnerships in learning are promoted. Effective school governance and leadership is learner-focused.

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

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

24 December 2015

School Statistics

Location

Kawakawa, Northland

Ministry of Education profile number

2102

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

52

Gender composition

Boys 26 Girls 26

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

33

19

Review team on site

November 2015

Date of this report

24 December 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

February 2013

October 2009

August 2006