Marshall Laing School - 07/08/2018

School Context

Marshall Laing School is a large contributing school in Mt Roskill, Auckland providing for children in Years 1 to 6. The school serves a multicultural community. Nearly two thirds of the school’s learners have English as an additional language. The roll of 578 children includes four percent who are Māori and 10 percent with Pacific heritage.

The school’s overarching mission is ‘Securing Success for Everyone’. The school charter and strategic direction are underpinned by the aspiration to develop children’s love and ownership of their learning so that they can be confident, proactive learners. This is encapsulated in the school’s motto “the Marshall Laing Learner is a motivated learner who perseveres and strives for excellence’.

Leaders and teachers regularly report to the board school-wide information about outcomes and achievement for children in reading, writing and mathematics.

The school is a member of the Lynfield Kahui Ako l Community of Learning (CoL). The principal is the foundation lead principal. The CoL is well established.

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?

Marshall Laing School is working to achieve equitable and excellent outcomes for all of its students.

Achievement information over the last three years indicates that most children achieve at expected curriculum levels in reading. The majority achieve at expected levels in writing and mathematics. However, the data show that over time there has been a lack of achievement equity, particularly in literacy for Maori and Pacific learners. This trend has become more apparent in the school’s 2017 achievement results.

In 2017, a school-wide focus on improving the achievement of boys in literacy has helped lift their overall achievement. This is attributable to teacher professional learning and development, which has resulted in teachers using specific teaching strategies and a range of support programmes to lift the achievement of boys in reading and writing.

After six years at school, the majority of children, including those who are learning English as an additional language, are achieving well in reading, writing and mathematics.

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

School leaders acknowledge that there is more work for the school to do to accelerate learning for those Māori and other students who need this. Leaders have recently introduced some key initiatives to improve the school’s success in accelerating learning. It is too soon to evaluate what impact these initiatives have had on outcomes for learners.

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 school leaders provide good leadership. A purposeful strategic plan provides the school with a clear direction. The board actively seeks input into the plan from the school community. The plan is underpinned by relevant school policies and procedures.

Children enjoy a welcoming environment and an inclusive culture that promotes their wellbeing and achievement. The school’s community is unified around the values and vision. Staff know children very well and are aware of their many and varied cultural backgrounds. Teachers design learning programmes that are respectful of cultural differences.

The curriculum reflects current best teaching practice. It is regularly reviewed and updated to meet children’s current learning needs. A newly developed school-wide te reo Māori curriculum and knowledgeable staff support teachers to deliver the bicultural curriculum. Curriculum documents are future focused and responsive. Children continue to have good access to digital technologies as a feature of the school’s curriculum.

The board, leaders and teachers have a strengths-based approach to helping children achieve their potential and create pathways for children to succeed. Recently, on the basis of credible research, they have introduced an intervention focused on improving outcomes for Maori and Pacific students.Children, parents and teachers work together to build successful, strong home/school learning partnerships. Parents appreciate and value the support of teachers and the school.

Children who require learning support are benefitting from an adapted curriculum and specialist literacy teaching. These children are closely monitored, tracked and well supported, to experience success. For example, children at all levels of the school receive literacy development support from a specialist teacher. Children who speak languages in addition to English, are also very well supported, enabling them to make good progress.

There are close relationships between the community and parents/whānau. Parents/whānau value the many opportunities they have to participate in school events and to share in their children’s learning. Strong relationships with early learning services and the local intermediate school facilitate good transition processes for children and their families.

The school has a useful appraisal system where teachers inquire into their professional practice to improve learning outcomes for children. The leadership of this well organised system is distributed and effective.

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

School leaders and the board recognise that the priority is to address existing achievement disparity for boys and for Māori and Pacific children who are at risk of not achieving. New initiatives are underway. However, achievement data are yet to reflect the outcome of these programmes.

Leaders and teachers plan to continue developing curriculum approaches that enable children to have agency in their learning. Next steps could include reviewing and evaluating how effectively inquiry learning strategies contribute to children developing a sense of ownership of their learning.

Strengthening the school’s internal evaluation and reporting practices is likely to enhance the school’s current processes designed to achieve equity and excellence. Improving processes to support deeper analysis and interrogation of achievement information is a next step. The board, leaders and teachers would then be better placed to evaluate the effectiveness of the various initiatives and strategies that are being used to accelerate the progress of children who are at risk of not achieving.

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.

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the (Pastoral Care of International students) Code of Practice 2016. At the time of this review there was 1 long stay international student attending the school.

The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code. ERO’s evaluation process confirms that the school’s internal evaluation processes are of good quality.

Marshall Laing School provides international students with pastoral care processes of a high standard. The school offers good quality English language support for learners. Children integrate well into the school’s educational programmes and are immersed in all aspects of school and community life.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • its multi-cultural school community and inclusive culture founded on whanaungatanga relationships and the celebration of cultural difference

  • school leadership that is collaborative, strengths based and builds trust with children, parents and whānau

  • a board that consults well with the school community and has a strong commitment to improving outcomes for children.

Next steps

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

  • developing curriculum approaches that help children to have greater ownership of their learning

  • evaluating the impact of initiatives aimed at accelerating the achievement of learners who are at most risk of not achieving

  • continuing to improve the school’s capacity for effective internal evaluation, inquiry and knowledge building to sustain improvement and promote parity for all children.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Julie Foley

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

7 August 2018

About the school


Mt Roskill

Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll


Gender composition

Girls 52% Boys 48%

Ethnic composition

Māori 4%
Pākehā 15%
Indian 42%
Asian 26%
Samoan 5%
Middle Eastern 4%
other 4%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)


Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

June 2018

Date of this report

7 August 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review September 2015
Education Review June 2012
Education Review December 2009