Martinborough School - 04/09/2019

School Context

Martinborough School is a full primary school located in the South Wairarapa district. The roll of 271 includes 78 Māori students.

The school vision is ‘learning together’ and is underpinned by the community ‘spirit’ values of striving, positivity, independence, respect, innovation and tolerance. The school acknowledges that whānau involvement is a critical component of the learning process.

In 2018 staff professional learning focused on mathematics. In 2019 the school will engage in coaching and mentoring. The school targets focus on achievement in reading, writing and mathematics.

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

  • progress in relation to strategic priorities.

The school is an active member of the Southern Wairarapa Kāhui Ako I Community of Learning.

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?

Most students achieve at or above the school’s expectations in reading, writing and mathematics with steady improvement over time.

There is large and ongoing disparity for Māori, especially boys in literacy. The 2018 data shows that Māori students made significant gains in mathematics.

Other outcomes include the school’s spirit values and wellbeing. The school has extensive anecdotal evidence to show how these are achieved.

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

There is evidence of accelerated progress for a small majority of target students, including Māori, in reading and writing. A range of support is provided for students at risk of not achieving. Students are identified and systems for tracking and monitoring are used well to support learning programmes for students.

Students with more complex learning needs have appropriate support systems in place. Their progress is well monitored against individual education plans.

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?

Students benefit from a positive and responsive learning environment. Relationships are respectful, reciprocal and focused on care and achieving success. Digital technology is well used to support learning in appropriately resourced classrooms.

Students’ ideas are valued and acknowledged. They have meaningful choices and are encouraged to take increasing responsibility for their learning. Students are on task and engaged in their learning. They demonstrate a sense of belonging and confidence in their learning and environment.

A wide range of opportunities across the curriculum supports learners to engage in many relevant contexts for learning. There are high expectations for teaching and learning which are well documented. Literacy and mathematics are prioritised. The learner profile provides clear indicators for the skills and attributes of a successful graduate.

A well-considered approach to supporting students’ transition into and through school includes the sharing of relevant information. This promotes students’ sense of wellbeing and belonging. Enrichment programmes, well supported by the community, provide further opportunities for students to explore areas of interests in depth.

Teachers are collaborative and reflect on their practice. They regularly engage in professional dialogue and learning opportunities to develop their practice that is focussed on outcomes for students. The new senior leadership team is working to promote consistent and cohesive practices and progress strategic priorities.

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

There has been significant development in redefining school values and approaches to teaching and learning. The school recognises present systems to evaluate the impact of these changes and other practices on student outcomes require strengthening. ERO affirms this. The school is working within current systems to better identify and measure the rates of progress for students within target groups.

The school acknowledges that deeper analysis and collective responsibility is required to support learners at risk of not achieving. The rates of progress of priority learners is needed to better inform leaders and trustees of the effectiveness of programmes and interventions.

While governance guidelines provide appropriate structure for the work of trustees these are not consistently implemented. Currently:

  • school operational policies and procedures need updating, reorganisation and to be made readily accessible
  • progress in relation to strategic priorities is not regularly evaluated and reported
  • agreed expectations in relation to reporting by portfolio holders are not being consistently met
  • records of board meetings are not complete or do not contain all relevant reports.

The school has strengthened its culturally responsive practices and connections with the local Māori community. It is now well positioned to use new knowledge to further extend opportunities for meaningful learning. The next development step should include:

  • meeting with the school's Māori community to share success
  • developing and make known plans and targets for improving the achievement of Māori students
  • involve whānau Māori in strategic decision making.

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 Children’s Act 2014.

4 ERO’s Overall Judgement

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO’s overall evaluation judgement of Martinborough School’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Developing.

ERO’s Framework: Overall School Performance is available on ERO’s website.

5 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • systems and processes that support student wellbeing and promote an inclusive culture and sense of belonging for students
  • extensive curriculum that involves the community and encourages student engagement, learning and achievement
  • growing staff professional capability through a strategic and coherent approach that is focused on improving outcomes for students.

Next steps

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

  • the process for monitoring legislative requirements
  • ensuring clear, robust processes for internal evaluation are implemented, including policy review to improve analysis, reporting and better measure the impact on student outcomes
  • the enactment of a strategic focus on decision making about Māori success as Māori.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified non-compliance in the school related to health and safety. To improve current practice, the board of trustees should:

  • maintain an on-going programme of self review in relation to policies.
    [National Administration Guidelines, NAG 2b]

In order to address this, the board of trustees must:

  • ensure police vetting requirements are met in relation to the appointment of non-teaching staff
  • ensure all policies and procedures are current and accessible.

Since the onsite phase of this evaluation these have been addressed.


ERO recommends that the board use development opportunities from New Zealand School Trustees Association (NZSTA).

Dr Lesley Patterson

Director Review and Improvement Services Te Tai Tini

Southern Region

4 September 2019

About the school



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Full Primary (Years 1-8)

School roll


Gender composition

Female 51%, Male 49%

Ethnic composition

Māori 26%
NZ European/Pākehā 67%
Pacific 3%
Other ethnic groups 4%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)


Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

May 2019

Date of this report

4 September 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review June 2016
Education Review April 2013