Martinborough School - 16/04/2013

1 Context

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

Martinborough School is a full primary school catering for students in Years 1 to 8. It is located centrally within the widespread community. The positive school tone and culture make for a productive teaching and learning environment. The grounds are attractive, extensive and well maintained. Two new classrooms are to be provided by the Ministry of Education as a result of roll growth. There are currently 234 students enrolled, 28% of whom identify as Māori.

The board of trustees and the newly appointed principal have led a thorough review of the vision and values that underpin the strategic direction, school systems and classroom programmes. New initiatives in teaching practice, assessment and appraisal were introduced from the start of the 2013 school year.

Classrooms have been refurbished and upgraded, and the board has continued to invest in information and communication technologies. Student wellbeing and learning is well supported by school and local community initiatives.

2 Learning

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

School leaders have recently introduced new processes and systems to more effectively gather, analyse and use student achievement information. This should enable teachers to target individual learning needs, measure progress and make accurate overall teacher judgements in relation to the National Standards.

Schoolwide achievement data is used to identify and consider recent trends, establish charter targets and identify areas in need of greater focus for teacher professional development. Data from previous years is not robust. The school is now better placed to use baseline information to monitor and evaluate progress and trends in student achievement.

Students with specific learning needs are identified and receive additional support through a number of programmes.

Senior leaders have identified, and ERO's external evaluation affirms, that the priorities for ongoing review and development include:

  • improving the range, validity, reliability and depth of achievement data analysis
  • effectively using data at classroom level to address the specific needs of students and evaluate the effectiveness of teaching programmes
  • growing teachers’ capacity to encourage and enable students to take increasing ownership of their own learning.

3 Curriculum

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

The school has reviewed and redeveloped its broad, comprehensive, skills-based curriculum. This document effectively integrates values, key competencies and learning areas set in relevant local contexts. There are clear expectations for planning, achievement and assessment for engaging students in their learning. The curriculum document provides detailed guidance to teachers in meeting the needs of students at syndicate and classroom level.

Leaders and teachers have high expectations for students’ involvement, learning and behaviour. Positive, affirming relationships and attractive learning environments promote settled classes where students are on task and enjoy their learning. Students have many opportunities to achieve and celebrate success in a wide range of sporting and cultural activities and events and, in the senior school, to develop their leadership skills.

The principal and senior teachers, with guidance from an external consultant, are working towards a shared understanding of effective teaching practice based on using achievement information to improve student learning, progress and achievement. This new approach links teachers’ goals and professional development with the more robust teacher appraisal process, based on coaching and mentoring.

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

School leaders and trustees are committed to improving Māori student achievement and growing a partnership with whānau and iwi. There are specific, appropriate strategic goals and targets to improve the achievement of Māori students. The board has co-opted a Māori representative who is proactively liaising with whānau and the wider Māori community. The kapa haka group has been reintroduced and revitalised to engage students and acknowledge their cultural identity. Closer links are being developed with the local marae.

The board and managers recognise the importance of acknowledging and appreciating Māori students’ culture and values in the school and the need to increase the use of culturally responsive and relevant Māori perspectives and contexts in classroom programmes.

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. Factors influencing this include:

  • a committed, enthusiastic and effectively led board of trustees, which has consulted widely with the community to develop the school’s strategic plan
  • a clear vision translated into strategic goals and high expectations for improving learner progress and achievement
  • effective leadership from the principal supported by a restructured leadership team
  • a new coaching and mentoring system to enhance staff development
  • the positive and affirming school culture that is welcoming and inclusive
  • high levels of parent support and participation in school activities and events
  • a growing culture of reflective practice amongst teachers to improve student progress and achievement.

School leaders and the board have identified the need to continue to develop and strengthen evaluative selfreview systems to better inform future decisions for strategic direction and more effective teaching and learning.

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.

When is ERO likely to review the school again?

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

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services Central Region (Acting)

16 April 2013

index-html-m2a7690f7.gifAbout the School



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Full Primary (Year 1 to 8)

School roll


Gender composition

Male 50%, Female 50%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā


Other ethnic groups




Review team on site

February 2013

Date of this report

16 April 2013

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

February 2010

May 2007

September 2004