Middle School West Auckland - 19/12/2017

Findings

Middle School West Auckland is not yet meeting its obligations as outlined in the Agreement with the Crown. However, it has demonstrated that it has the capability to continue to improve educational outcomes for all its students. 

1 Context

Middle School West Auckland is a Partnership School|Kura Hourua (PSKH) located in Henderson. As with all PSKH, it operates under a contractual arrangement with the Crown, to achieve results, maintain participation, keep students safe and act with probity.

The school opened in 2015 and caters for students from Years 7 to 10. Midway through 2016 the school relocated to facilities in Henderson. The new facilities are exclusively used by the school and better suited for education. Three villas (groups of up to 60 students) are based in this facility, a further villa that promotes te reo me ona tikanga Māori is based nearby.

The school's sponsor, the Villa Education Trust (VET), also operates a private school and another partnership school. This is the first full ERO review of the school's performance in relation to the performance standards stipulated in its contract.

Middle School West Auckland aims to:

  • provide a window of opportunity for outstanding learning for Year 7 to Year 10 learners

  • play a significant part in preparing students for full and effective participation in their future academic, cultural, sporting, social and working lives

  • provide a learning environment that is thorough, innovative and able to be applied for each learner, through his or her individualised education.

The school has met the guaranteed minimum roll for 2017 of 170 students. The contract specifies that 75 percent of the school roll should be comprised of priority learners. The school has met this performance standard.The sponsor has attested that they have also met the requirement that 80 percent of the curriculum is taught by registered teachers with current practising certificates.

2 Performance Standards and Results

The school is required to report on its outcomes against the Performance Standards in its Agreement with the Crown by 31 January each year.

Student Achievement

Middle School West Auckland did not meet its originalachievement performance measures in 2016. School leaders predict that they will not meet these measures in 2017. Performance standards for Middle School West Auckland are currently under review with the Ministry of Education.

The school's term one assessment data for 2017 show that for students in Years 7 and 8:

  • 37% of students were at and above the National Standard in reading

  • 27% of students were at and above the National Standard in writing

  • 49% of students were at and above the National Standard in mathematics.

The school collects similar achievement information for students in years 9 and 10. The school is not yet required to report this information to the Ministry of Education since there are no performance standards relating to these year groups yet.

The Ministry of Education has agreed to work with the Villa Education Trust to develop additional measures to demonstrate the progress of all studentsthat will accurately show value added across students' current set of ability, and measures for Years 9 and 10.

Student engagement and attendance

Engagement and attendance standards for Middle School West Auckland are currently under review with the Ministry of Education.

urvey information affirms that students value the school’s caring learning culture.Two of the 2016 performance standards for student engagement were not met. In 2016, 11 students were stood down and five were suspended. During 2017, five students have been stood down, nine suspended and one excluded. In each case an appropriate process was followed. S

ERO’s investigations confirm the accuracy and validity of the reported results in relation to student achievement and engagement.The performance standard for student attendance has been met. School processes for monitoring student attendance are thorough and focus on engaging with families.

3 Sustainability and future focus

To what extent does this school have the capability to assess and improve educational outcomes for students?

The New Zealand Curriculum underpins the school day. There is a strong academic focus on core learning areas in the mornings and opportunities for success across the breadth of the curriculum in the afternoons. Students also undertake eight independent projects each year that integrate learning areas across the curriculum. Teachers support students' learning through related class activities and individual support during independent learning time. The school aims to build personal character through applied Christian values.

The school holds high expectations of students’ learning and behaviour. Teachers and the community liaison person know students well and care about their learning and progress. Leaders and teachers initially focus on promoting student welfare and wellbeing as a prerequisite to learning. They then seek to instil confidence in students to view themselves as successful learners. Developing a positive mindset is seen as integral to this.

Processes for gathering and reporting data are still developing. Leaders and teachers are continuing to develop their assessment practices. They have participated in professional development to strengthen their understanding. This work has been helpful in integrating into the Villa Education Trust model assessment tasks and standardised tests that assist teachers to monitor students’ progress. The school will be part of a pilot project designed to assess skills appropriate for future focused learning. Alignment of these assessments is likely to provide the school with worthwhile information about the effectiveness of teaching and programmes in accelerating students’ progress.

Teachers should continue to develop their use of valid information about student learning and progress in order to plan targeted teaching that meets the learning needs of all students. The school uses a variety of ways to gather ideas and feedback from teachers and students. Teachers are invited to contribute to reviews of the VET projects and to modify tasks to better suit individual students. Formalising internal evaluation processes and u sing ERO publications such asSchool Evaluation IndicatorsandEffective Internal Evaluation,could strengthen this process going forward.

In order to support ongoing improvement, school leaders should:

  • continue to strengthen assessment literacy including building the capability of leaders and teachers to accelerate students’ progress and to effectively monitor and track progress towards the school defined value added achievement targets

  • continue to improve internal evaluation by formalising processes for evaluating the effectiveness of programmes and initiatives

  • embed the recently developed appraisal process

  • build on recent teaching and learning initiatives in Pohutukawa villa to support their aspirations for bilingual education.

Statutory / Legal obligations

The school has attested that it has met all its legal and contractual obligations.

During the course of the review, ERO audited the process for the endorsement of teachers’ practising certificates undertaken within the last 12 months. This process did not fully meet requirements in 2015 - 2016. The appraisal process has recently been strengthened to better support teachers to improve their practice and to meet requirements for the endorsement of teachers’ practising certificates.

ERO verified the school’s evidence of student safety. The wellbeing@school survey produced largely positive feedback for the school. The information has been analysed and interpreted. Variation in responses between the school’s villas has prompted further consideration among school leaders. ERO’s investigations confirmed that the school has taken all reasonable steps to keep students safe.

4 Conclusion

Middle School West Auckland is not yet meeting its obligations as outlined in the Agreement with the Crown. However, it has demonstrated that it has the capability to continue to improve educational outcomes for all its students.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

19 December 2017

About the School

Location

Henderson

Ministry of Education profile number

713

School type

Partnership School|Kura Hourua

School roll

194

Gender composition

Boys 57%, Girls 43%

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Samoan
Cook Island
Indian
Korean
Fijian
Niuean
other Pacific groups

42%
13%
20%
4%
4%
4%
2%
2%
9%

Review team on site

September 2017

Date of this report

19 December 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

New School Assurance Review

December 2015