Napier Central School - 23/05/2018

School Context

Napier Central School is located in Napier and caters for students from Years 1 to 6. Of the 300 children enrolled, 14% are Māori.

The school’s valued outcomes for learners are currently under revision. The established RIPE values promote Respect, Integrity, Perseverance and Empathy. Future-focused learning and teaching and self-directed learners are key drivers for development.

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

  • achievement in reading, writing and maths

  • achievement in relation to charter targets and target learners.

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?

School reported information shows that most students continue to achieve at expectations for reading and writing. There is sustained high achievement in mathematics. Māori students as a group achieve well and better than their peers in writing and mathematics.

The school recognises that, as a group, boys’ achievement in literacy continues to be lower than girls. Achievement in writing for boys has been slow to improve and there has been a recent decline in boys’ reading. The school is tracking year cohorts to show progress over time.

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

The school is establishing systems, processes and practices to promote accelerated progress for learners who need this. There is evidence of accelerated progress for some students.

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?

Leaders are improvement-focused and working to align practices and systems to promote successful outcomes for learners. They demonstrate a measured approach to change. There is a focus on strengthening consistency of practice, communication and collaboration.

Provision for students with identified learning needs is supported through coordinating and monitoring external agency support and assisting teachers with appropriate strategies. Teachers have inclusive practices to support these learners.

There are increased opportunities for teacher leadership. Well-considered professional learning and development supports leader and teacher growth. An improved appraisal process is in place that is appropriately aligned with Education Council requirements. The process is well implemented, effectively supports teacher development and useful for promoting consistent practice across the school.

Trustees take a strategic and considered approach to change and direction-setting. They scrutinise the effectiveness of the school in achieving valued student outcomes, especially student achievement. They conscientiously undertake their responsibilities, strengthening their policies and practices and ensuring health and safety is a priority. They seek to improve their knowledge, build sustainable practice and are working to improve communication with all stakeholders. Trustees are well informed of school successes and challenges.

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

The school is aware of the need to strengthen cultural responsiveness to Māori and promote Ka Hikitia - Accelerating Success strategies. Improvements to aspects of bicultural practice have occurred. Whānau voice and leadership within the school have recently strengthened and a strategic action plan has been developed to guide improvement. Further building of relationships and partnerships through meaningful, ongoing consultation to define aspirations and inform curriculum is a next step. This should assist in establishing a clear vision for success as Māori and evaluating effectiveness of actions in promoting culture, language and identity. Building staff and trustees’ capacity and knowledge is important to help in demonstrating culturally responsive practice.

The curriculum is currently under development to ensure it appropriately reflects aspirations for children as 21st Century learners. Reviewing the vision, values and principles is underway. Establishing key outcomes for learners through further consultation and review should assist in establishing a cohesive, locally-based curriculum and support responsive, consistent teaching and learning.

Developing greater clarity about students’ ongoing progress and acceleration is a next step. This should include refining target-setting and analysis of assessment information to more clearly show acceleration. Tracking progress over time should support evaluation of actions taken to promote equitable outcomes for groups and individuals. Continuing to develop teacher inquiry should assist in building an evidence base to show how well strategies have improved outcomes for at risk learners.

Promoting student wellbeing is a focus. Some deliberate strategies and actions occur to promote positive relationships and wellbeing of students. It is timely to evaluate the effectiveness of these.

There is evidence of good practice in transitioning children with high needs into school. Teachers communicate with parents about learning programmes and strategies. Continuing to develop two-way partnerships and evaluating the effectiveness of provision are next steps.

Leaders are developing practices and systems to support inquiry and effective internal evaluation. The school seeks feedback from families and students on school initiatives and practices. A next step is to develop a shared understanding and a clear process for internal evaluation to strengthen knowledge of effectiveness and 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 Vulnerable Children Act 2014.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • developing leadership that is focused on promoting collaborative, consistent practice

  • improvement-focused trustees who scrutinise school performance and make informed decisions.

Next steps

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

  • establishing a cohesive, locally-based curriculum that supports effective teaching and learning

  • strengthening cultural responsiveness to Māori students and their families through meaningful, ongoing consultation to define aspirations and inform curriculum

  • developing a shared understanding and a clear process for internal evaluation that strengthens decision-making and knowledge of effectiveness.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Patricia Davey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central (Acting)

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

23 May 2018

About the school

Location

Napier

Ministry of Education profile number

2618

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll

299

Gender composition

Female 53% Male 47%

Ethnic composition

Māori 14%
Pākehā 86%

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

March 2018

Date of this report

23 May 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review February 2015
Education Review May 2011
Education Review June 2008