Orini Combined School - 19/04/2018

School Context

Orini Combined School is located in a small rural community 30 kilometres north east of Hamilton. It provides education for students in Years 1 to 8 who come from local and surrounding areas. The current school roll of 130 includes 35 Māori students. In the previous two years, the school has experienced significant changes to the make up of the roll.

 The school’s vision is to develop a confident, capable and connected community working in partnership to support children's learning. Students are encouraged to develop the values of respect, responsibility, reflection, resourcefulness, resilience and relationships. There is a focus on learning and accelerating the achievement of all students who are at risk of not achieving equitable and excellent outcomes. The school has set specific goals and objectives to accelerate the progress of all students who are not achieving curriculum expectations in literacy and mathematics.

Leaders in the school regularly report to the board, school-wide information about outcomes for students in the following areas:

  • reading, writing and mathematics.

Since the 2013 ERO review there have been many changes to the teaching team, which include the appointment of a new principal in 2016 and the appointment of a new deputy principal. Teachers have participated in professional development in writing and mathematics.

The school is a member of the Morrinsville Community of Learning|Kāhui Ako.

Evaluation Findings

Equity and excellence – valued outcomes for students

1.1 How well is the school achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for all its students?

The school is working towards achieving excellent outcomes for all students. The school’s student achievement information for 2015 to 2017 shows that most students achieved at or above the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. This data also shows a pattern of improved achievement in reading and mathematics. In 2017 Māori students, proportionally achieved at similar levels to their non-Māori peers in writing and at lower levels in reading and mathematics. Boys achieved at higher levels than girls in mathematics and at slightly lower levels in reading and writing.

1.2 How effectively does this school respond to those Māori and other students whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school is effectively responding to many Māori and other students whose learning and achievement need acceleration. The school’s 2017 achievement data indicates that a little over half of at-risk students, including Māori, made more than one year’s progress in the year in reading, writing and mathematics.

2 School conditions for equity and excellence

2.1 What school processes and practices are effective in enabling achievement of equity and excellence?

School leaders have maintained a successful focus on building teacher capability. They have accessed external professional learning for teachers in the areas of writing and mathematics to support accelerated achievement of at-risk students. Leaders have established useful frameworks that support teachers to specifically respond to students’ learning needs. The school’s teacher appraisal process has been reviewed and strengthened. Clear expectations for teaching practice have been documented in the school’s curriculum, especially in the areas of literacy and mathematics.

Good use is made of assessment information for students with additional learning needs. The school has well analysed diagnostic information to identify and plan for the learning needs of students at risk. These students receive individualised programmes and interventions designed to accelerate their learning. Teacher aides provide additional learning support for at-risk students. The board of trustees fund an extra teacher to specifically support at-risk learners.

Strong partnerships for learning have been established with parents and whānau. Regular hui with Māori whānau support the school’s commitment to responding to whānau aspirations. The parents and whānau of at-risk students meet both formally and informally with teachers and school leaders to set goals and monitor achievement and progress.

Strategic planning is strongly focused on addressing disparities of achievement. Charter targets clearly focus on accelerating students whose learning is at risk. The progress of these students is reviewed regularly and appropriate actions to accelerate their achievement are planned. Trustees receive twice-yearly student achievement information reports.

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

To support the school to further raise student achievement and achieve excellent and equitable outcomes leaders should give priority to:

  • strengthening reporting to the board of trustees focused on the progress of targeted at-risk students
  • further developing the school’s documented curriculum to reflect parent and whānau aspirations and the changing nature of the school’s community. 

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:

  • the provision of additional programmes that cater for the identified needs of at-risk learners
  • professional leadership that is strongly focused on building teacher capability
  • strong partnerships with parents and whānau that support positive learning outcomes
  • strategic planning that reflects parent and whānau aspirations.

Next steps

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

  • strengthening reporting processes that support trustees in their decision making
  • curriculum development to support  coherent learning pathways for students. 

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Lynda Pura-Watson
Deputy Chief Review Officer

Te Tai Miringa - Waikato / Bay of Plenty Region

19 April 2018

About the school 



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll


Gender composition

Boys      51%
Girls       49%

Ethnic composition

Māori                    27%
Pākehā                  66%
Other                     7%

Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

November 2017

Date of this report

19 April 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review April 2013
Education Review June 2010
Education Review May 2007