Oromahoe School - 05/05/2017

Findings

Oromahoe School is undertaking school-wide improvements that are likely to promote better outcomes for students. The roll reflects population growth in the area and the community’s confidence in the professional leadership of the principal, the board and teachers.

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

1 Background and Context

What is the background and context for this school’s review?

Oromahoe School is a small rural school in Northland that caters for students in Years 1 to 8. Since the last ERO review:

  • the previous principal resigned
  • an acting principal led the school for two terms
  • a new principal began at the beginning of Term 2, 2016
  • a Limited Statutory Manager (LSM) had jurisdiction over personnel and curriculum
  • the school has experienced significant roll growth.

The Ministry of Education (MoE) has provided professional learning and development in the areas of curriculum development, literacy and student achievement.

2 Review and Development

How effectively is the school addressing its priorities for review and development?

Priorities identified for review and development

The 2015 ERO report identified a number of areas for development. These included establishing effective working relationships across the school, and improving governance, professional leadership, and assessment practices. Progress has been made in addressing these areas of concern.

Progress

Relationships across the school have improved significantly. The principal, teachers and trustees now communicate appropriately and purposefully. As a result, these groups of adults are better able to focus on the important work of providing education for children.

The elected board is made up of new and experienced trustees. An online provider is used to ensure the school has a full range of up-to-date policies. Trustees will customise these policies and procedures as they are due for review.

The principal has led the worthwhile review and development of the school’s charter. This work included redefining the school’s values and mission, and developing a profile of the desired attitudes and achievements of graduate students. Strategic and annual plans provide useful guidance for the board and teachers to achieve the school’s goals.

The principal provides effective professional leadership for the school. She works closely with teachers to build shared understandings of expected teaching practice. While there is more work to be done, a foundation is being laid to develop consistent teaching practices across the school.

The school’s curriculum is under review. This process will formalise what is taught and how it is taught, and better align the curriculum to the outcomes valued for children. The education for sustainability (EFS) programme is a feature in the school.

Teachers are beginning to use an inquiry approach to reflect on the impact of their own practice on children’s learning. It is also a useful way to strengthen teacher performance management systems. Some teachers need to improve their programmes so that they engage all students and better promote learning and achievement.

Assessment practices have been reviewed and updated. Teachers now have systems and frameworks to help them monitor student progress. They participate in professional conversations with colleagues about progress made by students in their classes, and share ideas for promoting learning. These recently introduced practices should help to improve student achievement and reduce disparity between groups of students.

Key next steps

While progress has been made in some key areas identified for improvement, there is a need for urgency to address remaining concerns and to embed recent improvements. Key next steps include:

  • fully implementing and embedding effective assessment processes
  • teacher use of achievement information to inform planning of classroom programmes
  • continuing to review the curriculum so that it enacts the vision for the school, and promotes learning aligned to the school’s graduate profile.
  • consideration of how digital technologies could support and extend learning opportunities for children
  • strengthening teaching practice so that school expectations are met and student engagement and achievement are promoted for all students. 

3 Sustainable performance and self review

How well placed is the school to sustain and continue to improve and review its performance?

The school is better placed to sustain and continue to improve its performance. The experienced principal provides good guidance for the board and teachers.

A positive and optimistic tone is evident in the school. The growing school roll reflects population growth in the area, and the community’s confidence in the principal’s leadership, teachers and the board.

The school’s heritage and its connection with Oromahoe marae provide strong connections to te ao Māori. Te reo me ōna tikanga Māori are woven well throughout programmes and the school day. This good practice affirms the language and culture of Māori students, and promotes bicultural citizenship of Aotearoa New Zealand for all students at the school.

Key next steps

In order to provide more effective governance and to support ongoing improvement, the board needs to:

  • improve trustees’ understanding of their roles and responsibilities so they are better able to contribute to achieving the agreed strategic goals of the school
  • establish purposeful internal evaluation across all aspects of school operations.

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.

Conclusion

Oromahoe School is undertaking school-wide improvements that are likely to promote better outcomes for students. The roll reflects population growth in the area and the community’s confidence in the professional leadership of the principal, the board and teachers.

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

Graham Randell
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

5 May 2017

About the School 

Location

Oromahoe, Kaikohe

Ministry of Education profile number

1065

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

91

Gender composition

Girls       52
Boys      39

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā

39
52

Review team on site

February 2017

Date of this report

5 May 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review
Education Review
Education Review

May 2015
May 2012
May 2009