Pakiri School - 20/05/2013

1 Context

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

Pakiri is a long-established, small isolated school in Rodney District. It is the centre of the rural Pakiri coastal community and provides for 15 students in Years 1 to 8. Most of the students are of Māori descent and are affiliated to Ngāti Wai and Ngāti Manuhiri.

The current principal was appointed in 2011. The board chairperson and most board members have been in place since the last ERO review in 2010.

There has been significant development in the areas requiring improvement identified in the 2010 ERO report. These areas related to attendance, updating the curriculum to include the values and principles of The New Zealand Curriculum, more effective teaching strategies, self review and a focus on success for Māori students as Māori. The school has an inclusive whānau-oriented culture, which contributes to a safe and positive learning environment for students, staff and parents.

Considerable effort has been put into two key initiatives in the last two years to improve school performance. The principal, staff and board have worked on a full review of the charter and on building relationships with parents, whānau and the wider community. These initiatives have contributed to the development of an agreed future direction for the school and a school environment that fosters learning and success for all students. This is reflected in the school whakatauki of 'Kotahi te hikoi whakamua-United as one, moving ahead together'.

2 Learning

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

The school uses achievement information well to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement.

The strategic plan provides clear direction for learning and raising student achievement. Strategic goals are set and have specific indicators to assist parents and teachers to monitor student progress. National Standards information is shared with the board to assist decision making in resourcing for individuals and groups of students.

Teachers use a range of assessment tools to collate and analyse student information. This information is used to plan learning programmes for students and for teachers to make judgements about each student’s achievements in relation to the National Standards.

School achievement information shows that at the end of 2012 a significant proportion of students was achieving at and above National Standards in reading and writing. Most students were achieving at and above National Standards in mathematics. Students generally make good learning progress as they move through the school.

Students with special learning needs are well supported. These students receive specific learning programmes which are provided by teachers and an experienced teacher aide.

Useful written reports and three-way conferences enable students to share their learning and help parents to understand and contribute to students’ progress, achievement and next learning steps.

3 Curriculum

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

The school curriculum strongly promotes and supports student learning. It is closely aligned to the values and principles of The New Zealand Curriculum. The principal is working towards a curriculum that is authentic and personalised to the learning needs of Pakiri students. Consultation with the school community has resulted in a school charter and strategic goals that reflect the aspirations of parents, whānau and the wider community.

A key aspect of the curriculum is the inclusion of school values of hiranga (excellence), whakaute (respect), kotahitanga (unity) and maia (courage). Each value has clear expectations for teachers and parents to guide teaching and learning.

Curriculum guidelines are in place to guide the planning and implementation of learning programmes. Teachers use these to ensure all subject areas are covered.

Teachers set and share high expectations for learning and behaviour and use a range of effective strategies with students. Positive relationships exist between teachers and students, and among students. Teachers focus on assisting students to understand more about their learning and encourage them to take increasing responsibility for their progress and achievement. Sound appraisal systems are in place for teachers. These systems could be made more effective by ensuring that some individual teaching goals are more clearly focused on improving student achievement.

The curriculum offers a wide range of learning experiences both in and outside the classroom so that students are not disadvantaged by the school’s isolation or size. There are frequent sporting and cultural visits to other schools and local resource people come to the school to support the curriculum.

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

The school is increasingly promoting educational success for Māori students. The principal and board have made this a priority in the last two years. The board has funded a local iwi resource person to promote student learning and engagement, and other local expertise and knowledge are provided to support school kapahaka. Te reo and tikanga Māori are effectively integrated into the school curriculum. Teachers are focused on the use of te reo Māori in all learning programmes. Māori students are developing a strong sense of belonging and identity. All students are building their understanding and knowledge of our bicultural heritage and status, and have a strong sense of identity with Pakiri school.

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 because:

  • there is strong professional leadership by the principal, who is giving the school a clear sense of purpose and direction
  • the board is well led by a knowledgeable chairperson, and trustees are committed to improving learning opportunities for students.
  • self review is integral to school operations and focused on continual improvement
  • teachers have high expectations and are effective
  • there is an inclusive supportive school culture which supports students’ attendance, engagement and achievement.

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.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

20 May 2013

About the School

Location

Pakiri, Northland

Ministry of Education profile number

1074

School type

Full Primary

School roll

15

Gender composition

Boys 8

Girls 7

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

12

3

Review team on site

March 2013

Date of this report

20 May 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

April 2010

June 2007

April 2004