Parkside Christian S D A School - 24/07/2019

School Context

Parkside Christian S D A School is a state integrated school for students in Years 1 to 8. Of the 38 students who attend the school, four identify as Māori and 17 are of Pacific heritage. The roll has increased since the December 2016 ERO report. The school’s community includes families from the wider Hawke’s Bay region. Some experienced trustees provide continuity on the board.

The school’s vision for learning is ‘Education for Eternity Through Growth: Godliness, rich relationships, ownership of mastery, wisdom in decision-making, transformational learning, harvest-focus’.

Current goals and targets are focused on accelerating the learning of all students below expectation in literacy.

Leaders and teachers regularly report to the board, schoolwide information about outcomes for students in reading, writing and mathematics.

Professional learning and development in 2019 is focused on implementing the digital technologies curriculum.

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?

The school is working towards equity and excellence for all children. At the end of 2018, the school reported that most students achieved at or above curriculum achievement expectations in mathematics, with a large majority in reading and writing. The majority of Māori students are achieving well in all areas. Pacific students achieve better than their peers in writing, but less well in reading and mathematics. Boys are achieving better than girls in reading. Some disparity is evident for boys in writing and mathematics.

The school is aware of an overall downward trend in achievement and is working proactively to address this. The school has identified that in 2018, an increase in the enrolment of students requiring additional learning support had an impact on the end-of-year data.

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

All students identified in 2018 as at risk of not achieving, including Māori learners, made progress, with most accelerating their learning in writing and mathematics.

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?

Leadership actively pursues the school’s vision and ensures this is strongly reflected in the environment. The vision underpins teaching and learning and is aligned well with The New Zealand Curriculum. Students learn across the breadth and depth of the curriculum.

Teachers have high expectations for children to be successful learners. Students learn in a positive, caring and supportive environment. Specific targeted teaching and well-considered interventions are responsive to the needs of individual students. Well-developed systems and processes enable teachers to track, monitor and report the progress and achievement of all students. Teachers know the students and their needs very well.

Students support each other and work well together. They are engaged in purposeful and relevant learning tasks. Students are provided with some choice as to how they manage their learning. There is an increased focus on the use of digital technologies to enhance and present their learning.

A proactive approach to working with external agencies in collaboration with parents and whānau enables students requiring additional learning support to participate and engage in learning alongside their peers.  Resourcing is used appropriately to build teachers’ knowledge and understanding of effective teaching practice to support the achievement of these students. 

The board is highly representative of the school and church community. They are well informed about student progress and achievement and this enables them to make well-considered responses to resourcing the learning needs of students.

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

Staff identified that continuing to develop students’ agency as learners is an ongoing priority for development. Their current professional learning development is supporting this priority and the principal and staff should consider networking with other schools to strengthen the building of their capabilities.

Curriculum review is underway, to align The New Zealand Curriculum and the community’s priorities for learning, with the overarching concepts of the school’s special character curriculum. To provide more coherence and make clear the school’s expectations for teaching and learning, this review needs to include documenting:

  • how the localised curriculum and place-based education is integrated

  • guidelines for effective teaching, including culturally responsive practices for teachers of Māori and Pacific learners

  • guidelines for planning and assessment

  • career learning and second language options for students in Years 7 and 8.

Reflection and inquiry are used to inform decisions for improvement. Staff regularly discuss the impact of their teaching strategies, programmes and interventions and how these are promoting the achievement of target students. There needs to be more in-depth consideration of how well programmes, initiatives and teaching practices support accelerated learning and improved achievement for all students. Continuing to develop a shared understanding of internal evaluation should enable trustees, the principal and teachers to know better the effectiveness of teaching, learning and board operation.

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 Children’s Act 2014.

4 ERO’s Overall Judgement

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO’s overall evaluation judgement of Parkside Christian S D A School’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Developing.

ERO’s Framework: Overall School Performance is available on ERO’s website.

5 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • high expectations that all students experience success as learners
  • targeted teaching and a range of interventions that are responsive to the needs of students
  • the commitment to its special character that promotes a positive learning environment for students.

Next steps

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

  • having a coherent curriculum document that integrates the school’s special character and The New Zealand Curriculum to provide guidelines for effective teaching, learning and culturally responsive practices
  • internal evaluation to know about the impact of programmes, interventions and teaching strategies on outcomes for students and to respond accordingly
  • the board taking responsibility for meeting its statutory responsibilities so that policies and procedures are always up to date.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified non-compliance in relation to some key policies and procedures. Trustees have responded immediately and given priority to updating those linked to health and safety and personnel.

In order to address this, the board of trustees must ensure that it:

  • complies in full with any legislation currently in force or that may be developed to ensure the safety of students and employees [National Administration Guideline 5]

  • develops and implements personnel and industrial policies, within policy and procedural frameworks set by the Government from time to time, which promote high levels of staff performance, use educational resources effectively and recognise the needs of students.
    [National Administration Guideline 3]

Areas for improved compliance practice

To improve current practice, the board of trustees should strengthen procedures and practices for managing unexplained daily student absences.

Phillip Cowie

Director Review and Improvement Services

Central Region

24 July 2019

About the school



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll


Gender composition

Male 20, Female 18

Ethnic composition

Māori 4

NZ European/Pākehā 17

Pacific 17

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)


Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

May 2019

Date of this report

24 July 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review December 2016

Education Review December 2013

Education Review December 2010