Pinehaven School - 16/10/2012

Education Review Report: Arotake Paerewa Pinehaven School

The purpose of ERO’s reviews is to give parents and the wider school community assurance about the quality of education that schools provide and their children receive. An ERO school report answers the question “How effectively is this school’s curriculum promoting student learning - engagement, progress and achievement?” Under that overarching question ERO reports on the quality of education and learning outcomes for children and for specific groups of children including Māori students, Pacific students and students with special needs. ERO also reports on the quality of the school’s systems for sustaining and continuing improvements.

1. Context

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

Pinehaven School, in the Upper Hutt Valley, caters for students in Years 1 to 6. The roll of 225 students includes 10% who identify as Māori. Parents report that the school is the centre of the local community and has a semi-rural, peaceful feel. Students enjoy spacious outdoor areas for play and physical education. Recent property developments include a new playground and administration block.

Since ERO's 2009 review there have been several staffing changes. The principal, senior leadership team and some of the teachers have been appointed in the last 18 months.

2. Learning

How well are students learning – engaging, progressing and achieving?

Students are well engaged in purposeful learning. According to the school’s 2011 information, most students, including Māori, are achieving National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. Teachers have recognised that writing is an area for further improvement and are currently engaged in a professional learning and development programme to support this.

Teachers have been working on refining National Standard assessment processes. This has included moderation training across the school and with other schools. School leaders have focused on developing increasingly robust data systems to enable students’ progress to be effectively tracked over time.

Appropriate annual plan targets to improve student learning are well-informed by achievement information. They are aligned to the school’s strategic direction and shared with staff. Teachers work together effectively to discuss the achievement and progress of children in target groups. They collaboratively share strategies and ideas aimed at accelerating progress. School leaders and ERO agree that deeper analysis of assessment information to identify the specific learning needs of individual students is likely to further accelerate progress.

Parents receive plain language reports, at least twice a year, about the progress and achievement of their children in relation to National Standards. Reports identify students’ next learning steps and ways parents can help and support their children at home.

Teachers and school leaders effectively identify and monitor the progress of students who require extra support. The special needs register is reviewed regularly. School leaders are also reviewing processes and intervention programmes for those identified as gifted and talented. Students have opportunities to assume leadership roles, be involved directly in decision making and receive related training.

3. Curriculum

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

The Pinehaven School Curriculum and values have been appropriately informed by community consultation. School leaders have clear plans for further curriculum review and development. They are working to strengthen the alignment between the curriculum and the school’s strategic direction.

Features of curriculum implementation include:

  • values which underpin the curriculum and are clearly articulated
  • strong community ownership of the school values
  • purposeful processes to ensure values are embedded, regularly reviewed and revisited
  • a system for tracking curriculum coverage
  • processes for including student voice into planning
  • a range of opportunities for students to participate in a variety of extra-curricular activities, many of which are facilitated by the parent community.

Effective processes support teachers to share practice and engage in collaborative discussions. They participate in group inquiries to develop a sense of collective responsibility to promote enhanced student outcomes. Less experienced teachers are well supported by leaders and other staff.

Relationships between teachers and students are warm and respectful. The school has a positive tone. Adults and children support and encourage one another. Leaders have collected data which demonstrates that students feel safe and happy in the playground.

Clear guidelines and recently developed teaching expectations have led to further improved classroom practices which support effective learning.

Teachers align planning to learning intentions. They give clear instructions and are developing strategies to increase students’ ownership and clarity about their learning.

Leaders have a clear picture about the quality of teaching and next steps for teacher development. ERO agrees with school identified areas for development. These include:

  • deeper data analysis by teachers to plan deliberate acts of teaching targeted to specific learning needs
  • increasing students’ ability to describe what they are learning and what they need to learn next.

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

Leaders, teachers and trustees are committed to promoting increased success for Maori students as Maori. Recent developments include:

  • mihi whakatau to welcome new students, whānau and visitors
  • exploring different strategies to engage and consult whānau
  • increased focus on tracking Māori student achievement in literacy and mathematics
  • growing teacher confidence and use of te reo me ngā tikanga Māori

Leaders and trustees have begun a consultative process to define what success is for Māori as Māori at Pinehaven School. Teachers have identified the need to further increase their knowledge and awareness of Māori language and culture. Professional learning and development to promote increased cultural competency for teachers is planned for 2013. Further integration of te ao Māori is a goal in line with planned curriculum development. Leaders plan to strengthen links with local iwi.

ERO’s external evaluation supports these next steps.

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.

Trustees are clear about their governance roles and responsibilities. They are committed, experienced, and questioning. They appreciate the detailed information they receive, about student achievement data, for decision making.

A newly formed senior team provides strong pedagogical leadership. It is improvement focused and highly reflective. A clear strategic direction is evident and documents and processes are well aligned. Day to day operational systems are well organised. The principal is developing distributive leadership across the staff.

Leaders and trustees have effective processes for consulting whānau and the wider community.

The principal has redeveloped the appraisal processes to increase their effectiveness and to provide teachers with robust next steps. The board supports professional learning and development programmes for staff which are aligned to strategic direction and targeted at increasing student achievement.

Self review is of a high quality and is effectively used to identify strengths and appropriate next steps. There is a comprehensive programme of review with thorough gathering of information. The principal models evaluative thinking and a considered approach to deciding improvements.

Leaders and ERO agree that use of more evaluative questions and research-based quality indicators is likely to further strengthen self review schoolwide.

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
  • 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.

 

 

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services Central Region (Acting)

16 October 2012

About the School

Location

Upper Hutt

Ministry of Education profile number

2957

School type

Contributing Primary (Year 1 to 6)

School roll

225

Gender composition

Male 51%, Female 49%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

Māori

Pacific

Other ethnic groups

79%

9%

1%

11%

Review team on site

August 2012

Date of this report

16 October 2012

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

August 2009

May 2006

May 2003