Pinehurst School - 07/07/2014

1 Background

The Chief Review Officer has a statutory duty to report on the performance of private schools throughout New Zealand.

ERO reviews of private schools are significantly different in process and more limited in scope and reporting than those for state and state-integrated schools, focusing as they do on the Criteria for Registration set out in section 35C of the Education Act.

Section 35I of the Education Act 1989 requires the Education Review Office (ERO) to review private schools and to report to the Ministry of Education on whether each school continues to meet the criteria for registration. The schools are privately owned and the legislative requirements are significantly different to those for state and state-integrated schools. Private schools are not required to follow the National Education Goals or National Administration Guidelines.

What does apply in place of the legislation imposed upon state schools by the Education Act is the contract between the persons paying for the tuition of the child at the school – the parents – and the school authority. Those are matters between the parent and the school’s governing body. More information about ERO reviews of private schools can be found on ERO’s website.

The criteria for registration are that the school —

a) has premises that are suitable, as described in section 35D; and

b) usually provides tuition for 9 or more students who are of or over the age of 5 years but are under the age of 16 years; and

c) has staffing that is suitable to the age range and level of its students, the curriculum taught at the school, and the size of the school; and

d) has equipment that is suitable for the curriculum being delivered or to be delivered at the school; and

e) has a curriculum for teaching, learning, and assessment and makes details of the curriculum and its programme for delivery available for parents; and

f) has suitable tuition standards, as described in section 35F; and

g) has managers who are fit and proper persons (as described in section 35G) to be managers of a private school.

2 Criteria for Registration

Pinehurst School is a co-educational independent school located in Albany on Auckland’s North Shore. The school caters for students in Year 1-13 and attracts students from a wide geographical area. The school continues to be very well led. Since the June 2011 ERO review, two new senior leaders have joined the management team.

The school is organised into 3 areas: Primary (Years 1 to 6), Junior College (Years 7 and 8), and Senior College (Years 9 to 13). Specialist teachers now enable students in the Junior College to make better connections with the Senior College curriculum. This well considered change has been thoughtfully managed by the senior leadership team.

Pinehurst provides a very good quality of education. Students benefit from a suitable values-based curriculum that prioritises respect and positive relationships. Small class sizes and a commitment to providing a range of senior curriculum pathways ensure students have choice and variety in curriculum options.

Since the last ERO review, the school has fully implemented the Cambridge International Examination programmes (CIE) from Years 1 to 13. They have extended the CIE curriculum to Years 1 to 3, thus creating a more seamless and coherent curriculum for all learners. A clear progression is fully in place. School leaders and teachers set high expectations for student progress and achievement.

In Years 1 to 8, the curriculum is particularly focused on literacy, mathematics and science. The New Zealand Curriculum (NZC) values and key competencies are blended into the Cambridge syllabus to promote students as confident and capable learners for the 21st century. The school is well positioned to implement e-learning and formative assessment approaches across the school. Students would also benefit from extended opportunities to explore New Zealand’s bicultural context and school leaders are working towards expanding these opportunities.

Students benefit from a holistic curriculum with wide opportunities for sport, service to others, and international learning experiences. They appreciate individual teacher support and very good access to equipment and practical learning experiences. Students with additional learning needs receive high quality support. Students make transitions successfully into and throughout the school.

The calm and settled environment supports student learning well. Students are inclusive and show maturity in their interactions with their teachers and other students. To enhance student well being teachers and leaders are working towards implementing a positive education philosophy. This aligns well with the clearly articulated and enacted school vision and values.

The school provides suitable staffing and standards of tuition. Teachers are suitably qualified and continue to use a range of teaching styles and good quality resources to engage students. Teachers are engaged in professional development that enhances the quality of tuition and provides opportunities for them to contribute and take on leadership roles. Continuing development of robust performance management systems is strengthening reflective teacher practice and aligns with professional development and school-wide review. As part of performance management development, leaders are increasing opportunities for student input into teachers’ self review.

Premises and equipment are of a high standard and are suitable to support curriculum delivery. The attractive and well maintained campus reflects decision-making that is centred on meeting student learning needs. The new primary school administration, classroom and counsellor’s space are valuable additions to the school’s premises. The recent addition of a new senior school teaching facility and a whole school multi-purpose space continues to improve opportunities for students’ learning. To further enhance the premises over time, creating facilities for middle and senior school students to pursue independent study and research is now a priority. As part of the College Four project development, senior leaders are continuing to evaluate the requirements of students in relation to the design of modern learning environments.

The school’s managers have attested that they comply with the provisions of section 35G in respect to their being fit and proper persons to manage the school.

3 Other Statutory Obligations

Good systems continue to operate to enable the school’s managing body to be assured that it meets its statutory obligations.

4 Other Matters

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students (the Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

At the time of this review, there were 35 international students attending the school.

Pinehurst School continues to provide very good quality pastoral care and support to students. Well developed self-review processes are evident and good communication with families helps students settle. Expanded English language support systems have been provided to respond to increased student requirements.

5 Conclusion

On the basis of the information obtained during the review, ERO considers that Pinehurst School meets the criteria for registration as a private school set out in the Education Act 1989.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

7 July 2014

About the School


Albany, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Private Composite (Years 1 to 13)

School roll


Number of international students


Gender composition

Boys 50% Girls 50%

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā





Other Asian

Other European











Review team on site

May 2014

Date of this report

7 July 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Private School Review

Private School Review

Private School Review

June 2011

April 2008

April 2005