Plateau School - 07/08/2018

School Context

Plateau School is located in Te Marua, a semi-rural district north of Upper Hutt. The roll of 158 Years 1 to 6 students includes 26 who identify as Māori.

The school’s focus is on all students achieving to their full potential. The overarching values include: participation and adaptability; perseverance and resilience; openness and honesty; responsibility and risk taking; empathy and respect for people and the environment; and a commitment to the Treaty of Waitangi.

Achievement targets aim to raise the rate of progress for all students deemed at risk of not achieving at expected levels in reading, writing and mathematics.

Leaders and teachers report to the board, schoolwide information about outcomes for students in the following areas:

  • achievement in reading, writing and mathematics

  • other areas across the curriculum.

A new deputy principal was appointed in February 2018. Many of the teaching team have been at the school for some time.

The school belongs to the Upper Hutt cluster of schools.

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?

School reported data for the end of 2017 states that most students achieved at and above expectations in reading, writing and mathematics.

Over time Māori and boys have not achieved as well as expected in reading and writing. Some reduction in this identified disparity is evident.

Students with additional learning needs are well catered for by teachers and external providers. Over time their progress is closely monitored to measure their successes and consider appropriate next steps in learning.

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

Some students’ progress has been accelerated.

Leaders are yet to report regularly to the board on the accelerated progress for targeted students at risk of underachievement.

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?

Leaders and trustees lead a strategic approach and implement practices that align systems and processes for ongoing improvement, deliberately focused on positive outcomes for students. They have high expectations that all students will progress and achieve as lifelong learners from a wide range of experiences.

Staff address disparity with well-considered learning initiatives and wellbeing support. Individual student needs and strengths are very well known. High and clear expectations for students’ learning, progress, achievement and wellbeing are evident, understood and supported by sound systems.

Students and staff enjoy respectful relationships. Learners are well engaged in caring, collaborative and inclusive environments. The community contributes to and supports the sense of belonging and wellbeing. Families have a range of well-considered opportunities to engage with staff about their child’s learning.

Teachers and leaders are highly reflective and closely consider purpose and expectations for students involved in introduced programmes and initiatives. They work collaboratively and this contributes to the positive learning environment. Teachers respond to data and engage in professional learning such as for the play-based learning initiative and using modern learning environments to further engage students in their learning. As an outcome of change most students have greater choice and opportunity for a range of positive experiences.

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

The strategic goal to improve outcomes for priority learners and reducing disparity is key for ongoing development. The importance of evaluating the intended outcomes of the goal, to determine the success or otherwise, is understood. Increasingly formal internal evaluation is being undertaken and this should include a focus on, and reporting of, accelerated progress of those students at risk of underachievement.

The curriculum has clear links to The New Zealand Curriculumand promotes students knowing about what they are learning and what they need to do to improve. In the enacted curriculum local environmental considerations are well addressed. Strengthening the curriculum framework is a next step to include local contexts, including bicultural perspectives and broader themes.

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 Vulnerable Children Act 2014.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • a reflective, collaborative culture that promotes improved practice and student outcomes

  • coherent systems and processes that include useful monitoring of student learning

  • knowledge and increasing use of internal evaluation that informs decision making.

Next steps

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

  • trustees and staff continuing to focus on the outcomes of those most at risk of not achieving so that their learning is accelerated

  • including expectations for biculturalism and local contexts in the documented curriculum.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Alan Wynyard

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central (Acting)

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

7 August 2018

About the school

Location

Te Marua, Upper Hutt

Ministry of Education profile number

2959

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll

158

Gender composition

Female 50%, Male 50%

Ethnic composition

Māori 18%
Pākehā 80%
Other ethnic groups 2%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

No

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

July 2018

Date of this report

7 August 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review July 2015
Education Review June 2012
Education Review May 2009