Prebbleton School - 22/09/2016

1 Context

Prebbleton School is located on the outskirts of Christchurch. Since the 2013 ERO review, there has been a significant increase in its roll and staffing.

A new principal started at the school in 2016. Changes have also occurred in other key positions such as board chairperson and deputy principal.

The board has continued to be involved in ongoing building projects and extensions to facilities resulting from roll growth. The school’s close involvement with other local schools and early childhood centres has continued to extend learning opportunities for both children and teachers.

2 Equity and excellence

The vision and valued outcomes defined by the school for all children are to support them to be inquiring thinkers, clear communicators and self-directed learners who are creative and resilient. The values the school seeks to foster include aroha, passion and integrity.

The school’s analysed achievement information shows that children achieve well against the National Standards. Achievement is highest in reading, with 50% of children achieving above the standard. Over 80 % of children achieve at or above the standards in mathematics and written language.

There has been a general lift in achievement across the school over the last three years in literacy and mathematics. Moderation of the judgements teachers make about children's progress and achievement have become increasingly robust.

Māori children's achievement is closest to their peers in reading and mathematics and has improved over time in these areas. Leaders and teachers are giving appropriate priority to raising achievement in written language for all children.

Some individual children and school teams have achieved notable success in a range of zone and regional sporting events, cultural activities and several academic competitions.

Since the school's last ERO review, the board, leaders and teachers have maintained the strengths noted at that time. They have made good progress towards addressing recommendations detailed in the 2013 report. School-wide professional development has supported improved student achievement in mathematics.

3 Accelerating achievement

How effectively does this school respond to Māori children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school has had some success in raising aspects of Māori children's achievement and accelerating the progress of those with the greatest learning needs. Initiatives introduced in 2016 are enhancing the provisions for accelerating the progress of these students.

Māori children's learning is promoted in an environment that affirms their culture and fosters supportive relationships and their sense of belonging. Ongoing links with local rūnunga, including hui, support the school. The school’s kapa haka group continues to operate successfully.

Leaders and teachers have recently introduced better systems for identifying, tracking and reporting on the achievement and progress of all Māori students. They have a range of provisions for responding to students whose progress is most in need of acceleration. These include:

  • well planned, clearly focused, regular small group teaching for literacy and mathematics learning
  • the use of an increasing range of appropriate teaching strategies to help children achieve success, including the involvement of parents in interventions
  • well targeted and coordinated additional learning opportunities
  • teachers undertaking in-depth evaluation of, and refinements to, their teaching practices.

How effectively does this school respond to other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school has good evidence of the children whose learning and achievement need acceleration. This evidence shows most children making accelerated progress. This success is promoted by many of the strategies leaders and teachers use to promote Māori learners' achievement outlined previously.

The introduction in 2016 of collaboratively developed targets for raising children's achievement has resulted in the better identification of priority learners, regular tracking of their progress and ongoing adjustments to the support they are given.

The introduction of a school-wide approach to children setting personal goals and evaluating their own progress, in collaboration with parents, has given added focus to their learning.

Learning-focused classroom environments help children to achieve success. These environments are inclusive and provide regular opportunities for children to learn with and from one another.

4 School conditions

How effectively do the school’s curriculum and other organisational processes and practices develop and enact the school’s vision, values, goals and targets for equity and excellence?

The school's curriculum, processes and practices are actively supporting the enactment of the school's vision, values, goals and targets for equity and excellence.

The school continues to provide children with a rich and varied range of learning experiences both within and beyond the school. Features of the school's curriculum include:

  • class programmes that give appropriate emphasis to literacy, mathematics and physical activity
  • older children having some very good opportunities to develop their leadership skills
  • motivating children and making learning meaningful through building on their interests and creating links between what they learn in one area to other areas
  • younger children being effectively supported in their transition to school.

Teachers enhance the quality of learning experiences for children with some very effective examples of collaborative practices. There are also good examples of children and teachers using digital technologies to support their learning and teaching. Teachers are successfully giving greater emphasis to increasing students’ independence and are helping them to take responsibility for their own learning.

Leaders and teachers are giving appropriate priority to updating the school’s curriculum in ways that clarify expectations for learning and teaching and provide more continuity in learning as children move through the school.

The new principal, with the active support of her deputy principal and team leaders, is providing strong improvement-focused leadership.

The board governs the school well. Trustees bring to their roles a variety of experiences and skills. They provide good support to leaders and teachers to work towards the school's three strategic priorities that include raising children's achievement. They have been active in bringing about ongoing improvements to the school’s facilities. Improved reporting to the board is providing the information trustees need to make decisions that promote excellence and equity.

Leaders and teachers are being well supported to develop their professional knowledge and skills through:

  • targeted professional development related to the school’s priorities for raising children's achievement through improved teaching
  • support within teams, including good use of staff strengths, the productive sharing of ideas, and a well implemented induction programme for beginning teachers
  • robust appraisal systems that provide useful feedback to staff and identify areas for further growth.

There is strong support for the school within its community. Leaders and teachers are giving emphasis to building strong learning partnerships with parents.

5 Going forward

How well placed is the school to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it?

Strong school leadership, a positive school culture, learning-centred decision making and a clear commitment to ongoing improvement mean the school is well placed to better accelerate the progress of children who need it.

Leaders and teachers:

  • know the children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated
  • respond effectively to the strengths, needs and interests of each child
  • regularly evaluate how well teaching is working for these children
  • act on what they know works well for each child
  • build teacher capability effectively to achieve equitable outcomes for all children
  • are well placed to achieve and sustain equitable and excellent outcomes for all children.

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

6 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 the following:

  • board administration

  • curriculum

  • management of health, safety and welfare

  • personnel management

  • 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

  • processes for appointing staff

  • stand down, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions

  • attendance

  • compliance with the provisions of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014.

7 Recommendations

ERO agrees with the priorities established by school leaders to further promote high achievement and high quality teaching. These include:

  • building on the best practices evident within the school
  • clarifying expectations for learning and teaching through updating key school documents
  • embedding some recent initiatives in areas such as evaluation, appraisal and assessment
  • building on efforts to lift Māori student achievement and student achievement in written language.

School leaders and teachers should further refine the analysis and reporting of student achievement to ensure that:

  • children who need to make accelerated progress are doing so
  • progress and achievement across all learning areas are reported to the board and parents over time.

Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern

22 September 2016

About the school

Location

Prebbleton

Ministry of Education profile number

3478

School type

Full primary

School roll

461

Gender composition

Girls 47%; Boys 53%

Ethnic composition

Pākehā

Maori

Asian

Pacific

Other ethnicities

85%

5%

5%

1%

4%

Review team on site

August 2016

Date of this report

22 September 2016

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

February 2013

September 2009

September 2006