Pyes Pa Road School - 19/04/2018

School Context

Pyes Pa Road School is a rural full primary, located 17 kilometres south of Tauranga, catering for children from Years 1 to 8. The school has a growing roll of 210 students of whom 34 identify as Māori.

The school’s vision statement is ‘to develop students to be confident, connected, actively involved life-long learners’. School goals relate to literacy, numeracy, improving teacher capability, Māori and Pacific achievement, e-learning, culturally responsive and relational pedagogy, and physical education. Annual targets are focused on accelerating the progress and achievement of students below expected levels in reading, writing and mathematics.

Since the 2014 ERO report there have been significant staff changes and new trustees elected. A new principal was appointed in May 2017 and an assistant principal in January 2018.

Leaders and teachers regularly report to the board, school-wide information about outcomes for students in the following areas:

  • reading, writing, and mathematics.

Pyes Pa School is part of the Tauranga Peninsular Community of Learning|Kāhui Ako.

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 achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for most of its students. School achievement information at the end of 2017 showed that most students achieved at or above national expectations in reading, mathematics and writing. Overall levels of achievement in reading and writing between 2015 and 2017 decreased slightly. There is a small disparity of achievement between Māori and other students in reading and writing. Māori boys achieve at lower levels in writing than other students.

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

Teachers are able to show accelerated progress for individual students. Leaders now need to use this information to report accelerated progress for identified groups of at-risk students.

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 promote conditions that support the achievement of equity and excellence, and acceleration of learning. The recently established leadership team works collaboratively and is building relational trust. They have reviewed the school charter and curriculum and are providing increased professional learning and development through the Tauranga Peninsular Community of Leaning and networking opportunities. There are clear expectations for assessment, teaching and learning programmes in literacy and mathematics. These conditions are contributing to shared and high expectations for teaching and learning.

The curriculum is responsive and meaningful. Connections to students’ lives, prior learning and interesting real-world contexts are engaging for students. There is an appropriate focus on reading, writing and mathematics. Classroom teachers know their target students well and use assessment information to plan appropriate programmes and monitor their progress. The learning environment is managed in ways that support participation, and engagement in learning. Community and cultural resources are integrated in to relevant aspects of the school curriculum. Relationships are respectful and productive. Students benefit from caring, collaborative learning environments.

The school’s inclusive culture effectively promotes equitable opportunities for students. Teachers have a holistic view of students where difference and diversity are valued. There are positive and effective student centred relationships with whānau and external agencies. The Special Education Needs Coordinator (SENCO) has well established professional relationships with external agencies, parents and whānau. Students with additional leaning needs participate in learning opportunities that provide appropriate support and challenge.

Leaders and teachers have effectively established productive learning partnerships with parents and whānau. Parents, whānau and the community are welcomed and involved in school activities as respected and valued partners in learning. A positive approach to transition into the school ensures students and parents are made to feel welcome, affirmed and actively engaged in the life of the school.

The board actively represents and serves the school and community in its stewardship role. It is focused on student learning and wellbeing. Trustees have a shared understanding of their roles and responsibilities and use their collective knowledge, expertise and experience to make informed governance decisions. The board has a strong focus on providing a safe physical and emotional environment. The highly committed and well informed board of trustees is focused on improving student outcomes and school development.

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

Strengthening student agency is an agreed area for development. Teaching practice should include the use of learning progressions to allow students, to track their achievement, identify their specific next learning goal and lead their own learning.   

The management and use of school-wide achievement data needs refining. Leaders now need to report to the board of trustees school-wide information about the rates of expected and accelerated progress for identified groups of at-risk students.

School targets need to be more specifically focus on students needing to make accelerated progress in reading, writing and mathematics. This is necessary to:

  • monitor and track the progress and achievement of these learners
  • align annual school-wide targets to teacher planning and practice
  • strengthen the internal evaluation of the effectiveness of the school’s response to at-risk students.

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:

  • professional leadership that is committed to the ongoing improvement of student outcomes
  • a school curriculum that strongly reflects the school’s vision, aims and aspirations for achievement and success
  • an inclusive school culture and community that engages in reciprocal, learning-centred relationships
  • governance that is highly committed to the success of the school and its students.

Next steps

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

  • building students’ assessment and learning to learn capabilities
  • school-wide targeted planning for acceleration.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Lynda Pura-Watson
Deputy Chief Review Officer

Te Tai Miringa - Waikato / Bay of Plenty Region

19 April 2018

About the school 


Pyes Pa, Tauranga

Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Full primary Years (1-8)

School roll


Gender composition

Boys      55%
Girls       45%

Ethnic composition

Pakeha                                  71%
Māori                                    16%
Samoan                                  4%
Other European                       5%
Other                                      4%

Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

February 2018

Date of this report

19 April 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review 2014
Education review September 2011
Education review December 2009