Pyes Pa Road School - 21/10/2014

Findings

Pyes Pa Road School is well placed to sustain and improve its performance. Trustees, leaders and staff are highly committed to raising student achievement. Students have many opportunities to learn and excel academically and culturally. Parent and whānau participation in school activities contributes to an holistic approach to the education of young people.

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

1 Context

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

Pyes Pa Road School is a rural full primary for Years 1 to 8 students, located 17 kilometres from central Tauranga. At the time of this review 167 students were enrolled including 35 who are affiliated to iwi throughout Aotearoa.

A team of both experienced and new trustees are providing effective school governance. Staff, students, parents and whānau have a strong sense of community and belonging. Traditions, the rural setting and an inclusive school culture are highly valued. Relationships are founded on mutual respect and trust. Parents and whānau are involved and contribute to a range of school activities, which enrich opportunities for student learning and enhance the home-school partnership.

Since ERO’s 2011 review trustees have continued to upgrade indoor and outdoor facilities. There are vibrant teaching and learning spaces including specialist classrooms for art, music, extension te reo Māori and learning support programmes. In addition, the school has made significant progress in the areas identified for development in the 2011 report. These include assessment practice, the integration of te reo Maori throughout the school, and the implementation of school curriculum review.

In 2013 an experienced principal joined the school. She has established a positive working relationship with the well-established teaching team. They are focused on professional learning and development that aims to improve teaching practice and outcomes for students.

2 Learning

How well does this school use achievement information to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement?

Student achievement information is effectively used by school leaders, teachers and trustees to make positive changes to student’s engagement, progress and achievement. The school has given priority to strengthening teacher’s analysis and interpretation of student assessment data. Teachers use student achievement to reflect on and inform their practice, plan programmes in response to student learning needs, and raise student achievement.

The school has reviewed and changed the written report format and the way information is shared with parents. Students, their parents and teacher now discuss and work together to promote student learning and determine future learning goals. Consideration should now be given to gaining parents' views in relation to the clarity and usefulness of written reports, particularly about how their child is progressing and achieving in relation to National Standards.

The principal and senior leaders manage student achievement information to inform targeted intervention and extension programmes, initiatives and self review. Trustees receive well-analysed and interpreted student achievement reports from the principal. This allows them to make appropriate decisions about how they can effectively support school targets to raise student achievement and improve student learning.

The school has well-developed practices for identifying individual students needs, abilities and talents. There is a shared belief that all students have a right to quality education and can make a contribution and learn. A comprehensive range of well-coordinated and regularly reviewed special programmes and initiatives support student learning. Monitoring and tracking of student achievement indicates accelerated progress for groups and individual students participating in these programmes.

The school’s end of year student achievement information for 2013 shows that in reading and mathematics the vast majority of students are achieving at and above the National Standard (NS). In writing most boys are achieving at and above the NS, however, their achievement level is lower than that of girls. Māori students are achieving at comparable levels to non-Māori students. Overall student achievement data shows that the school is already at the Ministry of Education goal of 85% of all students being at or above NS by 2017. The schools information also shows high levels of achievement in other curriculum areas including science, technology, te reo Māori, art and physical education.

3 Curriculum

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

Pyes Pa Road School curriculum is effective in promoting and supporting student learning. It is well designed and strongly reflects the principles, values and key competencies of The New Zealand Curriculum, and community priorities and aspirations for Pyes Pa Road learners. The following features contribute to the school’s holistic and comprehensive curriculum.

An appropriate emphasis on literacy and mathematics, which is well integrated into meaningful learning contexts.

The significant increase in the presence of Māori language, culture and identity in classroom programmes and practices.

Opportunities for students to learn and excel academically and culturally, which include performing and visual art, sporting activities and education outside the classroom (EOTC).

Vibrant learning environments that include purposeful use of information and communication technologies for enhancing teaching and learning.

ERO observed high levels of student engagement and enjoyment in learning and mutually respectful relationships throughout t he school. These relationships and levels of engagement are complemented by teachers’ in-depth knowledge of students.

The principal and teachers work collaboratively to ensure continuity of learning for students and consistency of expectations and teaching practice. They actively share ideas and strategies for raising the achievement of all students. These strategies help students to understand their progress, achievement and next steps in learning. Ongoing collaboration between teachers, students and parents should encourage the further development of specific learning inquiry goals, and contribute to student learning outcomes.

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

The Pyes Pa Road School charter effectively promotes educational success for Māori, as Māori, and their language, culture and identity is affirmed at all levels of the school.

The school has developed a culture that embraces the needs and aspirations of Māori students and their whānau. Management and teachers demonstrate this commitment through the natural integration of tikanga Māori in formal and informal routines and celebrations. There are weekly te reo Māori classes and a te reo Parekareka extension class. The teacher responsible for this initiative is supportive of all teachers as they integrate te reo and tikanga Māori into their classroom practice.

The school is developing strong connections with whānau and local places of significance for Māori. The board of trustees are actively involved in supporting the school's commitment to Māori students and whānau, and resource the school appropriately.

4 Sustainable Performance

How well placed is the school to sustain and improve its performance?

Pyes Pa Road School is well placed to sustain and improve its performance. Trustees are well informed and highly committed to raising student achievement.

The principal’s collaborative leadership style is pivotal in promoting an inclusive culture for learning and she is well supported by the associate principals. They effectively work with teachers to ensure that agreed expectations for teaching and learning are met.

Robust self review at governance, school leadership and classroom level informs school direction. There is a comprehensive teacher performance appraisal system focused on improving teacher practice and building a collaborative learning culture.

Sustaining partnerships with parents, whānau and the community continue to be a school priority. Parent and whānau participation in school events and activities contributes to a holistic approach to the education of young people.

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
  • processes for appointing staff
  • stand-downs, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions
  • attendance.

Conclusion

Pyes Pa Road School is well placed to sustain and improve its performance. Trustees, leaders and staff are highly committed to raising student achievement. Students have many opportunities to learn and excel academically and culturally. Parent and whānau participation in school activities contributes to an holistic approach to the education of young people.

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

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

21 October 2014

About the School

Location

Pyes Pa

Ministry of Education profile number

1916

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

167

Gender composition

Boys 56%

Girls 44%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

Māori

Other European

Other

69%

21%

9%

1%

Review team on site

August 2014

Date of this report

21 October 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

September 2011

December 2009

December 2006