Ratapiko School - 21/08/2019

School Context

Ratapiko School is a rural school in central Taranaki. There are 23 students and nine identify as Māori on the roll. The school is currently experiencing roll growth.

The school’s vision ‘strive for excellence in all we do’ underpins the school’s aim to maximise learner achievement. There is a particular focus on achieving equitable access to learning and positive outcomes for all students, empowering them to be confident, connected and actively involved learners.

Learning priorities identified in the school values: ‘respect, responsibility, ready to learn – whakaute, takohanga, takatu, ako’ underpin outcomes for students to be:

  • actively engaged and achieve success
  • positive and to persevere
  • inquisitive, reflective and resilient
  • guardians of their environment
  • inclusive and tolerant of differences and diversity.

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

  • achievement for reading, writing and mathematics against The New Zealand Curriculum levels
  • progress in relation to school targets
  • attendance.

There have been changes to staffing over the past year, and new trustees elected to the board in June 2019. Staff are participating in centrally funded professional learning and development to support building teachers’ literacy capability.

The school is a member of the Inglewood 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’s outcomes are continuing to improve towards equitable and excellent outcomes for all students. End of 2018 data indicates that a large majority of students achieved at or above expectation in reading and mathematics, and half in writing.

Student achievement information over the past three years indicates that a greater percentage of students achieved at or above expectation in reading and mathematics.

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

The school continues to focus on accelerating learning for those students who need this.

Of the students identified, school reported progress information for 2018 shows that the majority of those students made progress in reading and some students in writing and mathematics.

Mid-2019 data, for identified target students, shows that many students have made accelerated progress in reading, writing or mathematics, with some identified on track to be at expected levels of achievement by the end of the year.

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?

School values of ‘respect, responsibility and ready to learn’ are clearly evident in classrooms. Students are well-engaged through focused learning opportunities that integrate curriculum areas and relevant contexts including interactions with local whānau and the wider community. A range of teaching approaches effectively support students to know about and manage their own learning and contribute to the development of others in their class. There are increased opportunities to experience and understand te ao Māori.

The wellbeing and learning goals of students with additional and complex needs are well known by staff. Programmes to support these students are thoroughly planned and managed.

Staff collect an appropriate and useful range of information about student progress and achievement. They use this information to plan deliberate learning opportunities based on identified needs of individuals. The current professional development in writing is supporting this improved practice.

The principal’s leadership focuses purposefully on improving student outcomes through building teacher confidence and capability, and the provision of an environment that is conducive to learning. Staff reflect collaboratively and frequently on how their teaching practice is improving learning and wellbeing outcomes for students. Meaningful changes are made to processes and practices as result of these reflections.

Trustees are well informed through receiving comprehensive, regular information about student progress and achievement that allows them to identify and discuss challenges and opportunities for change. They ensure that school resources are appropriately allocated to learning areas of greatest need. Trustees are supportive of staff.

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

ERO identifies and the principal agrees that rewording annual targets to more closely focus on the number of students whose learning needs acceleration is a next step. This should assist staff and trustees to have a clearer understanding of what works, what isn’t working and what needs to change to further improve outcomes.

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 Children’s Act 2014.

4 ERO’s Overall Judgement

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO’s overall evaluation judgement of Ratapiko School’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Well placed.

ERO’s Framework: Overall School Performance is available on ERO’s website.

5 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • a culture of collaboration among staff, trustees and whānau that maintains clear expectations for teaching and learning across the school
  • clear direction setting that establishes challenging goals for student achievement
  • alignment of school priorities and values that are consistently enacted through to the curriculum and class programmes.

Next steps

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

  • leaders and trustees extended use of data to better identify students whose learning needs acceleration, and to know about what is working well for students’ learning and where improvements are needed.

Phillip Cowie

Director Review and Improvement Services Central

Central Region

21 August 2019

About the school

Location

Ratapiko, Taranaki

Ministry of Education profile number

2227

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

23

Gender composition

Male 14, Female 9

Ethnic composition

Māori 9
NZ European/Pākehā 14

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

Yes

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

July 2019

Date of this report

21 August 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review August 2016
Education Review May 2013
Education review July 2010