Reignier Catholic School - 01/08/2019

School Context

Reignier Catholic School, in the Napier suburb of Greenmeadows, has children in Years 1-6. At the time of this ERO evaluation, the roll of 188 students includes 25 who identify as Māori and 38 from a wide range of other ethnic groups. There are four international students attending.

The special Catholic character is upheld through the values of excellence, integrity, justice, community and respect. Manaakitanga and whanaungatanga promote positive relationships in the school and with whānau.

Since the August 2016 ERO evaluation a new principal was appointed. There have been new staff appointed and developments in the way leadership is distributed across the school. Changes in trustees and proprietors’ representatives on the board have recently taken place.

Annual achievement targets are to increase the number of students achieving at or above the curriculum level in reading, writing and mathematics.

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

  • reading, writing and mathematics.

The school’s special character has been a major focus for staff development. All teachers are completing papers to strengthen faith and knowledge. Leaders and teachers have engaged in several professional and learning opportunities across a range of curriculum areas.

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 achievement information shows consistently positive outcomes for students in literacy and mathematics, as overall most students achieve to expectations across reading, writing and mathematics.

School reported achievement information at the end of 2018 identifies that almost all Māori students achieved at or above curriculum expectations in reading and mathematics, with most achieving at and above in writing.

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

The school effectively identifies, plans for, implements strategies and monitors the progress of those students whose learning needs accelerating in reading, writing and mathematics. Most students who the school identified in 2018 for acceleration in writing did so. Less than half identified for reading and mathematics had learning accelerated. Leaders recognise that moving students to achieve above expectation is an ongoing focus.

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?

The school has a coherent approach to raising student achievement and promoting equity and excellence. Trustees, leaders and teachers have a strong focus on, and a collaborative approach to, improvements to support student’s learning, progress and achievement. Assessment information for reading, writing and mathematics is used well to progress student learning.

The school is clearly focused on student wellbeing and their success as learners. Children identified with additional learning needs are provided with a range of resources to assist them to achieve success. There is a collaborative approach to raising the achievement of all students. Consultation with parents assists leaders, teachers and trustees to determine what is important for students. The parent community contributes to decision making in a range of contexts. They are well informed about school developments.

Trustees demonstrate a good understanding of their stewardship role. Trustee strengths and skills are valued and contribute to building their collective capabilities. Reporting from teachers and leaders ensures trustees are well informed about student achievement when making resourcing decisions.

The school’s continual focus on developing good practice to support Māori learners’ education as Māori is evident in the positive outcomes for these students. The Māori Achievement Collaborative plan provides a base for the school to support Māori success as Māori, so that students can reach their potential in all areas of school. Positive engagement with whānau supports students’ learning. Professional learning is aligned to the ongoing building of teachers’ capacity and capability, with a current focus on strengthening engagement with whānau.

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

The school has yet to clearly define the valued outcomes for students at Reignier Catholic School in relation to the breadth of the curriculum. The current curriculum requires updating and refreshing to reflect how children will become confident, connected, actively involved, lifelong learners as encapsulated through The New Zealand Curriculum. Leaders, staff and trustees need to consider how students will have learning opportunities to experience the breadth of the curriculum. Consideration must be given to how the curriculum can be personalised and localised to reflect what is important at Reignier Catholic School.

The strategic plan and curriculum are aspects of operation that need updating and refreshing to reflect the school’s direction. Integral to this is the use of internal evaluation to drive improvement and assist trustees, leaders and teachers to assess what is and is not working for students’ learning, acceleration, progress and achievement.

3 Other Matters

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to theEducation (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016(the Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

At the time of this review there were four international students attending the school.

International students’ welfare needs are well supported, and they benefit from an inclusive environment. They participate in a range of cultural and sporting activities at the school and in the wider community.

4 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.

Areas for improved compliance practice

To improve compliance practice, the board of trustees should strengthen processes around the review of policies and procedures to ensure all current requirements are met. The school should prioritise reviewing:

  • the appointments policy
  • the child protection policy to meet the requirements of the Children’s Act 2014.

5 ERO’s Overall Judgement

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO’s overall evaluation judgement of Reignier Catholic 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.

6 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • shared direction and partnership of the board and leadership, informed by community consultation, that focuses on student achievement, wellbeing and community involvement
  • identifying students’ learning needs, that enables appropriate individual support to achieve equitable outcomes
  • direction setting by the board of trustees, that establishes goals for student achievement and closely monitors progress.

Next steps

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

  • curriculum development so that students have a breadth of learning opportunities
  • use of evaluation to determine the effectiveness of change and innovation on students’ learning and to adapt practices accordingly.

Phillip Cowie

Director Review and Improvement Services

Central Region

1 August 2019

About the school

Location

Napier

Ministry of Education profile number

2663

School type

Contributing (Years 1 - 6)

School roll

188

Gender composition

Female 51%, Male 49%

Ethnic composition

Māori 13%
NZ European/Pākehā 66%
Other ethnic groups 21%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

Yes

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

June 2019

Date of this report

1 August 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review August 2016
Education Review September 2013
Education Review July 2010