Remuera Intermediate - 08/08/2014

Findings

Students at Remuera Intermediate School receive a high quality education that prepares them well to make choices for their future. The school is committed to providing an inclusive environment where students experience success as learners. A strong culture of high expectations for students and staff pervades the school.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in four-to-five years.

1 Context

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

Remuera Intermediate School, a large multicultural intermediate school in Auckland, continues to provide high quality education for its local and international students in Years 7 and 8. Since ERO’s 2010 review, the Māori roll has remained constant and constitutes nine percent of the school roll. The number of students with Pacific heritage has grown to nine percent. Chinese and Indian students make up a further twenty-two percent of the school roll. Approximately thirty-nine percent of students come from outside the school zone.

Respect for and inclusion for all continue to be features of this school. Students enjoy their learning and respond well to the school’s high expectations for their progress and achievement. Close relationships between the school and its community benefit students’ learning.

Over the past four years, the school has continued to demonstrate its focus on improvement. An important development has been how leaders and teachers use a systematic yet flexible approach to identify and promote students’ individual learning. Other initiatives have provided students with greater access to new and interesting learning opportunities. The school curriculum continues to increase its responsiveness to the school’s diverse population.

2 Learning

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

Student achievement information is used very effectively to inform decision making for teaching and learning. It is well used to make and review resourcing decisions, particularly for students who are at risk of not achieving. Leaders and trustees are very aware that they have only two years to make a difference for the learners in their care. This sense of urgency promotes timely support interventions for students.

Student enjoyment and engagement in learning is highly evident. Their interest in learning and their motivation to succeed contribute to the school’s high levels of student achievement. It is further evident in the students’ success in individual and group sporting, artistic and cultural competitions.

School achievement information shows that, overall, students are achieving well above National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. The school is very well placed to achieve the government target of eighty-five percent of students at or above National Standards by 2017. The board uses achievement information to set charter targets that are appropriately focused on improved outcomes for students.

Māori and Pacific student achievement is above national comparisons. School information clearly shows that Māori and Pacific students respond well to the high levels of support to make good progress over their two years at this school. School leaders are intent on achieving parity between Māori and Pacific students’ achievement results and those of the whole school.

The school has good evidence of the success of its support programmes and initiatives. Data show that most of the students involved in these programmes are making good progress, and that the progress of some students is significantly accelerated. Individual learning plans for students with high learning needs show the school’s commitment to the progress and achievement for these students.

Teachers have worked consistently to develop valid and reliable assessment processes. Reports give parents good information about their child’s learning in relation to the National Standards and to their achievement across the curriculum. These reports continue to be refined over time.

ERO and school leaders discussed next steps to further enhance the use of achievement information. These included:

  • continuing to build student knowledge and ownership of their own learning
  • analysing of student achievement information more deeply, particularly with regard to ethnicities and cohorts, to identify trends and patterns over time.

3 Curriculum

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

The curriculum is highly effective in engaging students in learning. Factors that promote and support student learning and enrich the curriculum include:

  • a strongly coherent curriculum where students experience a wide variety of opportunities to participate and show leadership in academic, sport, art and cultural activities
  • ongoing curriculum review that is strongly aligned with the principles of The New Zealand Curriculum
  • the capacity of teachers to collaborate and inquire into their own practice to provide effective teaching and learning
  • the board’s commitment to resourcing an environment that prepares students for future learning, including provision of digital technologies as a teaching and learning tool.

The value the school places on student wellbeing is strongly evident through:

  • the emphasis given to the inclusion of, and provision for, all learners and their interests
  • the high levels of pastoral support
  • the very effective learning support network that caters for students with moderate and high needs.

Next steps for curriculum development include:

  • expanding the student wellbeing survey to include all students in Years 7 and 8
  • developing a programme of digital citizenship to enhance curriculum and relevant learning experiences.

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

Trustees, leaders and teachers strongly support and accept shared responsibility for educational success for Māori, as Māori.

This commitment to Māori success is demonstrated through:

  • the value placed on Māori students’ language, culture and identity
  • the involvement of Māori students in relevant aspects of school direction and decision making
  • the promotion of success for Māori students through leadership roles
  • the inclusion of Māori perspectives in all teachers’ planning and classroom programmes.

Māori students spoken to during the review shared their sense of pride in being a Māori student at Remuera Intermediate School.

The board and senior leaders value the positive relationship they have with Māori parents, whānau and the community. They are keen to extend and investigate their parent and student feedback to further evaluate the extent to which they are meeting the aspirations that Māori parents and family/whānau have for their children.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is very well placed to sustain its current good practices and continue to grow its performance on the basis of:

  • a highly inclusive learning environment and practices that value involvement from students, their parents and families/whānau, and teachers
  • a focus on ongoing improvement, that is informed by reliable evidence from self review
  • strong alignment between strategic and annual plans, curriculum implementation, and programmes and initiatives that lead to positive outcomes for students
  • effective professional leadership by the principal, the senior management team, and other leaders with management responsibilities
  • experienced and supportive trustees who are committed to school improvement and are knowledgeable about their governance responsibilities.

Contribution to, and working with, the wider educational community is a strength of the school. School leaders are active in smaller cluster groups that place priority on improving educational opportunities for students. They are building stronger relationships with contributing schools and destination high schools to facilitate good transitions for students.

To enhance their practice, trustees are now considering further ways to evaluate the board’s effectiveness in line with the school’s inquiry process.

Provision for international students

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

The school generally has an average of 20 international students enrolled at any one time. However, as a result of long and short-term enrolments, there have been occasions over the past five years where up to 100 international students have enjoyed care and education at this school. The majority of these students come from Asian countries and, whilst in New Zealand, live mainly with their parents or relatives.

International students affirm the school’s highly inclusive and broad educational programme. Their wellbeing is strongly supported by effective pastoral systems. The director for international students closely monitors international student welfare and accommodation. When numbers are high, this can be a complex task. School leaders agree that additional staffing could enhance the sustainability of this role.

International student achievement is closely monitored. Students make very good progress in English language learning and are successful in a large variety of academic, sporting and cultural endeavours. Leaders agree that it would be useful to specifically report to the board about the progress and achievement of international students across the curriculum.

High quality record keeping and ongoing review of care and provision for international students helps ensure that these students are well catered for. Their parents regularly share their appreciation for the positive experiences the school provides for their children.

ERO’s investigations confirmed that the school’s self-review process for international students is thorough.

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

Students at Remuera Intermediate School receive a high quality education that prepares them well to make choices for their future. The school is committed to providing an inclusive environment where students experience success as learners. A strong culture of high expectations for students and staff pervades the school.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in four-to-five years.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

8 August 2014

About the School

Location

Remuera, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

1461

School type

Intermediate (Years 7 to 8)

School roll

912

Number of international students

27

Gender composition

Boys 50% Girls 50%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

Māori

Chinese

Indian

Samoan

Tongan

South East Asian

African

Middle Eastern

Other Asian

Other European

Other

42%

9%

13%

9%

4%

3%

2%

1%

1%

7%

5%

4%

Review team on site

June 2014

Date of this report

8 August 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

May 2010

May 2007

August 2003