Silverstream (South) Primary School - 01/02/2018

School Context

Silverstream (South) Primary School is a Years 1 to 6 contributing school located in Mosgiel, Dunedin. The roll has steadily increased in 2017. There are now 282 children with 60 who identify as Māori, 18 Pacific and 16 are Syrian refugee students.

The school’s vision is stated as ‘Akoranga Manawanui – Learning to be the best that we can be’. This is underpinned by three key values:

  • respect for self – aroha kia koe
  • respect for others – aroha ki te tangata
  • respect for the environment – aroha ki te taiao.

Key priorities of the school are to:

  • grow professional practice to facilitate effective learning
  • ensure the involvement with and by Māori whānau is increased
  • maximise learning spaces for now and in the future
  • raise the visibility and profile of Silverstream (South) School.

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

  • reading, writing and mathematics
  • inquiry skills
  • health and physical education
  • various aspects of wellbeing.

A new principal was appointed at the beginning of Term 3, 2016. In 2017, the senior leadership team was expanded. Teaching staff has been stable for a number of years. The board is a mix of long-standing and newly-elected trustees. The school has been involved in Ministry of Education funded professional learning for mathematics over the last two years.

Evaluation Findings

1 Equity and excellence – valued outcomes for students

1.1 How well is the school achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for all its students?

The school can demonstrate it is achieving equitable outcomes for most students. Achievement trends have been consistent over time, with some improved levels for reading and mathematics. Over the last three years most students have achieved at or above expectations in reading and mathematics. The majority have achieved at or above in writing. There was a slight downward trend in 2016 in writing achievement. The school has identified there is disparity for boys in writing.

Overall there are equitable outcomes for students of all ethnicities. Students with additional learning and wellbeing needs, including students for whom English is an additional language, are well supported to make progress in their learning.

1.2 How effectively does this school respond to those Māori and other students whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school responds well to Māori and other students whose learning needs acceleration. The school can consistently show that greater proportions of all students achieve at or above national expectations by the end of Year 6. All students who need to make progress in their learning are identified, individually planned for, and closely monitored within their class and syndicate. Learning information shows that many target students have made accelerated progress in their learning, particularly for mathematics in 2017.

2 School conditions for equity and excellence

2.1 What school processes and practices are effective in enabling achievement of equity and excellence?

Students benefit from a broad, localised and responsive curriculum that provides for their strengths and needs. Their learning benefits from the supportive, caring relationships they have with their teachers and each other. There are strong systems in place to support individual students in their learning. A number of targeted initiatives are effectively enhancing engagement, motivation, wellbeing and learning. These include:

  • a play-based transition programme to better meet the needs of new entrants
  • a sports-based learning programme that responds to diverse learning needs of some students
  • board and community funded scholarships to support equity
  • additional programmes to support wellbeing and learning needs, such as, a lunch-time homework club.

The school has developed effective partnerships for learning. Leaders regularly draw on the expertise of external and community agencies to support students’ learning and wellbeing. They have established strong links with local early learning services. Parents are well supported to help their children’s learning at home.

The board is highly committed to students’ learning, wellbeing and progress. They significantly resource skilled teacher aides to support individual and group programmes in and out of the class.

The principal and leaders foster strong collaborative relationships across the school, where everyone feels valued. These continue to enhance the positive environment for teaching and learning. Leaders model effective practice by inquiries (internal evaluation) that evaluate the impact of initiatives and programmes. This and ongoing professional development continue to improve the effectiveness of teaching and learning.

Leaders, staff, community and the board have collectively redeveloped the vision and values of the school. This has included seeking external expertise to meaningfully integrate Te ao Māori perspectives within the vision and values, and school practices. These give a clear strategic direction for the school.

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

Some processes need to be refined and embedded to continue the good practices that are contributing to equity and excellence.

The board and the leaders need to:

  • redevelop the school’s self-review timetable to better reflect the school’s priorities, vision and valued outcomes
  • extend internal evaluation to include reviewing how well the school’s vision, values and priorities are enacted
  • make better use of school-wide data to show how well students achieve the school’s valued outcomes
  • show sufficiency of progress all students (including target students) make during each year.

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:

  • a culture of collaboration among leaders, teachers, parents and whānau, that maintains high expectations for teaching and learning throughout the school
  • a responsive curriculum that is effectively supporting the motivation and engagement of children in their learning
  • pastoral care, that systematically responds to students’ needs, promotes their wellbeing and supports their learning success
  • clear direction setting by the board and leaders that enables innovation to lift achievement.

Next steps

For sustained improvement and future learner success, development priorities are in extending and consolidating internal evaluation practice to monitor and evaluate the impact of programmes and better show progress towards the school’s vision and valued outcomes.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Dr Lesley Paterson
Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern

Te Waipounamu - Southern Region

1 February 2018

About the school 



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing Primary, Years 1 to 6

School roll


Gender composition

Boys:  52%

Girls:  48%

Ethnic composition

Māori:    21%

Pākeha  67%

Pacific:    6%

Other:     6%

Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

November 2107

Date of this report

1 February 2018

Most recent ERO reports

August 2014

July 2011

March 2008