St Francis Xavier School (Mornington) - 08/05/2017

Summary

St Francis Xavier is an integrated Catholic School with 89 children. Eight children identify as Māori, seven as Asian and three as Pacific.

Most parent representatives on the board of trustees were newly elected in 2016.

The school had made good progress against some of the recommendations in ERO’s 2014 report. Several of the next steps identified in the 2014 report continue to be areas of development.

Over the last three years, the school has maintained very good levels of achievement against the National Standards for all groups of children.

How well is the school achieving equitable outcomes for all children?

The school is successfully achieving equitable educational outcomes for its children. School leaders, teachers and support staff very effectively support all children who need extra help with their learning.

Overall, the school has effective processes to support all children to experience success in their learning. School leaders need to improve strategic planning and make better use of internal evaluation.

At the time of this review children’s wellbeing and learning were well supported within the school’s Catholic character and caring and respectful school culture. This has led to children being valued and actively engaged in their learning.

Children are achieving well. The school demonstrates strong progress toward achieving equity in educational outcomes, supported by effective, sustainable processes and practices.

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

Equity and excellence

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

The school very effectively supports Māori and other children who need extra help with their learning. Over the last three years most children achieved at or above the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. Māori and Pacific children achieve well against National Standards in all three areas.

Leaders, teachers and trustees prioritise children’s wellbeing. Practices, such as restorative justice, contribute to the positive learning environment and ensuring that the school’s vision and values are evident in the daily programmes.

Teachers make good use of procedures for assessing and identifying how well children are achieving against the National Standards.

School conditions supporting equity and excellence

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

School processes are mostly enabling children to achieve well in their learning.

Children experience a broad and integrated curriculum with a strong focus on literacy. Those with special interests and talents benefit from interesting extension opportunities across the curriculum.

All children who are at risk with their learning are very well supported. These children benefit from well-planned interventions and specialist support. Their progress is carefully monitored.

Teachers work closely to share ideas and resources about how to best support children. Staff trial different approaches to teaching and learning as a way to be responsive to children’s strengths and interests. They reflect on the impact of these and make changes.

The principal ensures the smooth day-to-day running of the school and plays an important role in maintaining the positive culture. He keeps trustees well informed about school programmes and operations. Decision making takes into consideration the views of different groups within the school.

Trustees have clear roles and responsibilities.

Sustainable development for equity and excellence

Existing good practices need to be strengthened.

What further developments are needed in school processes to achieve equity and excellence?

The School’s strategic plan does not clearly identify the school’s key priorities. Identifying the school’s key priorities will ensure that the board maintains its focus on the school’s most valued outcomes.

Trustees, leaders and teachers are not making good use of internal evaluation to inform decision making and the effectiveness of teaching and learning. Better evaluation practices would help leaders and trustees be assured of the quality of teaching and monitor progress towards their desired outcomes for children’s learning and other strategic priorities.

Children do not have a deep understanding of their progress and achievement. Students need to be able to identify their own learning needs and receive timely feedback about their learning.

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

  • 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.

Going forward

How well placed is the school to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it?

Children are achieving well. The school demonstrates strong progress toward achieving equity in educational outcomes, supported by effective, sustainable processes and practices.

Agreed next steps are to:

  • improve strategic and annual planning processes

  • deepen the understanding and use of internal evaluation

  • increase children’s understanding of their progress and achievement

  • support children to take greater responsibility for their own learning.

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

Dr Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer, Southern (Te Waipounamu)

8 May 2017

About the school 

Location

Dunedin

Ministry of Education profile number

3822

School type

Contributing Integrated Catholic

School roll

89

Gender composition

Boys: 45 Girls: 44

Ethnic composition

Māori 8

Pākehā 71

Asian 7

Pacific 3

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

February 2017

Date of this report

8 May 2017

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review May 2014

Education Review February 2011

Education Review October 2007