St Matthew's Collegiate (Masterton) - 24/09/2014

Findings

Sound management, teaching and governance contribute to high levels of student achievement and progress. Students are engaged and successfully participate in a wide range of social, cultural and sporting activities. Year 12 and 13 students attend classes at the coeducational senior college at Rathkeale College. The college's Anglican special character is evident.

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

1 Context

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

St Matthew’s Collegiate School in Masterton is a state integrated school for girls. It caters for 350 students in Years 7 to 13 and 9% identify as Māori. Students in Years 12 and 13 attend classes at the coeducational senior college at Rathkeale College.

The newly appointed principal has made significant changes to address areas for development identified in the October 2011 ERO report. The board has appointed a deputy principal who will take up duties in 2015.

The board of trustees governs the school and The Trinity Schools’ Trust Board is responsible for the oversight of the school’s special Anglican character, property and the boarding houses. The school offers a programme of upholding worship, religious studies and a strong moral code based on Christian standards and values.

The school’s special character is highly evident and continues to be a school focus. It is integral to the vision for students ‘to seek excellence in every aspect of their academic, cultural, social and sporting lives.’ Students are strongly encouraged to contribute their service to the school and wider local community.

2 Learning

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

The board and teachers make very good use of achievement information to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement.

Teachers of Years 7 and 8 students use a well-considered range of assessment tools to inform judgements about students' achievement in relation to the National Standards. Most students achieve at or above against the Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. Many make accelerated progress.

Students at risk of not achieving are identified and tracked. The school has evidence to show that specific teaching strategies are making a positive impact on their learning.

Teachers of students in Years 9 and 10 have identified the need to provide better evidence of student achievement at this level. The school is developing a process for improved tracking of learning in order to better identify and report progress and achievement.

Students are highly successful in achieving National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) qualifications. Almost all students stay at school to at least the age of seventeen, and in 2013 all leavers left with at least an NCEA Level 1 qualification. New Zealand Scholarships results and achievement of NCEAs with merit or excellence are high. The college has targeted an even higher expectation for these merit and excellence endorsements.

Parents receive comprehensive information about their daughter’s progress through school reports and portfolios. Increasing use of emailing and texting enhances communication about student achievement.

3 Curriculum

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

St Matthew’s curriculum effectively promotes and supports student learning. Students are offered a range of subjects and there is an expectation that all will successfully participate in the many social, cultural and sporting activities offered.

The senior leadership team and board recognise the constant need to review the curriculum to improve suitable pathways for each student. Current review is informed by community consultation.

Most teachers establish a clear direction and purpose for lessons. They motivate and engage students by using an appropriate range of teaching strategies.

Positive, respectful classroom interactions and focused, engaged student dispositions strongly contribute to the high level of achievement. Throughout the school there is an atmosphere of learning, caring and concern. Wellbeing is paramount. Strong support from staff and peers, and a clear family feeling within the school contribute to student resilience.

It is timely, during the planned curriculum review, for staff to provide contexts for learning and Māori perspectives to enhance students’ bicultural awareness and understanding. Outcomes from teacher professional development in te reo Māori need to be more evident in the classroom. Through these changes Māori students’ language, culture and identity are likely to be better promoted.

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

Students who identify as Māori are academically successful and are fully engaged with their learning and in the life of the school.

Planned and well-considered initiatives are implemented to further improve success for Māori students. These initiatives are the result of collaborative reflection initiated by the special education needs coordinator (SENCO) who, with the senior leadership team, has specific responsibility for Māori student wellbeing.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

St Matthew’s Collegiate is well placed to sustain and improve its performance. The board, principal and teachers have high expectations and a culture of continuous improvement. Sound systems and guidelines facilitate effective school governance.

The board has developed well-considered strategic and annual plans with specific targets that are appropriately monitored. The review process is informed by regular student achievement information from the principal and heads of departments. The overall review process is becoming more robust as teachers become more outcome focused.

The recently appointed principal has led well-considered change through a collaborative and caring approach. Teachers have embraced the new approach to performance appraisal which is supportive, developmental and becoming increasingly robust.

The strong community links, consultation and communication contribute to the school’s ability to sustain and improve its performance. Parent engagement, support and participation are strengths.

Provision for international students

St Matthew’s Collegiate 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 1889. The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the code.

At the time of the review there were nine international students from Japan, New Caledonia, Thailand and Korea.

International students receive high quality pastoral care, which includes effective orientation, as well as ongoing support from boarding school staff.

Students indicate that they receive sound learning assistance from teachers and other students. Teachers should consider further development of appropriate learning resources in more curriculum areas.

The English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) teachers support students’ competency in literacy and class work. International students make good progress in their academic studies.

The international student coordinator works closely with the manager of the boarding houses to ensure students’ wellbeing and learning. Regular meetings are held with the coordinator, the dean of boarding, ESOL teacher and subject teachers. Review is ongoing and monthly reports are received by the board on the students' achievement.

Provision for students in the school hostel

St Matthew’s Collegiate is a day and boarding school. The boarding school handbook states that the aims of the school and its boarding houses are inseparable. The objectives of a family environment, full participation in boarding life, involvement of parents and guardians, and employing a wellqualified staff are being achieved.

The boarding houses are Hampton House for Years 12 to 13 students and Main House for Years 7 to 11. They accommodate 101 students, 29% of the school roll. This year Hampton has 39 senior students and Main 70 students. The boarding houses are owned by Trinity Schools’ Trust and governed by St Matthew’s Collegiate Proprietors’ Board.

The dean of boarding focuses on providing a safe emotional and physical environment for students. The houses are well maintained and refurbishing is continuing. Students are carefully supervised and supported, and every effort is made to create a family atmosphere. Students develop respectful and positive relationships with staff and with each other.

Regular review of student care and welfare by management includes student voice. These reviews allow for ongoing improvement of boarding procedures.

An appropriate next step is to develop the potential leadership opportunities for senior students in Hampton House.

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.

An area of non-compliance was identified during the review:

the board must establish and implement procedures for the police vetting of employees and contractors.[Section 78C Education Act 1989]

Conclusion

Sound management, teaching and governance contribute to high levels of student achievement and progress. Students are engaged and successfully participate in a wide range of social, cultural and sporting activities. Year 12 and 13 students attend classes at the coeducational senior college at Rathkeale College. The college's Anglican special character is evident.

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

index-html-m2a7690f7.gifJoyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services Central Region

24 September 2014

About the School

Location

Masterton

Ministry of Education profile number

246

School type

State Integrated Secondary (Years 7 to 13)

School roll

350

Number of international students

9

Gender composition

Girls 100%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

Māori

Other ethnic groups

88%

9%

3%

Special Features

Boarding hostels

Review team on site

August 2014

Date of this report

24 September 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review
Education Review
Education Review

October 2011
October 2008
August 2005