Tasman Bay Christian School - 05/08/2015

Findings

Tasman Bay Christian School is a small rural, Year 1 to 8 primary school with a positive, caring and supportive climate. Students achieve well, particularly in reading and mathematics. The school’s curriculum gives appropriate emphasis to promoting students’ wellbeing. The school is responsive to the views of parents and the community.

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?

Tasman Bay Christian School is a small rural, Year 1 to 8 primary school. Students benefit from spacious grounds and modern facilities. The school’s special character is most clearly evident in the way the Christian vision and values are promoted across the school. The school provides a free bus service for students who attend from a wide geographical area.

Leaders and teachers know their students and their families well. This helps them to be responsive to students’ strengths, interests and needs and to parents’ aspirations for their children.

The school is involved in a local educational learning cluster. This provides useful opportunities for professional support and learning for school leaders and teachers.

The school has made some progress towards meeting the recommendations from the 2012 ERO review. Some areas, including the analysis and use of data at class level and the development of some policies and procedures need further attention.

2 Learning

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

The school effectively uses achievement information to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement.

The 2014 achievement data shows very good improvement in reading and mathematics. Recent involvement in a Ministry of Education contract in mathematics, has supported teachers to use student assessment more effectively, and to apply suitable teaching practices that engage and help students to learn.

Good practice to support students’ learning includes:

  • use of learning intentions and success criteria to promote student engagement
  • use of rubrics to assist students to become more independent with their self evaluation
  • opportunities for differentiated learning to support students with varying needs
  • good use of questioning to promote student thinking.

Students most at risk of not achieving are well supported by teacher aides.

Areas for review and development

ERO identified, and the board and principal agrees, that school leaders should further refine the way targets are set, and regularly review and report on learning support programmes to the board.

3 Curriculum

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

The school’s curriculum gives appropriate emphasis to promoting and supporting student learning.

The school provides a calm, settled environment that is caring and inclusive. Student enjoyment of learning and participation in school life is evident. Students are proud of their school, positive about support they receive and the way teachers help them with their learning.

Students’ engagement in learning is fostered through:

  • the provision of a good variety of activities, within and beyond the school, to support and extend their learning
  • a range of opportunities for students to express their ideas
  • a variety of leadership opportunities.

Parents are actively involved in their children’s learning. They have regular opportunities to lead and celebrate their learning with parents. Students can also access their learning programmes online at home, where parents can view and assist with their learning.

Teachers are becoming increasingly reflective. They make appropriate changes to their practices and programmes to better meet identified needs.

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

The school is making some progress for Māori achieving success as Māori.

The school’s 2014 achievement information shows that Māori students are achieving well in mathematics and reading.

Students have good opportunities for involvement in cultural events and practices, including kapa haka, waiata and karakia. During regular school-wide assemblies, students have meaningful opportunities to lead many aspects of Māori culture.

In 2014 the principal began to develop priorities for further improvement of the way the school is promoting success for Māori as Māori.

Areas for review and development

There are good levels of expertise in the local Māori community. The school now needs to use these to more effectively strengthen partnerships with parents of Māori students.

The school also needs to improve planning processes to include and report on more specific goals for Māori students.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is well placed to improve its performance.

The board is committed to improving student achievement and wellbeing. Trustees are focused on using their individual expertise and skills appropriately to improve the school.

The board provides good opportunities for parents and the community to express their views. They have established a working group to investigate priorities and set directions to support roll growth and school promotion.

Areas for review and development

The board and principal have identified that they now need to improve self review by:

  • developing clear procedures and processes
  • ensuring self reviews identify the impact of initiatives on learning and school improvement.

Since the 2012 review, leaders have improved the school’s appraisal system. They are aware they now need to strengthen this process to:

  • ensure that all appraisals are signed and dated in an appropriate manner
  • develop stronger links between appraisal and teaching as inquiry
  • improve some aspects of the principal's external appraisal by identifying next steps for ongoing development.

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.

ERO identified areas of non-compliance during the on-site stage of the review which has a possible impact on the student or staff safety.

In order to address the areas of non-compliance, the board of trustees must ensure that all:

  1. health and safety policies, procedures, guidelines and practices are in place, monitored and reported to the board [NAG 5]
  2. Police vetting is up to date. [Education Act 1989 section 78C]

Conclusion

Tasman Bay Christian School is a small rural, Year 1 to 8 primary school with a positive, caring and supportive climate. Students achieve well, particularly in reading and mathematics. The school’s curriculum gives appropriate emphasis to promoting students’ wellbeing. The school is responsive to the views of parents and the community.

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

Chris Rowe

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern (Acting)

5 August 2015

About the School

Location

Upper Moutere, Tasman

Ministry of Education profile number

1178

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

50

Gender composition

Girls 23

Boys 27

Ethnic composition

Pākehā

Māori

Pacific

Other ethnicities

32

10

5

3

Review team on site

June 2015

Date of this report

5 August 2015

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review

Education Review

Supplementary Review

June 2012

April 2008

September 2005