Trentham School - 05/11/2018

School Context

Trentham School in Upper Hutt has students in Years 1 to 6. Of the 448 learners enrolled, 34% identify as Māori and 8% as of Pacific heritage. The school has experienced roll growth since the December 2015 ERO report.

The school vision statement of Empowered Learners for the Future is underpinned by the GROW vision principles of: growth & kotahitanga; relationships & whānaungatanga; ownership & tangata whenuatanga/ako; and wonder & wānanga. The school’s values of: resilience, respect, team work, compassion, responsibility, integrity, creativity and excellence align with these principles.

The school’s strategic aims are focused on improving outcomes for all learners, particularly Māori, Pacific and those with identified needs, by delivering a rich and relevant curriculum that engages and empowers learners. Increased community engagement and ‘ensuring a safe, inclusive and innovative learning environment’ are school identified priorities.

The school’s annual student achievement targets for 2018, focus on increasing the number of students, particularly Māori and Pacific, achieving at their expected level in mathematics.

Leaders and teachers regularly report to the board, schoolwide information about outcomes for students in the following areas:

  • achievement in reading, writing and mathematics

  • attendance

  • progress for students with additional learning needs

  • engagement and wellbeing for learning.

Since the previous ERO review, there has been continuity of senior leadership and staff. The board is a mix of both new and experienced trustees.

The school is involved in Ministry of Education mathematics professional development and the Reading Together programme.

The school is part of a local cluster of schools for professional development and learning.

Evaluation Findings

1 Equity and excellence – achievement of valued outcomes for students

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

The school has yet to achieve equity and excellence for all its students.

Achievement data from the end of 2017 shows the majority of all students achieve at expected curriculum levels in reading, writing and mathematics. Less than half of Māori learners achieve at expectations in writing, and less than half of Pacific learners achieve at expectations in all three areas.

There is significant disparity for Māori and Pacific, who achieve below their peers in literacy and mathematics. The achievement of boys is below that of girls in literacy. This is well known by trustees, leaders and teachers and strategies are in place to address this.

Learners with additional needs are appropriately identified, their needs recognised and programmes of support put in place. External expertise supports this provision.

1.2 How well is the school accelerating learning for those Māori and other students who need this?

Those students who are at risk of not achieving at expected curriculum levels are identified, monitored and well known by teachers and leaders.

School achievement data shows success in improving progress for some students. Establishing a clearer picture of who is making accelerated progress and where this is occurring, should support the school to measure its overall effectiveness and inform next steps to improve outcomes for priority learners.

2 School conditions for equity and excellence – processes and practices

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

Trustees, leaders and teachers strongly support children to be confident, connected and actively involved in their learning. Well-developed systems and processes promote their holistic wellbeing and foster a sense of belonging. Teachers promote children’s understanding of dispositions and attitudes, and encourage ownership of their learning.

The recently revised school curriculum document is well considered and comprehensive. It provides explicit expectations for teaching and learning. The Trentham graduate profile identifies the school’s valued outcomes for students.

Leaders recognise and promote te reo me ngā tikanga Māori through strategic planning, a culturally responsive curriculum and staff professional development. Māori students have increasing opportunities to engage in learning experiences and contexts that reflect and affirm their language, culture and identity. External expertise appropriately supports the ongoing integration of te ao Māori across the school.

Students with additional learning needs are well known and supported through a range of appropriate strategies and resources. The board has funded significant numbers of additional teacher aides to support students’ engagement and learning. Support staff receive ongoing training and are highly valued for the support they provide.

Systems and programmes to build teacher capability schoolwide impact positively on their growth and student engagement. A robust appraisal system, aligned to new initiatives and expectations for effective practice, promotes cohesion and consistency. Cluster professional learning and networking opportunities contribute to building deliberate, effective teacher strategies. Positive staff relationships promote a climate of collaboration.

Leaders and teachers prioritise positive relationships with students, parents and whānau. Trustees and leaders are exploring a broad range of community consultation strategies to inform their decision making.

The senior leadership team works collaboratively and effectively to promote positive outcomes for students. Senior leaders demonstrate strong advocacy for the diverse needs of their community. They grow leadership capability through coaching, mentoring and professional learning with middle management.

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

Leaders are aware of the need to use achievement data more effectively. Building teachers’ data literacy and developing shared understanding of acceleration should support more effective scrutiny of achievement data. Continued monitoring, in-depth analysis and reporting of progress and acceleration for all groups of students at risk of not achieving is a next step.

Leaders and staff are reflective, and self review is an established process. Leaders gather a range of information to inform decisions for improvement. Further developing a shared understanding and use of effective internal evaluation is a key next step. This should better support trustees, leaders and teachers to know what has the most significant impact on raising achievement, and what is needed to promote equity and excellence.

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:

  • school leadership that is focused on building consistent teaching and learning practices to promote positive outcomes for students

  • a strategic approach integrating te ao Māori that promotes success for Māori learners

  • a schoolwide culture of collaboration that supports a collective response to the needs of all learners.

Next steps

For sustained improvement and future learner success, priorities for further development are in:

  • strengthening analysis of achievement information to systematically address in-school disparities

  • building schoolwide inquiry and internal evaluation to better determine the effectiveness of programmes and actions on student outcomes.
    [ERO will provide an internal evaluation workshop for trustees and senior leaders]

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Alan Wynyard

Director Review and Improvement Services

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

5 November 2018

About the school

Location

Upper Hutt

Ministry of Education profile number

2099

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll

448

Gender composition

Male 52%, Female 48%

Ethnic composition

Māori 34%

Pākehā 52%

Pacific 8%

Other ethnic groups 6%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

Yes

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

October 2018

Date of this report

5 November 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review December 2015

Education Review December 2012

Education Review November 2009