Wymondley Road School - 05/08/2020

School Context

Wymondley Road School is a small contributing school in Otara, Auckland. The school has recently celebrated its 60th year anniversary. The roll of nearly 180 students consists predominantly of students of Pacific heritage with a small percentage of Māori students.

The school’s overarching vision is for students to learn and lead with courage. The vision aims to nurture students as leaders who stand tall, are strong in character, confident in identity and who strive for excellence. The school has expectations that learners will reach their full potential and develop values of whakaute (respect), mahi tahi (teamwork), ngākau tapatahi (integrity), hiringa (determination) and manaakitanga (caring).

Since the 2016 ERO review, new trustees, a new senior leadership team and many new teachers have been appointed. The principal worked with the Ministry of Education’s Student Achievement Function practitioner (SAF) to improve school assessment systems and processes. Teachers have participated in professional learning in relation to digital learning and mathematics.

ERO’s 2016 report identified further work was needed in curriculum design, teaching and learning, and governance. These areas still need to be addressed.

The school’s current achievement targets focus on children achieving at expected curriculum levels in reading, writing and 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
  • progress towards the school’s strategic goals
  • outcomes related to engagement and wellbeing.

Wymondley Road School is a member of the Papatoetoe Community of Learning I Kāhui Ako (CoL).

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?

Wymondley Road School is at the developing stage in its effectiveness toward achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for students.

At the time of the review, the school did not have longitudinal data or achievement information to show how well all students or groups of students are progressing and achieving. The data the school provided was not reliable. The school is yet to define accelerated learning or expected rates of progress that would support each student to achieve expected curriculum levels.

Senior leaders are continuing to develop relevant and meaningful assessment practices so teachers can make more reliable judgements on student achievement. They have planned professional learning in mathematics, inquiry learning and digital technologies to raise student learning outcomes.

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

Wymondley Road School is beginning to develop its effectiveness in responding to students who need to make accelerated progress.

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?

The school values are reflected in the school’s inclusive culture. School leaders and teachers are connected and committed to serving the school community. A range of appropriate communication strategies are used to communicate with and engage parents, whānau and community. School leaders and teachers focus on building relational trust and reciprocal learning-centred relationships with parents and whānau. They provide learning opportunities to enable parents and whānau to support their children’s learning at home.

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

School leaders acknowledge further developments in curriculum design and implementation are needed to improve outcomes for students. They recognise that a more challenging and interactive curriculum is required to extend learning opportunities, so students actively engage in critical thinking, creativity and oral language. Some curriculum initiatives are at the beginning stage and a new strategic plan has been developed. School leaders are aware of students’ potential and now need to promote this more fully through student leadership and learning opportunities.

To promote more equitable outcomes for students -

School leaders need to:

  • improve curriculum design and implementation, assessment, evaluation and reporting
  • set more specific and meaningful achievement targets for accelerating progress and achievement
  • develop effective assessment systems and processes to increase the reliability in achievement data
  • develop data literacy capability to support teachers to analyse and use achievement information
  • evaluate the effectiveness of teaching strategies to accelerate progress and achievement
  • continue to build the positive learning relationships with whānau and parents
  • increase opportunities for students to manage their own learning.

Trustees need to:

  • access training to have a shared understanding of their governance role and responsibilities
  • regularly review the school’s policy framework to ensure all legal requirements are met
  • ensure effective employment processes
  • receive evaluative reports to help them scrutinise the effectiveness of the school achieving its valued student outcomes
  • develop internal evaluation processes and understanding to evaluate how effectively the board is fulfilling its stewardship role.

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 Children’s Act 2014.

4 ERO’s Overall Judgement

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO’s overall evaluation judgement of Wymondley Road School’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Needs development.

ERO will maintain an ongoing relationship with the school to build capacity and evaluate progress.

ERO’s Framework: Overall Findings and Judgement Tool derived from School Evaluation Indicators: Effective Practice for Improvement and Learner Success is available on ERO’s website.

5 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

For sustained improvement and future learner success, the school can draw on existing strengths in:

  • community collaboration and partnerships that extend learning opportunities for students

  • caring, collaborative and inclusive learning community that students participate and learn in.

Next steps

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

  • ensuring that students have effective, sufficient and equitable opportunities to learn

  • leaders ensuring effective planning, assessment, coordination and evaluation of the school’s curriculum and teaching practices

  • teachers’ access to relevant expertise to build capability for ongoing teaching improvement and innovation

  • developing the board’s scrutiny of the school’s work to promote valued student outcomes

  • more coherent organisational conditions that promote evaluation, inquiry and knowledge building.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified non-compliance in relation to personnel and self-review.

In order to address this the board must:

  • maintain an ongoing programme of self review in relation to policies, plans and programmes
    [National Administration Guidelines 2(b)]

  • ensure appointments are made with appropriate identification and vetting processes
    [National Administration Guidelines 2(b), Vulnerable Children Act 2014, New Zealand Education Gazette]

  • annually assess the principal against all professional standards for principals.
    [New Zealand Education Gazette: and relevant employment agreement]

Recommendations to other agencies

ERO recommends that the Ministry of Education consider providing support for the school in order to bring about improvements in:

  • curriculum design, implementation and review

  • assessment systems and processes to monitor accelerated progress and achievement

  • school leadership to lead change.

ERO recommends that the New Zealand School Trustees Association consider providing support for the school in order to bring about improvement in trustees’ understanding of their roles and responsibilities.

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services (Northern)

Northern Region - Te Tai Raki

5 August 2020

About the school

The Education Counts website provides further information about the school’s student population, student engagement and student achievement.