New Approach for School Evaluations: Slide Pack Presentation

Equity and Excellence Remain a Major System Issue

Three images of publications by the Minstry of Education and Unicef

First publication cover image from the Ministry of Education is for PISA2018 Global Competence of New Zealand 15-year-olds.

Second publication cover image from Unicef is titled "An Unfair Start: Inequality in children's education in rich countries"

Third publication cover image from Unicef is titled "Child well-being in rich countries: A comparative overview.


What has informed this new approach?

Multiple sources of information and feedback over time:

  • Tomorrow’s Schools Taskforce findings
  • Post-review questionnaires
  • Facilitated meetings with principals
  • Discussions with national groups
  • External Reference Group
  • Feedback and insights from ERO staff
  • Information and research from other jurisdictions


Building on feedback about what's worked well

  • Onsite kōrero informed by evidence
  • Kōrero acting as a catalyst for change and improvement
  • Our particular skillset - the “evaluation lens”
  • Seeing things from an external perspective
  • Unique system position sharing good practice


Schools identified how our approach could be improved 

  • “Schools are complex. Respond to our individual context”
  • “Periodic school reviews have limitations. Align your school evaluation with our improvement cycles”
  • “Give us more opportunity to participate and collaborate in our evaluation”
  • “Support us to translate evaluation into action”
  • “Share best practice and insights from your work across the sector”
  • “Focus with us on what makes the biggest difference to learner outcomes”


Principles and Values

What will be different?

What will be the same?


The Treaty of Waitangi

Protection, Partnership, Participation.

Building an evaluation approach grounded in:

  • Whanaungatanga
    Supporting each other to grow and learn
  • Mahi Tahi
    Doing the best for each other
  • Poutokomanawa
    High-quality trusted evaluation for improvement


Principles of the new approach - the difference

ERO aims to prioritise the things that matter most through an improvement -orientated approach that is:

  • Collaborative
  • Tailored
  • Informed by Evidence
  • Focused
  • Responsive


What will remain the same?

ERO's role in evaluating sector performance for accountability, educational improvement, and knowledge generation

Our commitment to our whakataukī “Ko te tamaiti te pūtake o te kaupapa The Child at the heart of the matter”

Our combined focus on equity and excellence – particularly for Māori, Pacific and students who need additional support


Working together with schools and others focusing on:

Mahi Tahi: Doing the Best for Each Other

  • Equitable and excellent educational outcomes for all
  • High-quality teaching and learning
  • Strong community and whānau partnerships
  • Inclusive cultures of high expectations
  • Highly effective leadership and governance
  • A culture of continuous improvement


What Will the Approach Look Like?


  • Work in progress
  • Evaluate as we go along
  • English medium and state sector only


A partnership approach for evaluation and improvement

  • A review officer working with you
  • Forming an ongoing evaluation relationship
  • Developing a bespoke and differentiated evaluation for your context
  • Identifying what resources might assist your school’s improvement journey


Starting with what matters most for your school

  • Valued student outcomes
  • Local curriculum aligned to New Zealand Curriculum
  • Opportunities to learn


A circular diagram representing the evaluation indicators framework with the Learners at the centre.

This diagram represents the evaluation indicators framework with the indicator domains as a series of circles within a larger circle. At the centre are learners. Closest to learners are the two key conditions for learning: Responsive curriculum, effective teaching and opportunity to learn; and, Educationally powerful connections and relationships. Moving outward, the next circle shows the Māori concepts for culturally responsive schooling: manaakitanga, whanaungatanga, ako and mahi tahi. The next circle shows the school organisational conditions: Stewardship, Leadership and Professional capability and collective capacity. The final, outer circle encompasses the rest and shows the domain of Evaluation, inquiry and knowledge building for improvement and innovation. The diagram suggests interaction and connection between and across the domains to support learners.

Figure 1: The four key levers for education improvement

A circle split into 4 quarters with arrows showing movement in a circle.

Text in the middle is Focus on valued outcomes for diverse (all) learners.

Circle quarter at top left reads Implementation of high-impact pedagogy for valued outcomes for diverse (all) learners.

Circle quarter at top right reads Activation of educationally powerful connections.

Circle quarter bottom right reads Leadership of conditions for continuous improvement.

Circle quarter bottom left reads Productive inquiry and knowledge-building for professional and policy learning.


The diagram shows the learner- focused processes that are part of an ongoing evaluation cycle.

The processes form an outer circle, linked at each stage to each other and to learners at the centre. The cycle of processes starts with Noticing. It moves next to Investigating. This is followed by Collaborative sense making. From there to Prioritising to take action. The cycle concludes with Monitoring and evaluating impact. From there the cycle repeats. The central theme is stated as We can do better.


Embedding evaluation in your school's quality improvement cycle

Whanaungatanga - Supporting Each Other to Grow and Learn

  • An Evaluation Process Linking to School’s Strategic Planning Priorities
  • Focused on Continuous Improvement With Evaluations That Reflect Your Ongoing Work for Improvement
  • Solution Oriented Providing Ongoing Evaluative Feedback, Building Internal Evaluation Capacity
  • Joined up Coherently With External Partners


How we will work together

Whanaungatanga - Supporting Each Other to Grow and Learn

  • Initial engaging
  • Exploring and deciding
  • Differentiating and designing
  • Evaluating for improvement
  • Planning and reporting


What Happens Next? From Engagement to Action

Kei Hea Inaianei? Where to From Here? - Nationally

Whanaungatanga - Supporting Each Other to Grow and Learn

  • Sharing the development with principals
  • Developing the approach in 75 schools across the country
  • Including schools of varying sizes and types
  • Gathering real-time feedback from schools and our evaluators


National planned timeframe

ERO is developing an approach iteratively:

  • Group 1 - We are now meeting with schools taking part in the research and development of the approach
  • Group 2 –Beginning Term 1, 2021, ERO will make adaptations to the approach and begin the next round of implementation


What we want to achieve - better outcomes for our tamariki and our future

  • Building trust across the system
  • Being future oriented
  • Strengthening evaluative capability in the system
  • Working more collaboratively and in a joined-up approach


This will allow us to learn as we go and get real-time feedback from you and from our evaluators. The detail will be key - we need our collective insights to get this right.

We Will Continue Our Korero

Take care of our children.

Take care of what they hear,

Take care of what they see,

Take care of what they feel.

For how the children grow,

So will be the shape of Aotearoa.

 - Dame Whina Cooper