Te Kura o Otangarei

Education institution number:
1069
School type:
Full Primary
School gender:
Co-Educational
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
79
Telephone:
Address:

William Jones Drive, Otangarei, Whangarei

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Te Kura o Otangarei

Te Ara Huarau | School Profile Report

Background

This Profile Report was written within 15 months of the Education Review Office and Te Kura o Otangarei working in Te Ara Huarau, an improvement evaluation approach used in most English Medium State and State Integrated Schools. For more information about Te Ara Huarau see ERO’s website. www.ero.govt.nz

Context 

Te Kura o Otangarei is in Whāngarei, and provides education for ākonga in Years 1 to 8.  The school’s vision is to encourage and foster Taha Wairua, Taha Hinengaro, Taha Tinana and Taha Whānau in ourselves and others around us. The school has Rumaki Reo Māori for ākonga in Years 4 – 8. A new Principal was appointed in 2023.

Te Kura o Otangarei’s strategic priorities for improving outcomes for learners are:

  • Taha Wairua – Environment
  • Taha Hinengaro – Teacher Pedagogy
  • Taha Tinana – Health and Wellbeing
  • Taha Whānau – Culture and Heritage

You can find a copy of the school’s strategic and annual plan on Te Kura o Otangarei’s website.

ERO and the school are working together to evaluate how well the engagement, progress and achievement of all ākonga is improved through health and wellbeing initiatives and approaches to learning. Strengthening home-school learning partnerships and improving rates of ākonga attendance are ongoing priorities to further support progress and achievement.

The rationale for selecting this evaluation is: 

  • the school’s goal of Taha Tinana Health and Wellbeing has ākonga at the centre, experiencing a safe environment where their needs are met and they are engaged, progressing and achieving
  • to understand how health and wellbeing initiatives are supporting growth in student wellbeing, self-care and care for others
  • the continued focus on building partnerships with ākonga, whānau and community to support progress in learning.

The school expects to see: 

  • ākonga experiencing a safe learning environment where their health and wellbeing needs are met, and they are engaged, progressing and achieving
  • the evaluation of health and wellbeing initiatives and programmes to inform teaching and learning approaches
  • strengthened learning-focused connections, communication and relationships with parents and whānau
  • the kura, tamariki, whānau and hāpori embracing and promoting our kura vision “Tū Pono, Tū Tika, Tū Aroha, Tū Rangatira”.

Strengths 

The school can draw from the following strengths to support its goal to evaluate how well the engagement, progress and achievement of all ākonga is improved through health and wellbeing initiatives and approaches to learning:

  • collaborative leadership for learning that is open to change and focused on improvement
  • ākonga are consistently well supported to achieve success with a strong sense of their cultural identity
  • Te ao Māori and Te Kura Tapa Wha strategic goals support the conditions and practices that encourage and foster ākonga health and wellbeing.

Where to next?

Moving forward, the school will prioritise:

  • leaders, teachers, parents and whānau sharing high, clear and equitable expectations for ākonga wellbeing, engagement, progress and achievement
  • gathering, analysis and use of ākonga learning outcomes as evidence to further inform the refreshed school vision, values, goals and targets.

ERO’s role will be to support the school in its evaluation for improvement cycle to improve outcomes for all learners. ERO will support the school in reporting their progress to the community. The next public report on ERO’s website will be a Te Ara Huarau | School Evaluation Report and is due within three years.

Shelley Booysen
Director of Schools

7 May 2024 

About the School

The Education Counts website provides further information about the school’s student population, student engagement and student achievement.  educationcounts.govt.nz/home

Te Kura o Otangarei

Board Assurance with Regulatory and Legislative Requirements Report 2022 to 2025

As of November 2022, the Te Kura o Otangarei Board has attested to the following regulatory and legislative requirements:

Board Administration

Yes

Curriculum

Yes

Management of Health, Safety and Welfare

Yes

Personnel Management

Yes

Finance

Yes

Assets

Yes

Further Information

For further information please contact Te Kura o Otangarei School Board.

The that it is meeting regulatory and legislative requirements will be reported, along with the Te Ara Huarau | School Evaluation Report, within three years.

Information on ERO’s role and process in this review can be found on the Education Review Office website.

Shelley Booysen
Director of Schools

7 May 2024 

About the School 

The Education Counts website provides further information about the school’s student population, student engagement and student achievement. educationcounts.govt.nz/home

Te Kura o Otangarei - 23/11/2017

Findings

The principal, board and staff continue to raise the expectations for effective teaching, accelerating student progress, and providing positive outcomes for children and whānau.

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

1 Background and Context

What is the background and context for this school’s review?

Te Kura o Otangarei is located in Tikipunga Whangarei. The school caters for students from Years 1 to 8. The school has two full immersion classes and four mainstream classes. The roll currently stands at 100 students, all of whom are Māori with mainly northern tribal links.

The 2015 ERO report identified a number of areas for further improvement. ERO also recommended the Ministry of Education provide appropriate advisory support for the school. This included support for Māori immersion classes to improve teaching practice and raise student achievement.

ERO has returned to the school regularly over the last two years to evaluate how the board and the school have progressed.

2 Review and Development

How effectively is the school addressing its priorities for review and development?

Priorities identified for review and development
  • behaviour management processes across the school
  • effective teaching practices
  • accelerating student achievement
  • improving internal evaluation
  • any other matters that arise
Progress
Behaviour management processes across the school

The school has implemented some good processes that have helped to establish a settled learning environment. These include individual mentoring programmes for children from Years 3 to 8. This initiative aims to enhance children's self-esteem, resilience, and social competencies. The Positive Behaviour 4 Learning (PB4L) strategies are now well embedded. Students are taking more responsibility for their own learning and behaviour. Students in Years 7 and 8 have leadership roles in the school and the tuakana teina principles are operating well across the school.

The principal’s leadership has been the driving factor in establishing a positive school tone. He models the values and effective approaches to managing student behavioural issues. This modelling includes using restorative strategies, manaaki, whakamana, and empowering students and their whānau. Staff are now consistently embedding these values and practices across the school.

Effective teaching practices

The school has successfully managed staffing changes. Effective teaching practices are now consistent across the school. The principal continues to lead and build a professional culture. There are good systems in place to support staff’s professional practice.

Appropriate professional development, and performance management systems help teachers grow and reflect critically on their practice. Fortnightly staff meetings prioritise conversations about teaching practice to accelerate students' learning.

There is a culture of collaboration and relational trust. Teachers share ideas and effective teaching practices with one another. The curriculum is being broadened through a number of initiatives, which include:

  • play-based learning opportunities for new entrant children
  • growth mind set strategies for older children
  • increased access to digital technologies to enhance learning.

Key next steps

A next step for the school is to grow teachers' leadership capabilities so they can contribute to school improvements to lift children’s achievement.

ERO affirms the principal’s vision of continuing to broaden the curriculum through increasing te reo Māori across the school, and introducing a Māori history curriculum. These strategies have the potential to promote children’s language, culture and identity.

Accelerating students who are underachieving

There are good systems for monitoring student achievement in both the English and Māori medium classes. School achievement data from 2015 show that students in some year levels have made good progress. This is especially so for students in Years 2 to 5. In 2017, some students in the senior classes are showing accelerated progress due to more effective teaching strategies.

Achievement levels for students In Te Puāwaitanga, Ngā Whanaketanga have lifted, particularly in 2016. The school is determined to ensure that students' achievement progress continues to increase as stable staffing helps to consolidate effective teaching practices and learning.

The school has a holistic approach to addressing the school's high levels of transience. Teachers take time to settle new students to prepare them for learning. They keep the focus on each individual child's progress. The school values of manaakitanga, whanaungatanga and whakamana (caring, relationships and empowering) are helping to settle, engage, and connect students, teachers and whānau.

Professional development has supported teachers to develop systems that can provide the school with dependable assessment judgements on student achievement. A next step is to develop external moderation processes with other schools.

The principal provides the board and teaching staff with well analysed achievement data and recommendations to promote accelerated learning. Data are used well to identify students who require accelerated learning, to inform curriculum initiatives, and support teaching as inquiry practices.

Key next steps

A next step for Te Puāwaitanga is to strengthen the collaboration between senior leaders and facilitators. This would help to support teaching strategies in immersion teaching, and raise children’s achievement and promote positive learning outcomes.

3 Sustainable performance and self review

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

Improving internal evaluation

The school uses internal evaluation processes to critically reflect on student achievement, school initiatives and student wellbeing. The board receives good information about the school from the principal. Trustees attend training workshops, and are continuing to grow their governance capabilities. The board, school leaders and teachers should continue to develop their internal evaluation processes to ensure that positive outcomes are being achieved for all children.

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.

4 Recommendations

Recommendations, including any to other agencies for ongoing or additional support.

The ongoing challenge for the school is to raise students' achievement in relation to the National Standards and Ngā Whanaketanga. ERO recommends that school leaders and teachers continue to work together and with whānau to strengthen learning partnerships that focus on children’s learning.

The school agrees that more targeted planning should be developed to accelerate students' progress. This planning should include practices for responding more effectively to the strengths and needs of children whose learning needs to be accelerated. ERO will monitor and discuss these plans and the outcomes with the board.

Conclusion

The principal, board and staff continue to raise the expectations for effective teaching, accelerating student progress, and providing positive outcomes for children and whānau.

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

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

23 November 2017

About the School

LocationTikipunga, Whangarei
Ministry of Education profile number1069
School typeFull Primary (Years 1 to 8)
School roll100
Number of international students0
Gender compositionGirls 39 Boys 61
Ethnic compositionMāori
Pacific
African
95
3
2
Special FeaturesFull immersion classes
Review team on siteAugust 2017
Date of this report23 November 2017
Most recent ERO report(s)Education Review 
Education Review 
Education Review
October 2015
February 2013
May 2009

Te Kura o Otangarei - 05/10/2015

Findings

Te Kura o Otangarei is working well with external support and is making some good progress to improve outcomes for students. The school now needs to promote effective teaching and behaviour management practices consistently throughout the school. ERO will continue to support and evaluate the school’s progress.

ERO intends to carry out another review over the course of one-to-two years.

1 Background and Context

What is the background and context for this school’s review?

Te Kura o Otangarei is located in the northern part of Whangarei city. The school caters for students from Years 1 to 8. One feature of the school is that students have an option of learning in an immersion, bilingual or mainstream programme. All students are Māori and are mainly of Ngāti Hine, Ngāti Wai, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Whātua and other northern hapu and iwi descent.

At the time of ERO’s February 2013 report the principal had been appointed for only two terms. He had identified as a priority the need for the school to develop a behaviour management strategy to increase students' engagement in learning, and to improve their progress, achievement and success.

The 2013 ERO report recognised that many staff and board members had given long service to the school and were dedicated to improving learning for students. However it identified many areas for improvement including teaching and assessment practices, implementing the National Standards, and developing self review across all areas of school operations.

As a result of these 2013 review findings, ERO made the decision to return to the school over a 1 to 2 year period. Since this time, ERO has returned to the school on six separate occasions during 2013, 2014 and 2015 to evaluate the progress the school has made to address concerns.

Since ERO’s 2013 report staffing has remained consistent, except for the te reo Māori immersion unit where two new teachers began in 2013. Since term 4, 2014 the school has received support from a Ministry of Education (MoE) student achievement function (SAF) adviser who has worked with teachers mostly in the mainstream area of the school. Also during the past two years, trustees have been involved in professional development to improve their understanding of their governance roles and responsibilities. 

2 Review and Development

How effectively is the school addressing its priorities for review and development?

The school is building its capacity to address the priorities identified for review and development.

Priorities identified for review and development

  • Embedding effective teaching and learning practices
  • Developing and embedding self review across all school operations
  • Improving school-wide communication processes

Progress

Embedding effective teaching and learning practices

Teachers, particularly in the mainstream area of the school have benefited from the considerable support provided by the SAF adviser. These teachers are improving how they use student achievement information to inform teaching and learning programmes, and are improving their focus on target learners. They are also using more effective teaching practices and are improving their understanding of the National Standards. Over the past 18 months mainstream student achievement has improved in reading, writing and mathematics.

These improvements are the result of a more systematic approach to teachers’ professional learning that includes them:

  • engaging in regular discussion about and inquiring into their professional practice, including how they might respond to students’ individual learning needs
  • working together to moderate student achievement against the National Standards
  • developing a school-wide planning format.

Students in the digital technologies pilot class are engaging positively in their learning. This result is a positive sign for considering a whole-school digital approach to engaging students in learning, especially in writing. The school is now exploring how it might use digital technologies to further engage the community and support children’s learning.

Key next steps

School leaders are implementing accountability systems alongside school’s teacher appraisal process. These systems include purposeful and regular observations of teaching practice. Senior leaders now need to increase expectations for improved teaching practice and ensure that there is school-wide consistency in the use of effective teaching practices.

The school has worked with the Positive Behaviour for Learning (PB4L) strategy for the last few years. There are some examples where teachers are using this framework well and where students are beginning to respond to these strategies. Unfortunately there are examples of teaching where positive behaviour management strategies are not used and children’s wellbeing is at risk. An essential next step is to ensure that all teachers are implementing the PB4L strategies. This expectation would ensure a consistently managed and safer learning environment for students throughout the school.

It remains a concern that a high number of students in the immersion unit are underachieving in pāngarau, tuhituhi and panui. These immersion classes still require specific external support to develop effective teaching and assessment practices.

To embed teaching and learning practices throughout the school, senior leaders also need to continue supporting all teachers throughout the school to:

  • further improve how they use achievement information to identify, support and monitor the progress of students, and accelerate the progress of students who are not yet achieving at the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics
  • enhance learning opportunities, and improve progress and achievement, particularly for Year 7 and 8 students to assist their transition to secondary school.

Improving school-wide communication processes

The principal and senior leaders have made good progress in this area that includes:

  • improving communication systems across the school and making clear the expectations for the senior team and staff
  • developing a leadership and management action plan for the principal
  • improving the alignment between strategic and annual planning, and principal’s action plan for school improvement.

Key next steps

The principal and senior leaders recognise the need to continue providing visible school leadership, clear delegations of responsibilities and for review and reporting.

In addition school leaders have critical leadership roles in:

  • ensuring that all teachers engage consistently in professional learning groups
  • planning strategically for effective school-wide teaching and learning in technology and e-learning
  • reporting more regularly to the board of trustees about school-wide student progress and achievement to inform strategic planning, resourcing and decision-making
  • monitoring and evaluating the impact of teachers’ practice on student progress and achievement.

3 Sustainable performance and self review

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

The school has improved its ability to sustain, improve and review its performance. However, it is still not sufficiently well placed in this key area of sustainable performance.

Findings

Embedding self review across all school operations

With MOE support, the school has developed a good framework for self review, focused on promoting staff input and positive outcomes for students. Key next steps to further improve school wide self review include:

  • continuing to build staff understanding and use of self review, including increasing expectations for written reports to be evaluative, rather than descriptive
  • the board developing its own self review framework to evaluate trustees’ effectiveness in their governance roles.

It is also timely now for the board of trustees to consult with the school’s community to review their philosophy and policy for bilingual and immersion learning. This consultation and review would support the board in ensuring that the immersion and bilingual units are appropriately resourced. It would also help to ensure that teachers receive appropriate professional development to support students’ specific language needs and acquisition.

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.

In order to meet its obligations the board must:

  • provide a safe physical and emotional environment for students.

[National Administration Guidelines]

4 Recommendations

Recommendations, including any to other agencies for ongoing or additional support.

ERO recommends that the Ministry of Education provide appropriate advisory support for the Maori immersion unit to improve teaching practices and raise student achievement.

Conclusion

Te Kura o Otangarei is working well with external support and is making some good progress to improve outcomes for students. The school now needs to promote effective teaching and behaviour management practices consistently throughout the school. ERO will continue to support and evaluate the school’s progress.

ERO intends to carry out another review over the course of one-to-two years. 

Graham Randell
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

5 October 2015

About the School 

LocationOtangarei, Whangarei
Ministry of Education profile number1069
School typeFull Primary (Years 1 to 8)
School roll100
Gender compositionGirls       51 
Boys      49
Ethnic compositionMāori
Pākehā
Cook Island Māori
Australian
African
92
  2
  2
  2
  2
Special FeaturesImmersion classes
Review team on siteJuly 2015
Date of this report5 October 2015
Most recent ERO report(s)Education Review
Education Review
Education Review
February 2013
May 2010
March 2009