Christ the King Catholic School (Owairaka)

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Education institution number:
School type:
Full Primary
School gender:
Not Applicable
Total roll:

288 Richardson Road, Mount Roskill, Auckland

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School Context

Christ The King Catholic School (Owairaka) is a small, inner-city school catering for approximately 102 students from different cultures. Six percent of students identify as Māori and 52 percent have Pacific heritage. Sixty percent of students have English as an additional language.

The school’s mission is to foster excellence and build community within a Catholic environment. The vision is to grow a community of compassionate, confident and connected learners. Stated values are respect, love and service, justice, peace and joy.

At the beginning of 2020 the school employed a new principal, a deputy principal, established a new leadership team and employed new staff. There is also a newly formed board of trustees.

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

  • mid-year and end of year results for target students in reading
  • end of year achievement information in reading, writing and mathematics.

The school is part of the Ako Hiko outreach of the Manaiakalani Trust and is a member of the Auckland Central Catholic Community of Schools | Kāhui Ako.

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 new board and senior leaders are working towards achieving equity and excellence for all students.

Reported school information for 2019 states that overall, most students are achieving at or above curriculum expectations in reading, writing and mathematics.

Māori, Pacific and Asian students achieve similar results in reading and writing. Reading and mathematics achievement data for early 2020 indicate gender parity in mathematics. However, there is wide disparity for Māori students and non-Māori students in mathematics and reading. There is also significant gender disparity in reading.

Leaders and teachers should continue to identify and report to the board on achievement disparity with a focus on increasing equity for all students.

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

The school’s 2019 achievement information indicates that some targeted and priority students are making accelerated progress. However, this information does not clearly identify or report on rates of accelerated student progress for individuals or groups of students. It would be useful for teachers to develop a shared understanding of what acceleration looks like at this school and use this information to continue to monitor individual student 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 has a positive culture sustained by the school’s inclusive environment and the focus on Catholic values and beliefs. Community relationships are strong, and teachers know their students and families very well. Senior leaders are implementing ways to enhance learning-focused partnerships with parents.

Senior leaders and the board are implementing strategies to increase student equity and excellence. These include:

  • the employment of a Special Education Needs Coordinator (SENCO)

  • tracking individual students whose progress needs acceleration to move towards achievement parity

  • reported achievement information that is differentiated by year level, gender and ethnicity

  • targeted teacher professional development.

The senior leadership team is considering further ways to enhance the school’s localised and responsive curriculum. Current learning programmes are related to students’ real-world experiences, their language, culture and identity. Teachers are implementing ways to increase students’ understanding of their progress and next steps for ongoing improvement.

There is an emphasis on enhancing students’ digital fluency in Years 4 to 8 focused on current issues through research and presentation. Students are confident and positively engage in their learning.

The newly established leadership team has complementary skills and a positive vision for ongoing learning and curriculum direction.

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

Senior leaders agree that next steps include:

  • continuing to identify and target students who need to make accelerated progress
  • building teacher capability to use student achievement information
  • implementing teachers’ inquiries into the impact of their teaching practices to accelerate progress and achievement
  • continuing to track and report on the progress of groups of students over time
  • using evidence-based internal evaluation to identify the effectiveness of strategies to promote accelerated progress.

In order to improve stewardship practices, the board should:

  • continue to build trustees’ knowledge and understanding of their stewardship roles and responsibilities through governance training
  • scrutinise achievement information to increase achievement parity
  • implement internal evaluation processes to evaluate the effectiveness of board practices on meeting their strategic goals.

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 Christ The King Catholic School (Owairaka)’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Developing.

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 the:

  • positive school culture that supports students’ wellbeing and learning
  • progressively responsive curriculum that increasingly aligns to students’ individual interests
  • variety of positive strategies being implemented to increase equity and excellence.

Next steps

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

  • collaboratively building coherent organisational systems and processes, including internal evaluation of the impact of strategies on student outcomes
  • building trustees’ understanding of their stewardship roles and responsibilities.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified areas of non-compliance in relation to providing the New Zealand Curriculum (NZC), implementing current employment and personnel legislation, and providing a safe physical and emotional environment.

In order to address these, the board of trustees must:

  • develop and make known to the school’s Māori community; policies, plans, targets for improving the progress and achievement of Māori students
    National Administrative Guidelines 1(e)
  • provide appropriate career education and guidance for all students in Years 7 and above National Administrative Guidelines 1(f)
  • comply in full with any legislation currently in force or that may be developed to ensure the safety of students and employees, especially the Children’s Act 2014
    National Administrative Guidelines 5(c)
  • ensure the documents relating to the use of physical restraint include the names and positions of authorised staff.
    Education Act 1989 (s139AC to s139AE).

Areas for improved compliance practice

To improve current practice, the board of trustees should:

  • ensure all board policies are signed, dated and regularly reviewed
  • update and implement current procedures related to crisis and emergency preparedness and prevention
  • develop and make known to the school’s community a policy on making a complaint
  • ensure the appointment process meets current employment requirements in relation to the Children’s Act 2014.

Recommendations to other agencies

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

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services (Northern)

Northern Region - Te Tai Raki

25 June 2020

About the school

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

1 Context

Christ the King Catholic School (Owairaka) is a state integrated school that caters for children from Years 1 to 6 and also for girls through to Year 8. The school is part of the wider parish family and enjoys close relationships and connections with members of the church. The school roll reflects the ethnically diverse community that the school and the local Catholic parish serve. Four percent of children have Māori heritage and 60 percent are from Pacific nations. A recent significant roll growth of African immigrants with English as a second language adds further diversity.

Since ERO's 2013 review a new principal has been appointed bringing with her a refocus on the needs of the modern learner. There have also been other staff changes, including recent appointments to the senior management team.

2 Equity and excellence

The vision and valued outcomes defined by the school are for all children to grow in a community of compassionate, confident and connected learners valuing Catholic education that is inclusive, responsive and holistic. These outcomes stem from the school's mission of being a school committed to fostering excellence and building community within a Catholic environment.

The school's achievement information shows that two thirds of learners achieve at or above National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. The data shows Māori and some Pacific groups achieve at good levels in these curriculum areas. It also shows that there are some children whose achievement needs to be accelerated.

The arrival of immigrant children with English as a second language in recent years has contributed to some decreases in overall student achievement levels. School data shows that most children who have been in this school throughout their schooling achieve at or above National Standards levels.

Since the 2013 ERO review the school has continued to refine its assessment practices. Targeted professional development has supported teachers to reflect on their practice. Teachers have also been involved in school-wide professional learning about mathematics teaching and how to set and support behavioural conditions for students as learners. This professional development has lifted achievement in mathematics and strengthened student engagement in their learning.

Teachers and leaders know and care for their children and families/whānau. They set up learners to progress and succeed. Appropriate levels of intervention and individual support are provided for each learner.

3 Accelerating achievement

How effectively does this school respond to children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school is improving its response to children whose achievement needs accelerating.

The school has good systems to help identify children who are at risk of not achieving equitable outcomes. Teachers regularly monitor the progress of their target children and reflect on the effectiveness of teaching practices to lift achievement. Leaders and teachers trial different strategies and interventions with their target children to accelerate their progress.

School leaders have identified where they need to re-strategise ways to accelerate progress for identified groups of children within the Pacific cohort and within the newer migrant cohort whose achievement needs to be accelerated. They are refining ways to document children's progress to assist with the evaluation of the effectiveness of these new approaches.

4 School conditions

How effectively do the school’s curriculum and other organisational processes and practices develop and enact the school’s vision, values, goals and priorities for equity and excellence?

The school is increasing its effectiveness to enact its vision, values, goals and priorities for equity and excellence.

Catholic beliefs and values and the diverse languages, cultures and identities of children, staff and the wider community are celebrated in the school's curriculum. Children have opportunities to learn through their culture. Emphasis is placed on acquiring the English language, literacy and mathematics. The school is looking at ways the curriculum can support deeper learning behaviours.

Leaders and teachers are beginning to focus on strengthening student ownership of their learning. They are looking at ways to further deepen children's engagement with learning through extending and challenging learning opportunities. The use of digital devices is being developed as a key tool to support student engagement in Years four to eight.

The board of trustees have consulted with the school community and completed an extensive school charter review. This work has helped them set the school's strategic direction. Trustees fully support the leadership and the new direction of the school. They are proactive in accessing external advice to be confident in their governance role.

Leaders and teachers are developing a school culture of collaboration, where they work alongside each other focusing on meeting the needs of all students. The school identifies and draws on community resources and expertise to increase teacher capacity to improve student achievement and wellbeing.

Children with special needs participate in learning opportunities that provide appropriate challenge and support. Assessment activities are inclusive, authentic and fit for purpose, providing relevant and meaningful evidence to assess children's achievement and progress and to identify next steps.

The new leadership team is developing a coherent performance management process to build teachers' practice. Alignment is evident between children's learning needs, teacher professional learning goals, and processes for teacher appraisal. The school culture is conducive to reflective practice by teachers. A strategic approach is being implemented to grow professional capability and collective capacity across the school.

Leaders and teachers are implementing new teaching practices as they move together through this time of change. They are developing systems and processes to promote inquiry, knowledge building and evaluation. Leaders and teachers gather and analyse information to prioritise and to make decisions about appropriate school goals and targets. They use external expertise and networks to grow their evaluation and inquiry.

5 Going forward

How well placed is the school to achieve and sustain equitable and excellent outcomes for all children?

Leaders and teachers: 

  • know the children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated
  • respond to the strengths, needs and interests of each child
  • regularly evaluate how teaching is working for these children
  • do not always or systematically act on what they know works for each child
  • have a plan in place but have not yet built teacher capability effectively to achieve equitable outcomes for all children. 

Christ the King Catholic School is refocusing on the needs of the modern learner. The focus is on the individual child and an emphasis on adults knowing the learner well. It is a time of change for students, teachers, leaders and trustees.

ERO and school leaders agree the following priorities for ongoing school improvement include: 

  • making decisions and being explicit about the cornerstones for the refocused curriculum
  • continuing to clarify and promote consistently effective teaching practice that supports the school's new direction
  • refining ways to use achievement information at management and board level to support decision making and to monitor the effect of initiatives on children's progress and achievement
  • building on parent engagement by strengthening the learning partnership. 

Action: The board, principal and teachers should use the findings of this evaluation, the Effective School Evaluation resource, the Internal Evaluation: Good Practice exemplars and the School Evaluation Indicators to develop a Raising Achievement Plan to further develop processes and practices that respond effectively to the strengths and needs of children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated.

As part of this review ERO will continue to monitor the school’s Raising Achievement plan and the progress the school makes.

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

6 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 the following:

  • board administration

  • curriculum

  • management of health, safety and welfare

  • personnel management

  • 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

  • processes for appointing staff

  • stand down, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions

  • attendance

  • compliance with the provisions of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014.

7 Recommendations

ERO recommends that the school continues to develop and embed practices and systems to promote effective teaching and assessment school-wide that support equity and excellence in outcomes for children. 

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

29 June 2016

About the school


Mt Roskill, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll


Gender composition

Boys 51% Girls 49%

Ethnic composition







Cook Island Māori




Sri Lankan












Review team on site

March 2016

Date of this report

29 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

April 2013

June 2010

June 2007