Cosgrove School

Cosgrove School

Te Ara Huarau | School Profile Report


This Profile Report was written within 24 months of the Education Review Office and Cosgrove School 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.


Cosgrove School is a culturally diverse contributing school catering for students in Years 1 to 6 in Papakura, Auckland. An enrolment zone is in place to manage significant housing development in the area. The values of the school are built on and defined in the Cosgrove Way.

Cosgrove School’s strategic priorities for improving outcomes for learners are:

To provide a safe, supportive, and inclusive environment by developing a culture of positive respectful relationships that:

  • promotes teaching and learning

  • creates an environment in which the Cosgrove Way empowers everyone to succeed

  • enhances pupil’s self-esteem and encourages self-respect and respect for others

  • develops a school culture where children and whānau are active participants in the learning process.

You can find a copy of the school’s strategic and annual plan on Cosgrove School’s website.

ERO and the school are working together to evaluate how effectively the school builds leadership and teacher capability to lift student achievement in literacy.

The rationale for selecting this evaluation is:

  • lifting student achievement to attain equitable and excellent learning outcomes for all students
  • leaders and teachers using culturally responsive practices and contexts that are meaningful and relevant to Cosgrove students.

The school expects to see:

  • consistent schoolwide practice in literacy
  • acceleration of progress and achievement in literacy for all students
  • leaders and teachers using culturally responsive practices and contexts that are meaningful and relevant to Cosgrove learners.


The school can draw from the following strengths to support the school in its goal to build leaders and teachers capability to lift student achievement in literacy.

  • school values are well embedded in the Cosgrove Way
  • wellbeing and hauora are actively promoted and supported by a well-resourced school environment
  • an established plan aligned to improving literacy programmes and lifting student achievement.

Where to next?

Moving forward, the school will prioritise:

  • continuing to implement and embed effective teaching strategies to improve outcomes in literacy 
  • enhancing learner focussed relationships with whanau so they can assist and support children
  • continuing to build teachers capability and capacity to use assessment and moderation to inform literacy teaching practices.

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

9 August 2023 

About the School

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

Cosgrove School

Board Assurance with Regulatory and Legislative Requirements Report 2022 to 2025

As of August 2022, the Cosgrove School Board has attested to the following regulatory and legislative requirements:

Board Administration




Management of Health, Safety and Welfare


Personnel Management






Further Information

For further information please contact Cosgrove School Board.

The next School Board assurance 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

9 August 2023 

About the School

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

Cosgrove School - 17/11/2016

1 Context

Cosgrove School in Papakura is a primary school for children in Years 1 to 6. The majority of the children are Māori with smaller percentages of Pacific and Pākehā children.

Recent property developments include the refurbishment of classrooms. Senior leaders provide professional learning programmes that include advice and guidance for all the first and second-year teachers from the wider Papakura area. The principal and senior leaders are working with managers from the Ministry of Education to manage the impact of housing development in the newly created communities close to the school.

2 Equity and excellence

The vision and valued outcomes defined by the school for all children are to develop a community of motivated learners who respect themselves, each other and their environment. Helping children to 'be their best' is the core school value. In addition, the school's mission is to improve learning outcomes for children by building a 'kind' school through engaging the community to value learning, themselves and others.

The school’s achievement information shows that many children achieve below the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. However, the school's data shows that, by the time children are in Year 6, their average achievement is considerably higher than the average achievement for the school as a whole. For example, in 2015, 77 percent of Year 6 children were achieving at the national standard in reading whereas across the whole school 57 percent of children were at or above the standard. Similarly in mathematics, 59 percent of the Year 6 children were achieving at or above the national standard compared with 49 percent across the whole school. The difference was less marked in writing, with 50 percent of Year 6 children achieving at or above the National Standard compared to 46 percent of the whole school.

Māori and Pacific children achieve similarly to their peers in reading, writing and mathematics. Over the past three years the total percentage of children achieving National Standards in reading is slowly increasing. Last year children's achievement in writing and mathematics lifted significantly across all ethnic groups.

Since the last ERO evaluation in 2013 the school has introduced an initiative to support children to know more about their own learning so that they can set their own learning goals. School leaders and teachers have developed teaching practices that build children's understanding of their own learning and progress. Teachers have also participated in professional learning to improve children's achievement in mathematics. Over this year teachers' professional learning has focused on promoting children's positive behaviour for learning. There are also plans to further develop teaching practices that make learning processes more visible for all children.

3 Accelerating achievement

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

The school is continuing to refine, develop and evaluate effective ways to accelerate the learning of Māori children who are yet to achieve National Standards. Leaders and teachers use a range of targeted approaches to identify and respond positively to those children who are not yet achieving at or above the National Standards. They are also identifying and responding to children who require enrichment and extension and those with special abilities.

Teachers are using increasingly robust systems for collecting, collating, analysing and moderating assessment data. Their analysis of this data, at the end of each term, shows them how well Māori children are progressing towards the charter goals. Senior leaders report to the board specifically about the accelerated progress that Māori children make in relation to National Standards over each year, and over their time at the school.

Targeted professional learning is building teachers' knowledge and use of teaching strategies, and assessment. This knowledge is resulting in more tailored programmes, and interventions to promote Māori children's achievement. Senior leaders and teachers have also developed practices to moderate the assessment of children's achievement and they plan to continue extending these practices. As a result, senior leaders are now more confident about the validity and reliability of the school's data and the extent to which it accurately reflects Māori children's levels of achievement.

Teachers work collaboratively to share information about children's achievement and to make overall teacher judgements (OTJs). In 2015 senior leaders reviewed the assessment tools and practices used for making OTJs. They continue to review these and make modifications where necessary to cater better for the needs of children.

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

The school is becoming increasingly successful in accelerating the progress of all children who are yet to achieve at or above National Standards.

The school has three main strategic goals for 2016. The first is to further develop teacher practice to improve children's learning outcomes within a culturally responsive curriculum. The second is to develop effective and inclusive assessment practices that support all students to become assessment-capable learners and to produce good quality data that inform teaching practice. The third is to create partnerships for learning between children, home and school.

ERO recommends that the board and senior leaders consider the value of appending to their charter the school's existing planning that is explicitly aimed at accelerating the progress of all children who are not achieving at or above the National Standards.

The principal reports regularly to the board about children's progress towards the charter goals. These reports are based on achievement reports from the team leaders of each teaching syndicate. Trustees use this information as the basis for resourcing decisions aimed at improving the learning outcomes for Māori and all other children.

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 targets for equity and excellence?

The school's curriculum and other organisational processes and practices enact the schools' vision, values, goals and priorities for all children. The curriculum has been recently reviewed and is aligned to The New Zealand Curriculum. It offers children a broad variety of relevant contexts and opportunities to engage in learning within the school and in the wider community.

The school's recent focus on helping children to take ownership of their learning is positive. Children are becoming increasingly confident and knowledgeable when talking about their achievement. Teachers plan to extend and further develop this so that children can identify and talk about the strategies they can use to improve their achievement.

Positive and respectful relationships are evident throughout the school. Children's health is well catered for with strong wraparound support for their wellbeing. Many external agencies and support workers use the school site to work with children and their families to manage their health and welfare.

The school has enhanced the range of processes for reporting to parents about how well children are progressing and achieving. The school is exploring how to further develop the learning partnership they have with parents and whānau in order to improve learning outcomes for children. This could include using whānau to help teachers design a bicultural and multi-ethnic curriculum that reinforces the value that the school places on children's language, culture and identity.

The school has comprehensive systems for strengthening the foundation skills that children bring with them when they enter the school. A senior leader has responsibility for coordinating special educational needs, and works with staff and external agencies to identify children at risk of not achieving. The mathematics lead teacher and literacy support teacher closely monitor the progress of individual children over time. The literacy support teacher provides guidance and support to ensure literacy is taught well and in addition facilitates an effective ESOL programme.

Provision for children with special education needs has been reviewed and strengthened. There is now a greater focus on supporting children in the classroom programme. Where withdrawal programmes continue to be used, they now more effectively reinforce and support the children's class learning. The board would benefit from receiving evaluative reports about how well additional learning programmes have impacted on children's engagement, progress and achievement

Children have increasing access to digital technologies. Teachers continue to explore how these technologies can be used to enhance learning across the curriculum. They are also considering ways to provide children with more choice and responsibility for how they learn. Some children are now learning in flexible classroom spaces. Evaluating the impact of these technologies and flexible spaces on children's learning outcomes would help teachers to maximise the potential of these changes.

Senior leaders know staff and children well. They focus on enacting the school's vision and ensuring that relationships are learning focused. The principal is strengthening this by growing staff leadership and teaching practice. In addition, he is promoting home-school partnerships and reporting on the improvement of target students as part of his commitment to promoting positive changes for learners.

5 Going forward

How well placed is the school to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it?

Leaders and teachers:

  • know the children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated
  • respond effectively to the strengths, needs and interests of each child
  • regularly evaluate how well teaching is working for these children
  • act on what they know works well for each child
  • build teacher capability effectively to achieve equitable outcomes for all children
  • are well placed to achieve and sustain equitable and excellent outcomes for all children.

The school is well placed to continue extending its initiatives and strategies to accelerate children's progress and lift their achievement. The senior leaders and board are confident that the next steps that they have identified will support the school's ongoing development towards excellent and more equitable outcomes for all children. These steps include:

  • continuing to embed teacher professional development in order to consolidate the strategies and approaches that are successfully accelerating student learning
  • further developing teachers' capability to undertake in depth inquiry into teaching practice
  • maintaining an ongoing focus on accelerating the progress of those children who are not currently achieving at or above National Standards.

ERO is likely to carry out the next 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 Recommendation

ERO recommends that the board, leaders and teachers sustain the school's recent achievement momentum by continuing to build evaluative capability at all levels to support ongoing initiatives and development. 

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

17 November 2016 

About the school


Papakura, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll


Gender composition

Boys 56% Girls 44%

Ethnic composition




Cook Island Maori











Review team on site

June 2016

Date of this report

17 November 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

June 2013

June 2010

May 2007