East Tamaki School

East Tamaki School

Te Ara Huarau | School Profile Report 


This Profile Report was written within 13 months of the Education Review Office and East Tamaki 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. www.ero.govt.nz


East Tāmaki School is in Ōtara, Auckland and provides education for ākonga in Years 1 to 6. The school vision is Whakohooho ngā ākonga – Inspire learners, Whakamana – Strengthen Mana, Whakaaweawetia ā mua – Influence the Future. 

East Tamaki School’s strategic priorities for improving outcomes for ākonga are:

  • Whanaungatanga – To strengthen our partnership with whānau and iwi
  • Piripono – To provide ākonga with a robust, relevant and authentic local curriculum based on Te Mātaiaho with a particular focus on English, Mathematics and Statistics
  • Manaakitanga – To strengthen student wellbeing.

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

ERO and the school are working together to evaluate how well equitable and excellent outcomes for all ākonga are enhanced through learning-focused partnerships with parents, whānau and community.

The rationale for selecting this evaluation is: 

  • the school has a goal to further develop learning-focused partnerships with parents, whānau, iwi and hapū
  • to enhance whānau engagement for shared understandings of approaches to teaching and learning within a local curriculum
  • to improve community collaboration in order to strengthen ākonga wellbeing, engagement, progress and achievement.

The school expects to see:

  • parents, whānau and the community increasingly engaged and involved in a variety of school activities as respected and valued partners in learning 
  • an increased range of effective communication strategies to communicate and engage with parents, whānau and the community
  • whānau contributing to the improved wellbeing, engagement, progress and achievement of all ākonga through shared understandings of teaching, learning and the local curriculum.


The school can draw from the following strengths to support its goal to evaluate how well equitable and excellent outcomes for all ākonga are enhanced through learning-focused partnerships with parents, whānau and community:

  • the wellbeing of all ākonga is well considered and catered for within an inclusive learning climate
  • leaders prioritise and plan for school improvement by pursuing the school’s vision, goals and targets for equity and excellence
  • excellent organisational structures include systems and processes that effectively evaluate the impact of teaching and learning.

Where to next?

Moving forward, the school will prioritise: 

  • continue to plan opportunities for whānau engagement, with a focus on culturally responsive connections and valued home-school partnerships 
  • further consult with whānau to inform and evaluate effective home-school communication strategies
  • further strengthen school wide assessment processes to increase student achievement with a clear focus on shared high, equitable expectations for ākonga wellbeing, engagement, progress and achievement.

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

East Tamaki School

Board Assurance with Regulatory and Legislative Requirements Report 2022 to 2025

As of July 2022, the East Tamaki 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 East Tamaki 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 

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

East Tamaki School - 19/12/2016

1 Context

East Tamaki School is a contributing school catering for children from Years 1 to 6 in Otara, Auckland. Approximately twenty five percent of children identify as Māori, and seventy two percent of children are of Pacific heritage. Leaders and teachers have been involved in a variety of professional learning programmes and inquiries that support the acceleration of student progress and achievement. The school is widely recognised for its "Garden to Table" programme. Recent property developments include the refurbishment of classrooms. Planned property developments include the refurbishment of a classroom teaching block to create collaborative learning spaces.

2 Equity and excellence

The vision and valued outcomes defined by the school for all children are expressed as" Kia Kotahi Tatou" (Let us come together as one). The school's vision "Partnering with the community so that our children achieve high levels of success in a rich natural environment", aligns strongly with the principles and values of The New Zealand Curriculum (NZC).

The school values are, and include:

  • Te Tangata Pakete (character), being the best I can be
  • Rangatira (citizenship), being somebody others can rely on
  • Whanua o te Rohe (community), relating to others
  • Te Hira o Te Turanga (school expectations).

The vision and values are encouraged, modelled and explored as part of everyday school life. They are very well understood by children, teachers, and the community and provide strong foundations for successful learning. Positive relationships between children, teachers, families and whānau are regarded by the school as essential to learning for all children.

The school’s achievement information shows that in the past three years just over sixty percent of all children achieve 'at' or 'above' the National Standards in reading and writing and almost seventy percent of children achieve 'at' or 'above' the National Standards in mathematics. By the time children leave the school at the end of Year 6 over seventy percent of them achieve 'at' or 'above' the National Standard in reading and mathematics.

The data show that Māori and Pacific children achieve at similar levels. Data does show some gender based differences with the overall achievement of girls exceeding that of boys, particularly in writing. In response to the achievement information, the board, school leaders and teachers continue to focus on deliberate actions to accelerate the progress of all children.

The school's moderation processes rely on robust internal discussions and the sharing of children's achievement results. The 'learning community teams' provide a platform for these discussions which are helping to ensure overall teacher judgements are valid and reliable. Assessment decisions are checked and analysed by senior leaders who maintain a strong line of sight across the progress and achievement of all children. The school also moderates its achievement information with another Auckland school. Professional learning and development for teachers and knowledge gained from the deputy principal's recent tertiary study have given the school further assurance that their moderation processes are robust.

Since the last ERO evaluation the school has:

  • strengthened whānau home and school partnerships for children's' learning
  • strengthened bi-cultural practices in school operations and through the curriculum to provided a stronger sense of te reo and Te Ao Māori at all levels of the school
  • continued to develop and embed practices that value and celebrate everyone's language, culture and identity
  • developed a strategic approach and plans to accelerate the progress of Māori and Pacific learners
  • restructured the school timetable to maximise learning time
  • continued to add breadth and richness to the curriculum.

Teachers' use of data to inform their programmes and promote acceleration has also strengthened. In response to the analysis of their data, school leaders and teachers have set appropriate achievement targets to accelerate the progress and achievement of all children.

3 Accelerating achievement

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

The school continues to respond very well to Māori children whose learning and achievement needs acceleration. Charter targets, strategic goals and the school's Māori Education Plan effectively prioritise and reflect the school's sense of urgency about accelerating children's progress in reading, writing and mathematics. Leaders and teachers have a clear definition and understanding of acceleration. They have developed plans that clearly identify and prioritise the acceleration of children who are at risk of not achieving equitable outcomes.

School achievement information shows that some Māori children have made accelerated progress in reading and mathematics over the past three years. There is also evidence that there has been some accelerated progress for Māori children in writing. However, writing remains a focus to ensure that this upward trend for Māori children's writing continues.

Achievement information is effectively analysed by leaders and teachers to set appropriate achievement targets. Targets are also set to ensure that the progress of Māori children who are already 'at' or 'above' National Standards continues.

The school maintains a strong focus on knowing the learner. Leaders and teachers have in-depth knowledge of children and their whānau. They have clear and coherent systems and procedures to record and respond to children's individual strengths and learning goals. Children benefit from teachers' detailed knowledge of their interests, strengths and learning needs. Relevant information is gathered from parents and whānau, previous teachers, achievement information, and from children themselves.

The school is proactive in ensuring that children's needs in relation to wellbeing are addressed so that their achievement can improve. Where necessary, the school accesses appropriate support strategies for children and their whānau from external agencies.

A strong culture of high expectations is evident. The board, principal, senior leaders, teachers and parents have high expectations of children. Children have high expectations of themselves as learners and understand the levels of achievement necessary for their future career aspirations. There is a clear and focussed line of sight for the progress of all children that encompasses the principal, senior leaders, teachers, children and parents. This is building collective responsibility for accelerating student's progress and lifting achievement.

The school has numerous strategies and interventions in place to accelerate the achievement of target children in reading, writing and mathematics. These initiatives include in-class interventions, and support programmes taught by specialist teachers. Teacher aides are used very effectively to provide additional learning support in classrooms. These strategies contribute to high levels of student engagement. This is further enhanced by teachers, who collaborate well and routinely share strengths and good practice to support all learners.

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

The school continues to respond very well to other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration. The systems, practices and programmes in place for other children are similar to those for Māori children.

The school continues to consult with its Māori and Pacific communities through regular hui, and fono. Leaders and teachers have been responsive to whānau voice and this has resulted in strong learning partnerships with parents and whānau. They use deliberate and well considered strategies to support and resource learning opportunities at home, and to share children's progress and success with families. This is having a very positive impact on children's learning outcomes.

Children's progress and learning is actively celebrated in classrooms, across the school and with parents and whānau. Parents receive very useful information about their child's progress and achievement in relation to National Standards, and about how they can help at home. Parents value the school's high expectations for all learners, open communication with teachers, and programmes designed to accelerate progress and achievement.

Leaders and teachers are open to learning and willing to trial new initiatives to maximise learning time, increase children's engagement and accelerate progress. The school has lengthened the school day with the introduction of 'Start of the Day Activities' (SODA) in all classrooms. The programme focuses on purposeful activities to accelerate progress in reading, writing and mathematics. It gives teachers additional time to work one to one or in small groups with children requiring additional learning assistance.

Leaders and teachers effectively evaluate the impacts of the SODA initiative, along with all other intervention programmes and initiatives aimed at accelerating the progress of children at risk of not achieving. Further embedding these initiatives will help to ensure that the current positive achievement trajectory is maintained. 

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, processes and practices are effective in developing and enacting the school's vision, values, goals and priorities for equity and excellence.

The curriculum reflects The New Zealand Curriculum (NZC) and the school's vision, values and goals. It appropriately prioritises reading, writing and mathematics as the foundations of learning. A rich, broad and authentic curriculum provides learning opportunities to open children's minds to future possibilities and ongoing learning. The curriculum includes numerous special features that are highly valued by children and parents. These include the "Garden to Table" programme, hands on technology programmes and specialist science and music programmes. These special features of the curriculum support and enact the school's commitment to holistically educating the child.

Effective teaching strategies are evident. There are numerous systems and teaching practices that help students to know about themselves as learners and actively contribute to their learning. Teachers provide children with many ways and opportunities to monitor and track their own progress and achievement, and identify their next learning steps. Children benefit from a settled and positive working tone in classrooms and numerous sporting and cultural leadership opportunities. They are confident, friendly and respectful and have a strong sense of belonging at East Tamaki School.

The leadership of the school is highly effective. The principal and senior leaders successfully promote continuous school improvement. Leaders provide clear guidelines and expectations for staff. They promote a working environment that values the strengths, talents, interests and contributions of staff members. The professional capacity of the staff continues to be built through staff collaboration, strategic professional development initiatives and opportunities for teachers to take on leadership roles.

Senior leaders use evaluation very well for ongoing improvement and innovation. A good example of this is the culturally responsive establishment of two vertical learning communities within the school. The leaders of these two communities prioritise children's and teachers' wellbeing and belonging. They are building collective staff responsibility for the learning of all children in their respective learning communities. Teachers meet regularly in their learning communities specifically to discuss and inquire into, and strategize about how to better support the progress of individual children.

The school recognises the positive impact that bi-cultural practices, curriculum content and the integrated use of te reo Māori has on Māori children's sense of belonging. Children and teachers have benefited from professional learning programmes and the introduction of a sequential te reo Māori programme throughout the school.

Leaders and staff continue to consult with the Māori community through regular hui and have been responsive to whānau voice. Children have the opportunity to develop and deliver their mihi, and to participate in kapa haka. Collectively these practices help to affirm and promote Māori students' pride in their language, culture and identity.

The board is representative of the school's community, and trustees have a clear understanding of student progress and achievement. They have a trusting and positive working relationship with the principal. Trustees have the "child at the heart" of their thinking, and a strong commitment to improved learning outcomes for all children. They use achievement information well to make strategic resourcing decisions to improve learner outcomes and accelerate progress.

The board is responsive to the needs of the community and facilitates the active participation of parents in the life of school. A good example of this facilitation, is the high levels of parent involvement in the celebrations of language, culture and identity for all cultural groups who make up the learning community of East Tamaki School.

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.

Children's learning and wellbeing are central to all decision making. Leaders foster a school culture that is caring, affirming and respectful. There are effective systems and processes to ensure teachers know learners' backgrounds, strengths, interests and next learning steps. Transitions into the school, and transitions through year levels are very well managed and responsive to the needs of individual children. There is a strong sense of a collective commitment to raising children's achievement. Processes for identifying and monitoring overall achievement, and that of specific students, are well established.

Board members, senior leaders and teachers collectively build effective learning partnerships with whānau. The concept of "Ako"(two way learning between the school and home) is being actively promoted to provide enhanced learning outcomes for all children.

School leaders have identified relevant priorities and plans for ongoing development that include:

  • continuing to respond to the challenges identified in the school's strategic plans, to raise the achievement of all children in reading, writing and maths
  • continuing to embed the school's extensive strategies and initiatives, to accelerate children’s progress
  • increasing student agency so that children are more involved in the school's strategic decision making
  • further exploring e-learning to enhance the school’s future focussed curriculum and approaches to learning.

East Tamaki School is committed to the achievement of sustained, equitable and excellent outcomes for all children.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in four-to-five 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 school continues its responsive approach to achieving the goals set out in its ongoing plans to accelerate the progress of all children.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

19 December 2016

About the school 

LocationOtara, Auckland
Ministry of Education profile number1264
School typeContributing (Years 1 to 6)
School roll266
Gender compositionGirls 52% Boys 48%
Ethnic composition



Cook Island Māori












Review team on siteAugust 2016
Date of this report19 December 2016
Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

October 2013

October 2010

December 2007

East Tamaki School - 18/10/2013

1 Context

What are the important features of this school that have an impact on student learning?

East Tamaki School in Otara, Auckland, continues to provide good quality education for students from Years 1 to 6. Students are predominantly from Pacific nations. Larger groups of Samoan, Cook Island and Tongan students reflect the local community. Māori students comprise nearly twenty five percent of the roll.

Students and families are proud of the school. Students participate in a diverse range of learning and experiential activities that make up the school’s broad curriculum. A recent noteworthy feature is the school bike track where children enjoy physical activity and learn safe cycling practices.

Recent property upgrades have enhanced the school’s attractive, well maintained environment. Pastoral care networks and positive behaviour programmes are in place to support student wellbeing. A safe learning environment is promoted.

The school continues to have a positive ERO reporting history. Trustees have responded positively to the recommendations noted in the 2010 ERO report. Many notable areas of progress identified in that report have been maintained.

2 Learning

How well does this school use achievement information to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement?

Students actively engage in learning activities. Student engagement is well supported by teachers who have high expectations that students will achieve. Students work in co-operative ways to enhance their learning and to promote their own strengths, particularly in writing.

Classroom environments are neat, orderly and achievement focused. Children’s work is valued and attractively presented. 'Target' walls feature in all classrooms and enable students to identify their achievement levels. Students are becoming increasingly confident to talk about their learning. A recent development has been teachers involving students in goal setting and identifying their next learning steps. This area of building students’ knowledge and understanding of their own progress and achievement continues to develop.

Teachers use effective teaching strategies to make positive changes to cater for diverse learners. School information on student achievement is effectively used to identify trends and patterns over time. Current data indicates that Pacific students achieve at similar levels to Māori students and that they achieve better in reading and writing than they do in mathematics.

School leaders carefully analyse the achievement of groups of Pacific students within the school. This information shows that most groups achieve at similar levels with each other. School leaders could consider comparing this achievement information with national data to see how well Pacific groups achieve overall.

The school has used achievement information well to improve the achievement of students in mathematics. Students in Years 4 to 6 are participating in a pilot project that promotes teaching mathematics using local and culturally relevant contexts for Pacific students and for Māori students. Recent school data indicates that students are making positive academic gains and that some children are making accelerated progress.

In 2012, parent input was actively sought so that helpful changes could be made to improve the way parents received student achievement information. Parents receive clear information in relation to the National Standards and have regular opportunities to discuss their child’s achievement. School leaders acknowledge the benefits for students who are given the opportunity to lead these discussions.

3 Curriculum

How effectively does this school’s curriculum promote and support student learning?

East Tamaki School’s curriculum effectively promotes and supports student learning and engagement. The school curriculum is closely aligned to the principles and key competencies of The New Zealand Curriculum (NZC). It gives students a broad range of learning experiences in which they can enjoy success. Curriculum design priorities include:

  • a strong focus on the core curriculum, including oral language programmes in the junior school
  • using inquiry models that help students learn strategies for taking greater ownership of their learning
  • initiatives that foster students’ emotional and social competence
  • teaching programmes that provide students with authentic and culturally relevant learning contexts.

Students value and appreciate the broad range of learning opportunities. They participate successfully in the performing arts, and in enviro-schools and mentoring programmes. Notable features of curriculum implementation include:

  • a cross-curricular Garden to Table programme that incorporates gardening and cooking
  • specialist music programmes that provide a range of learning opportunities, including performing at national events
  • the fostering of tuakana and teina relationships whereby students teach their home languages in classrooms as part of Māori and Pacific Language weeks
  • the contributions of parent volunteers and members of the wider community.

School leaders acknowledge the importance of continuing to design a curriculum that is culturally inclusive and responsive for Pacific and for Māori learners. Developing shared understandings and expectations as a board, as school leaders, and with parents and teachers of what this means for students will strengthen this initiative.

How effectively does the school promote educational success for Māori, as Māori?

The school has some initiatives in place that positively promote educational success for Māori, as Māori. The upcoming school production is providing Māori students with lead roles to perform and succeed as Māori. Māori students who are cultural leaders appreciate being mentored by local secondary school students in pōwhiri processes.

Students report that they feel valued and safe. They have positive relationships with their teachers and peers. Students are fully engaged in the life of the school and enjoy leadership opportunities.

School self review identifies that developing teacher’s skills and confidence in using te reo and tikanga Māori is a next step. This development is likely to contribute to Māori students’ sense of themselves as capable learners by building on their language, identity and culture.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The board is well placed to sustain and improve school performance. Trustees are mostly new and have participated in some training to support them with their governance role. Student achievement information is used strategically, with board decision making focusing on improving student outcomes and monitoring progress towards achieving goals.

Trustees and the principal maintain a clear alignment from the strategic plan, through the annual plan, to curriculum delivery and programme implementation. Self-review processes are well developed to support school improvement. High quality evaluative reporting and carefully considered next steps inform ongoing strategic planning and decision making.

The school is well placed to meet the academic learning needs of the students. Leaders promote professional learning that focuses on raising student achievement. Teachers actively engage in professional learning discussions. They use evidence from research and their own practice to reflect on and improve their teaching.

School leadership is cohesive and focused on high expectations of staff and students. The experienced principal has established very good processes to distribute leadership capability. She identifies strengths in staff, parents and members of the community and ensures that expertise is used well. This approach values the contributions of others and fosters the skills and talents people bring.

A recent review of the school’s Māori Education Plan and Pacific Education Plan has been completed with external support. The board endeavours to consult widely and seek direction from staff, students, parents, whānau and aiga. The school recognises through its own self review that establishing regular opportunities to meet kanohi ki te kanohi (face-to-face) with whānau and with aiga is likely to further improve these relationships. Working with staff, students, whānau and aiga to enact the school’s Māori Education Plan and the Pacific Education Plan should help ensure these plans are implemented effectively.

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.

When is ERO likely to review the school again?

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

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

18 October 2013

About the School

LocationOtara, Auckland 
Ministry of Education profile number1264 
School typeContributing (Years 1 to 6) 
School roll277 
Gender composition

Boys 56%

Girls 44%

Ethnic composition



Cook Island Māori










Review team on siteAugust 2013 
Date of this report18 October 2013 
Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

October 2010

December 2007

October 2004