Paerata School

We maintain a regular review programme to evaluate and report on the education and care of young people in schools.

We are in the process of shifting from event-based external reviews to supporting each school in a process of continuous improvement.

There may be delays between reviews for some schools and kura due to Covid-19 and while we transition to our new way of reviewing.

Read more about our new processes and why we changed the way we review schools and kura.

Find out which schools have upcoming reviews.

School Context

Paerata School is located in a rural area approximately 4 kilometres north of Pukekohe. It provides education for students in Years 1 to 8 who come from local and surrounding areas. The current school roll of 138 includes 86 Māori and 24 Tongan students. In 2017, approximately half of the students were new to the school, enrolling throughout the year.

The school’s vision is to ‘support and prepare every child to be confident lifelong learners who will reach their full potential.’ The Paerata Learner profile documents the intent to recognise diversity and promote the values of responsibility, honesty, perseverance, respect and excellence.

The school charter documents the intent that ‘all students will make progress towards reaching the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics’.  

Since the previous ERO review in 2014 the chairperson has continued in the position. A new principal began at the beginning 2015 and there have been some changes to other staff.

Leaders and teachers report school-wide information to the board about outcomes for students in the following areas:

  • achievement in reading, writing, mathematics.

The school is a member of the Pukekohe Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako. 

Evaluation Findings

1 Equity and excellence – valued outcomes for students

1.1 How well is the school achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for all its students?

The school is yet to achieve equitable and excellent outcomes for all students.

School achievement data shows the following picture of achievement and disparity:

  • Overall slightly over half of all students achieved at and above curriculum expectations in reading, writing and mathematics.
  • Boys are achieving at a significantly lower level than girls in reading and writing and a similar level in mathematics. Overall disparity between girls and boys is increasing in reading and writing.
  • Māori and Pacific students achieve at similar levels in writing. Pacific students are out performing Māori in reading and achieving at significantly lower levels in mathematics. Overall disparity between Māori and Pacific students is increasing in reading and mathematics. 

1.2 How effectively does this school respond to those Māori and other students whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school needs to strengthen its response to Māori, Pacific and other students whose learning and achievement need acceleration. Achievement data comparing 2016 and 2017 shows that overall there was a slight increase in the proportion of students achieving expected levels in reading, a slight fall in writing and some useful gains in mathematics.

Priority must now be placed on accelerating the progress of those students achieving below expected levels to address the picture of disparity in the school.

2 School conditions for equity and excellence

2.1 What school processes and practices are effective in enabling achievement of equity and excellence?

The school’s curriculum is future focused and culturally responsive. Māori, Tongan and students from different cultures have a strong sense of their identity and belonging. Cultural activities are woven into the curriculum. Teachers value the diverse cultures of their students’ families and communities. Students learn in group-based activities and have many opportunities to develop confidence, express their ideas and share their learning.

Māori students’ confidence, identity and belonging are valued and celebrated. The ‘Cultural Diversity and Māori Dimension’ section of the charter provides useful direction and expectations for te reo and tikanga Māori. These include consultation with iwi and whānau, local iwi history, whakapapa, pōwhiri, kapahaka and waiata. A kaumatua and whānau provide weekly differentiated tuition for all students and teachers.

The school is forming positive partnerships with parents and the wider community. This is underpinned by a comprehensive whānau engagement plan. Parents, whānau and fono are well-informed about their children’s overall wellbeing and achievement through ongoing conferences, written reports and informal contact. Useful initiatives are in place to support parents to assist with learning in the home. Good use is made of community and parent expertise to increase learning opportunities for students.

Leadership for learning is well informed. Leaders have accessed appropriate professional development for teachers to improve their practice, focusing on raising achievement for at-risk students. Leaders have developed clear expectations for teacher practice and implement a useful performance management system.

Students with additional learning needs have access to a wide variety of support programmes and initiatives. External agencies are accessed appropriately to provide specialist support where necessary. These students are well supported and benefit from a wrap-around approach to their learning and wellbeing.

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

In order to address disparity leaders, trustees and teachers should give priority to strengthening the use of student achievement information including:

  • setting specific inclusive charter targets for identified groups of students whose learning requires acceleration
  • the ongoing reporting to trustees about how well the school is accelerating progress for these targeted students
  • the alignment of leaders’ and trustees’ planning and decision making with a focus on accelerating progress for at-risk students
  • increasing students’ knowledge of their progress and next learning steps

There is the need to strengthen internal evaluation capability across the school. This is necessary to better enable trustees, leaders and teachers to evaluate the effectiveness of programmes and initiative that are focused on accelerating achievement for at risk student.

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 Vulnerable Children Act 2014.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

For sustained improvement and future learner success, the school can draw on existing strengths in:

  • community and whānau engagement that enhances the curriculum and underpins learning partnerships for learning
  • leadership practices that focus on building teacher capability
  • a curriculum that prioritises Māori and Pacific culture and heritage.

Next steps

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

  • strengthening the use of student achievement information to provide an aligned and focused approach to accelerating achievement and reducing in-school disparity
  • internal evaluation processes and practices.

[ERO will provide an internal evaluation workshop for trustees and senior leaders.]

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Lynda Pura-Watson
Deputy Chief Review Officer

Te Tai Miringa - Waikato / Bay of Plenty Region

5 February 2018

About the school 

Location

Pukekohe

Ministry of Education profile number

1414

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

138

Gender composition

Girls                      55%
Boys                     45%

Ethnic composition

Māori                   62%          
Tongan                17%
Pākehā                 10%
Other Pacific         5%
Other                      6%

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

November 2017

Date of this report

5 February 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review September 2014
Education Review July 2011
Education Review July 2008

Findings

Paerata School is well led and managed. Consultation and self review result in ongoing school improvement. An emphasis on targeting students’ specific learning needs is resulting in more responsive learning programmes. Community support contributes to positive outcomes for students. Tikanga and te reo Māori benefit all learners, particularly tamariki Māori.

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

1 Context

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

Paerata School is a Year 1 to 8 rural primary school close to the south Auckland township of Pukekohe. The school has been central to the local community for many years and some current parents and trustees were past pupils. The school roll is likely to grow in coming years as a result of changes in local land use regulations.

Students and their families are well known, and their progress and achievement is central to school self review and development. Many of the school’s students are Māori and a small number have Pacific heritage. The school acknowledges children’s cultures and recognises the local Tainui kawa. Parents and whānau are increasingly involved in the development of tikanga and te reo Māori in the school’s curriculum.

The principal, who was new at the time of the 2011 ERO review, has brought about significant improvements through consultation and collaboration with staff and the community. Board members and staff are proud of the changes they are making and how they are promoting positive outcomes for students.

2 Learning

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

The school is using student achievement information effectively. Teachers are strengthening moderation practices and making increasingly well-informed judgements about students’ achievement in relation to National Standards. School leaders use this information to monitor the progress of individual students, and different groups of students. The board receives well-analysed achievement information. Data trends indicate that students make steady progress, with many achieving the literacy and mathematics standards by Year 7 and 8.

Achievement information is also used to identify students needing additional learning support. The board employs teacher aides to help teachers to implement targeted support programmes. Teachers are developing programme planning to more specifically cater for students’ different needs and abilities. These strategies are successfully accelerating student progress.

The principal has a key role in leading teaching and learning development. Her understanding about the use of achievement information is improving how students engage in the learning process. Teachers’ professional development has been thoughtfully selected and is benefitting student learning.

Students are becoming self managing learners. The principal agrees that as teachers make learning steps more explicit and visible, students will be able to set goals that help them and their parents understand more about how they learn. Teachers are well prepared for this next step in personalising student learning and success.

3 Curriculum

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

Teachers are currently reviewing the school’s curriculum. They have examined ways to make the school curriculum more relevant and meaningful to the students, their parents and the school community. Teachers have compared the principles of The New Zealand Curriculum (NZC) with the school’s vision and values. The integration of tikanga and te reo Māori has been a deliberate and well considered step in aligning the curriculum with school values.

Students have a well-resourced curriculum and good access to digital learning technologies. They use these technologies for research, and for storing and sharing their work. The board has generously supported the curriculum through providing a new resource room, staff room, modern learning environments and refurbished classrooms.

Student and parent perspectives contribute to the curriculum. Students have opportunities to develop skills in leadership, peer support and peer mediation. Senior teachers are building connections with early childhood centres and secondary schools. These positive relationships are supporting children and families when students start school and move into secondary education.

Students appreciate opportunities for education outside the classroom. Camps and trips are well planned and add interest to learning. Students also enjoy opportunities to participate in sporting activities, music and creative arts. Gardening, which is part of the school’s focus on sustainability, includes cooking and celebrating seasonal produce.

Teachers are incorporating thinking skills into curriculum programmes. These skills support the new inquiry approach to learning that teachers are developing. Teachers’ work to improve writing programmes is likely to support students to think critically, collaborate, and express ideas through their inquiry.

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

The school affirms tamariki Māori and their whānau. Tikanga Māori informs the school’s values of manaaki, ngākau, mana, hiranga and turangawaewae. Whānau are welcome in the school and have a designated room where they can gather to support each other and contribute to school developments.

Recent contact with kaumatua through the local marae is allowing students to experience pōwhiri, kapahaka and develop their understandings of Tainui kawa. These experiences are contributing to the pride that Māori students have for their language, culture and identity.

The school has been involved with other schools in Te Huarahi, a locally based project designed to promote whānau engagement. The school has been able to share its successes and learn from other schools in promoting positive partnerships with whānau.

Teacher appraisal and professional learning supports success for Māori students. Teachers reflect critically on their own practice and consider how they can improve Māori student engagement in learning.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is well placed to make ongoing improvements. The principal and board have developed comprehensive long-term plans based on clear strategic priorities. These goals and plans are well aligned and provide a useful framework for self review and school development.

Responsible leadership, staff collaboration and meaningful consultation have guided the considerable school improvements. The school’s vision to create pathways for student success is building a shared professional culture for the staff that supports positive outcomes for students.

The principal’s emphasis on community involvement is well supported by the board. Trustees have attended training and reviewed their governance responsibilities and procedures. They are developing practices that are likely to be maintained with future changes in board membership.

The community is purposefully engaged in the school. The school gardening project is encouraging the involvement of parents and extended whānau. Together with a proactive parent association, the community supports all students to be able to participate fully in the curriculum. Good information is available to parents and the community through school newsletters and the developing website.

The principal agrees that the next stage of school development should focus on embedding teachers’ professional learning and continuing to lift student achievement and rates of progress.

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.

ERO encourages trustees to review the board’s policy for managing student behaviour. Expectations for managing student behaviour, including suspensions and exclusions are clearly set out in the Ministry of Education guidelines and resources.

Conclusion

Paerata School is well led and managed. Consultation and self review result in ongoing school improvement. An emphasis on targeting students’ specific learning needs is resulting in more responsive learning programmes. Community support contributes to positive outcomes for students. Tikanga and te reo Māori benefit all learners, particularly tamariki Māori.

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

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

12 September 2014

About the School

Location

Paerata, Pukekohe

Ministry of Education profile number

1414

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

91

Gender composition

Boys 52%

Girls 48%

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/ Pākehā

Tongan

Samoan

other ethnicities

69%

9%

15%

5%

2%

Review team on site

August 2014

Date of this report

12 September 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

July 2011

August 2008

December 2005