Pukekohe Hill School

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Summary

The current school roll is 576, of whom 149 children identify as Māori, 66 as of Pacific origin and 48 as Indian.

Since the 2012 ERO review the school has sustained a focus on improving educational outcomes for all children. Most trustees, including the current chairperson, are new to their governance roles and bring relevant skills and additional experiences to the board.

Effective leadership of learning and teaching have contributed to improved learning outcomes for children. At the time of this review the overall proportion of children achieving at or above the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics has steadily increased.

The school is a member Pukekohe Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako (CoL).

How well is the school achieving equitable outcomes for all children?

The school is responding well to Māori and other children whose learning and achieving need acceleration.

There are many school processes that effectively enable the achievement of equity and excellence for Māori and other children whose achievement needs accelerating.

Further development is needed in targeted action to raise and accelerate achievement and progress for Māori and Pacific children.

Children are achieving well. The school demonstrates strong progress toward achieving equity in educational outcomes, supported by effective, sustainable processes and practices.

Agreed next steps are to:

  • refine and further develop targeted action to accelerate the achievement and progress of all at risk learners

  • document clear alignment of school-wide achievement targets and teacher practice to accelerate achievement of identified at risk learners.

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

Equity and excellence

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

The school is responding well to Māori and other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration.

School data shows that the number of children achieving at or above the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics has increased each year (2014 to 2016). In 2016 a high proportion of the Year 6 cohort achieved the National Standards in reading and writing.

School data also shows that the achievement of Māori children is being accelerated year to year. However some disparity still exists for Māori, and to a greater extent for Pacific.

The school has well-developed processes for tracking and reporting the achievement and progress of individual and groups of children. Many children make accelerated progress in their first two years, including those who spend their initial learning in the reception class. Data also shows a high proportion of children in the Māori enrichment class make accelerated progress.

The school’s achievement targets in its charter need to be more specific and measurable. This is necessary to achieve a clear line of sight with the work of leaders and teachers at syndicate and classroom level, where individualised targets are developed and carefully monitored.

The school’s processes for moderating overall teacher judgements (OTJs) are robust, well resourced and carefully monitored to ensure valid and reliable judgements. External moderation with other schools in the community of learning school further enhances reliability.

School conditions supporting equity and excellence

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

There are many school processes effectively enabling the achievement of equity and excellence for Māori and other children whose achievement needs accelerating.

The school has well-developed internal evaluation processes. Achievement information is well used by leaders and trustees to inform decision making. A school-wide culture of critical reflection is enabling improvement to be sustained.

The board demonstrates a relentless focus on improving learning outcomes for children. Trustees scrutinise comprehensive achievement and progress data to set priorities and allocate resources to support equitable outcomes.

High priority is given to the provision for additional learning support for children who are under achieving. The Special Needs Coordinator (SENCO) coordinates interventions and programmes and liaises closely with parents and whānau of children who are at risk. This responsive approach is contributing to high levels of engagement and success for these children.

High priority is placed on developing and maintaining reciprocal partnerships for learning, particularly with parents and whānau of at risk learners. They are consulted and kept well informed about their child’s learning, support and interventions for children at risk. The language, culture and identity of Māori children and their whānau is valued and celebrated, building an inclusive and welcoming culture for all children and the wider community.

School leadership for learning is empowering and well informed. There is a clearly articulated vision and expectation for teaching and learning. Leaders are focused on building professional knowledge and capability of staff. Leaders are actively involved in local and regional educational networks.

The school’s curriculum is responsive to the identified learning needs of most at risk children. Teachers use effective strategies to raise the achievement and accelerate the progress of individuals and groups of children. They carefully track the progress of these learners.

There is a shared learning pedagogy with children empowered to lead and understand their own learning. An experienced team of support staff implement well-monitored programmes and interventions for children including for English language learners.

Sustainable development for equity and excellence

What further developments are needed in school processes to achieve equity and excellence?

Further development is needed in targeted action to raise and accelerate achievement and progress for Māori and Pacific children. The school is not yet making sustained improvements in learning outcomes for these identified groups of at risk learners.

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

  • 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. 

Going forward

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

Children are achieving well. The school demonstrates strong progress toward achieving equity in educational outcomes, supported by effective, sustainable processes and practices.

Agreed next steps are to:

  • refine and further develop targeted action to accelerate the achievement and progress of all at risk learners

  • document clear alignment of school-wide achievement targets and teacher practice to accelerate achievement of identified at risk learners.

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

Lynda Pura-Watson

Deputy Chief Review Officer

8 June 2017

About the school 

Location

Pukekohe

Ministry of Education profile number

1451

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 – 8)

School roll

576

Gender composition

Girls 51% Boys 49%

Ethnic composition

Pākehā 47%
Māori 27%
Pacific 12%
Indian 8%
Other European 3%
Chinese 1%
Other Asian 1%
SE Asian 1%

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

March 2017

Date of this report

8 June 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review December 2012
Education Review June 2009
Education Review June 2006

 

1 Context

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

Pukekohe Hill School is a large, long-established primary school. It has a strong sense of history and serves a culturally diverse community in Franklin. Many families stay in the community for only short periods. School information shows that just over half of the students in Year 6 began their schooling as a new entrant at this school.

The board and senior leaders responded positively to ERO’s previous report, using it as a basis for strategic planning over the past three years. Professional learning that has supported developments in the school includes:

  • a focus on leadership and assessment
  • numeracy and literacy teaching and learning
  • increasing student awareness of their own learning.

In 2010 the school community revised the school’s vision and mission statements and created a new school logo to better reflect the community and school setting.

Since 2011, the school has been working with a Ministry of Education (MoE) Student Achievement Function Practitioner (SAF). As a result an action plan to further raise Māori and Pacific student achievement has been developed. Another important feature has been the school’s Involvement with a cluster of Pukekohe/Franklin schools and early childhood centres in the Te Huarahi initiative to strengthen partnerships with Māori whānau and improve the achievement of Māori students.

2 Learning

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

The board and senior leaders use achievement information well. Achievement reports indicate that most students achieve at or above the National Standard in reading, writing and mathematics. Senior leaders analyse data for the whole school, for separate groups and report this information to the board. It would also be useful to report to the board on trends and patterns of achievement over students’ time at school, to demonstrate the impact of teaching and learning practices on outcomes for students.

The board and senior leaders identify and set school-wide targets that focus on accelerating the learning of priority students to help them meet the appropriate National Standard. These target priorities inform the school’s professional learning focus and resource allocation. Senior leaders monitor and report to the board on achievement progress during the year. It would be useful for the board if senior leaders made the progress of targeted students more explicit in their reports.

Senior leaders and teachers make good use of a wide variety of valid, reliable achievement information to:

  • identify students with special abilities and needs, and those at risk of not achieving
  • inform some in-class ability groupings, support programmes and strategies to accelerate progress
  • consider the success of school initiatives
  • support students to set goals and to understand ways of identifying and monitoring their own progress and achievement.

Teachers increasingly use plain language in their twice yearly reports to parents. These reports are useful for parents to support ongoing learning at home.

Students are confident and collaborative in their interactions with their teachers and each other. Respectful and supportive relationships are evident throughout the school. There are examples of tuakana/teina relationships where older or more able students support and are role models for their peers.

The school’s vision of supporting lifelong learners is evident in the ways that staff promote student self management, risk taking, independent thinking and learning, and in the high levels of student participation in classroom discussions.

The board and teachers have worked to strengthen relationships with and increase the involvement of families in school life. They have worked positively with the Ministry of Education to respond to suggestions from the Pacific community and have formulated plans to raise the achievement of Pacific students.

The senior leadership team is now developing ways to better evaluate the effectiveness of interventions and initiatives introduced to accelerate student achievement.

3 Curriculum

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

The school’s curriculum is linked with the board’s strategic direction and promotes and supports student learning effectively. The school’s curriculum is based on The New Zealand Curriculum and strongly reflects local contexts. It places an emphasis on literacy and numeracy teaching and learning. Alongside these areas, teachers deliver the other essential learning areas within an integrated approach. Useful guidelines for presenting the school curriculum are well documented and classroom implementation is closely monitored.

Teachers and children use resources well to support learning programmes. Children use information and communication technology tools competently. Classroom environments and programmes are strongly learning focused and are welcoming and well organized.

Good quality teaching practices are generally consistent throughout the school. The focus of teachers’ professional learning and development is highly evident and teachers regularly reflect on their teaching and learning. There are good examples of teachers continuing to strengthen their evaluation of the effectiveness of programmes in promoting positive outcomes for students.

ERO and senior leaders agreed that in order to enhance teacher self review senior leaders should:

  • continue to establish expectations and guidelines for evaluation
  • extend teachers’ understanding about in-depth inquiry into their practice.

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

The school is continuing to build on recent positive developments to meet the goals of Te Huarahi. Through this initiative the school has made progress in raising the achievement and attendance of Māori students and involving whānau in their children’s education. Tailored professional development has increased teacher understanding about culturally appropriate practices for teaching Māori students. Linking the MoE publication: Tātaiako, Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori, to performance management systems should enhance positive outcomes for Māori students.

Teachers focus particularly on supporting Māori students who are not succeeding to their potential. Separate information about Māori student progress is shared with the board as part of the regular student achievement report. Information shows that Māori students are making steady progress in relation to National Standards over the year.

Whānau support the school’s plan to establish a Māori enrichment class for senior students in 2013. Student leadership and identity is supported through a strong kapa haka, school ambassador programme and Māori concepts are included in classroom programmes. Regular whānau hui and a whānau survey provide opportunities for consultation. A hauora room has been established where the school is able to engage with the community. Links have been established with the nearby Ngā Hau e Whā marae.

The school is situated in Tainui and senior leaders should now consult with kaumātua about establishing an appropriate kawa for school events.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is well placed to sustain existing good practices and continue to improve its performance.

The board is well informed, has pride in the school and is conscientious about its legal obligations. Trustees work collaboratively with senior leaders and are transparent in their governance role. They have established good systems for self review and use achievement data to inform resourcing decisions, with a focus on improving outcomes for students. Many teachers and trustees have served the school for long periods of time.

A recent focus on investigating the school’s history has drawn the community more closely into the school. Improved communication and relationships with families contribute to the ongoing sustainability of the school.

There is good alignment between the board’s strategic plan, self review, school operations and the curriculum. The board could consider refining policies and procedures to reflect the board’s awareness of the distinction between governance and management. Senior leaders have developed indicators of achievement and core competencies that support the school vision statement. They will use these to critique performance and identify ways to enrich school practices.

The school has allocated resources to foster improvements for Pacific students and to strengthen community and whānau relationships. Ongoing professional development with Te Huarahi and with other external providers is likely to support continuing improvement in the school.

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students (the Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. No international students were enrolled at the time of the ERO review.

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 four-to-five years.

Makere Smith

National Manager Review Services Northern Region (Acting)

21 December 2012

About the School

Location

Pukekohe, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

1451

School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll

604

Gender composition

Boys 56% Girls 44%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

Māori

Indian

Other European

Tongan

Other Asian

Other Pacific

African

50%

22%

8%

7%

4%

4%

3%

2%

Special Features

Satellite class from Parkside School

Review team on site

November 2012

Date of this report

21 December 2012

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

June 2009

June 2006

November 2002