Woodhill School

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

1555 State Highway 16, Woodhill, Helensville

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Woodhill School

Te Ara Huarau | School Profile Report  


This Profile Report was written within 6 months of the Education Review Office and ​Woodhill 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 


Woodhill School is a small rural school northwest of Auckland. It is situated within the rohe of Ngāti Whātua o Kaipara. Mana whenua actively supports the school. About half of the students are Māori and many whakapapa to the rohe.   

​​Woodhill School​’s strategic priorities for improving outcomes for learners are: 

  • Manaaki – to care 
  • Ako – to learn 
  • Whakawhanake – to grow 
  • Tikanga – ways of working 

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

ERO and the school are working together to evaluate and develop increased learning opportunities, through targeted professional development, to enable greater equity and excellent outcomes for all.   

The rationale for selecting this evaluation is to:  

  • support the aspiration of mana whenua, whānau and students to increase their level of te reo Māori and work towards the provision of bilingual education 
  • continue to support learners with additional needs so they feel success in their efforts  
  • further equip students for secondary schooling and entry to their chosen pathway. 

The school expects to see increased: 

  • levels of achievement for all students and effective use of formative assessment teaching practices 
  • cultural capabilities for all staff, including normalised use of te reo Māori me ngā tikanga Māori 
  • efforts to address barriers for learning, especially for those students at risk of not achieving. 


The school can draw from the following strengths to support its goal of developing increased learning opportunities, through targeted professional development, to enable greater equity and excellent outcomes for all.  

  • stable, committed, and passionate, staff and Board  
  • partnership with local marae, supported by Ngāti Whātua o Kaipara, and Woodhill School whānau who are committed to supporting the kura 
  • an established, inclusive learning environment which transitions and supports neurodiverse students in a positive and individualised manner  
  • an evolving localised curriculum founded in local pūrākau (stories) and the use of the neighbouring ngahere. 

Where to next?  

Moving forward, the school will prioritise professional development in Responsive Pedagogies for Teaching including cultural competency practices in order to improve learner success. 

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 

​​10 April 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 

Woodhill School

Board Assurance with Regulatory and Legislative Requirements Report 2023 to 2026 ​ ​ 

As of ​June 2023​, the ​Woodhill 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 ​Woodhill School,​ 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 ​ 

10 April 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 

Woodhill School - 18/12/2020


On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO ‘s overall evaluation judgement of Woodhill School’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Developing.

1 Background and Context

What is the background and context for this school’s review?

Woodhill School is a rural school west of Auckland. The school, sited on the land of the local iwi/hapū – Ngā Maunga Whakahii o Kaipara, has always been an important place for the Woodhill community.

The school caters for Years 1 to 8 learners. It has a roll of approximately 59 students, of whom 28 are Māori. The roll has increased significantly over the past year, with many enrolments coming from beyond the local community.

Students are taught in three multi-level classrooms, one of which was recently opened. One classroom is leased to Kumeu Christian School. The two schools share the outdoor play areas and the expertise and experience of staff from both schools.

ERO’s 2018 education report noted the very good progress made in some areas of school improvement, however some areas still needed to be addressed. Since 2018, the school has worked with ERO, the Ministry of Education (MoE), specialist advisors and other agencies to support continue school improvement.

The school is a member of Te Kāhui Ako o Kaipara.

2 Review and Development

How effectively is the school addressing its priorities for review and development?

Priorities identified for review and development

The following priorities for development were identified from the 2018 ERO report:

  • strengthening governance
  • improving community liaison and consultation
  • building teaching and learning practices
  • implementing a localised curriculum.

The principal, trustees and staff have made significant progress across all priority areas.

Strengthening governance

The capability of the board of trustees has been considerably strengthened. Trustees bring a wide range of experience to their governance roles. The board and the principal have worked collaboratively to improve areas including:

  • strengthening and formalising relationships with the local marae and whānau
  • strengthening internal evaluation processes
  • ensuring the board is meeting its governance responsibilities
  • scrutinising student assessment information to monitor progress and achievement
  • monitoring the impact of school changes on the viability and sustainability of the school
  • student-centredness to guide decision making.

The board recognises and values the school’s special history. Stronger connections with the local marae and whānau have assisted the board in regaining the support of the local community. Trustees’ commitment to the Treaty of Waitangi is demonstrated the through proactive approaches in seeking iwi partnership and shared decision-making.

Trustees have benefited from support and guidance provided by the principal during this period of development. Trustees are well placed to sustain progress made and to continue strengthening governance capability and capacity.

Improving community liaison and developing the localised curriculum

Trustees and school leaders demonstrate a strong commitment to liaising and consulting with the local community. Whānau and community members work in partnership with staff to support the implementation of the curriculum and to lead significant cultural activities. Learners have benefited from participating in learning opportunities alongside local people with specialised expertise.

The school curriculum is more connected to the local community and includes:

  • principles, values and expectations relevant to the Woodhill learners
  • more meaningful learning opportunities
  • a continuation of the well-established tuakana/teina learning relationships
  • increased emphasis on te reo me ngā tikanga Māori.
Building teaching and learning

Significant progress has been made in teaching and learning. This has been effectively led by the highly capable leadership and the willingness of staff to adopt new practices for improvement. Learning intentions are increasingly used in lessons and teaching strategies are learner focused. Teachers offer more opportunities for students to lead their own learning.

Student achievement information show improved levels of achievement including Māori student achievement. The achievement of students who have been at the school for some time are especially positive. The school’s information show some students have made accelerated progress. Teachers talk about the positive impact that home/school partnerships are having on improving outcomes for students.

The principal and trustees are highly supportive of and actively promote inclusive education. Improved teaching practices and additional MOE support have helped to build the school’s capability to cater for the increasing number of students with additional learning challenges.

Key next steps

The board, school leaders and teachers should continue to:

  • consult with the community to co-construct and strengthen the school’s local curriculum
  • develop ways to report to the board and community on students’ academic progress, and their achievement of the school’s valued outcomes
  • use a planned approach to build effective teaching practices.

3 Sustainable performance and self review

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

Woodhill School is now set up to sustain and continue to improve and review its performance.

The board’s consultative and culturally responsive approaches are impacting positively on the school. Trustees demonstrate a good understanding of the school’s next development priorities. They have worked successfully in partnership with the principal to establish the conditions necessary for ongoing school stability, growth and development.

Ongoing community liaison is now well established. Relationships within the school and community are enhanced by the principal’s commitment to growing partnerships and her modelling of solutions-based restorative practice.

Curriculum documents record the progress made in implementing a localised curriculum. Through this curriculum, students now have access to more engaging, relevant and meaningful learning opportunities.

The principal is implementing a strategic and phased approach to building staff capability. She is working with teachers to ensure ongoing improvements in curriculum planning and implementation. Teachers have responded positively to the professional development focused on student learning needs.

Key next steps

To build on school improvements, trustees and the principal could continue to:

  • build on trustees’ strengths to promote sustainability of strong governance
  • maintain a connection to Whiti Te Ra o Reweti marae and whānau, and the local hapū and iwi –Te Tao Ū and Ngāti Whātua o Kaipara.

4 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
  • school policies in relation to meeting the requirements of the Children’s Act 2014.


On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO ‘s overall evaluation judgement of Woodhill School’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.

Steve Tanner
Director Review and Improvement Services (Northern)
Northern Region - Te Tai Raki

18 December 2020

About the school

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