Hikuai School

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Education institution number:
1737
School type:
Full Primary
School gender:
Co-Educational
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
48
Telephone:
Address:

24 Hikuai School Road, Hikuai

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School Context

Hikuai School is located near Pauanui, on the Coromandel Peninsula, catering for children in Years 1 to 8. The school roll is currently 50 students of whom four identify as Māori. Students come from the Hikuai, Pauanui and Tairua area.

The school’s vision statement, ‘striving towards my pinnacle’, is focused on creating a stimulating environment that supports each learner to reach their pinnacle. The school has well-established ‘totara’ values related to being trustworthy, organised, thoughtful, ambitious, respectful, resilient and aware. Annual targets are focused on accelerating the progress of students achieving below expected levels in reading, writing and mathematics.

A new principal was appointed in January 2018, and since the 2015 ERO report there have been some staff changes and new trustees have been elected.

Hikuai School is part of the Coromandel Community of Learning|Kāhui Ako.

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

  • reading, writing and mathematics.

Evaluation Findings

1 Equity and excellence – achievement of valued outcomes for students

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

The school is working towards achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for all of its students. School achievement information at the end of 2017 shows that nearly all students achieved at or above national expectations in reading, mathematics and writing. Overall levels of achievement in reading, writing and mathematics between 2015 and 2017 increased. All girls are achieving at or above national expectations in reading, writing and mathematics. Boys are not achieving as well as girls in reading, writing and mathematics. The small number of Māori students are achieving as well as other students in the school.

1.2 How well is the school accelerating learning for those Māori and other students who need this?

The school responds effectively to Māori and other students whose learning and achievement need acceleration. The school has information about accelerated progress and achievement for individual students including Māori. Analysed student achievement information shows school-wide acceleration of progress in reading, writing and mathematics for many at-risk students.

2 School conditions for equity and excellence – processes and practices

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

The school is providing a broad, responsive curriculum with an appropriate focus on reading, writing and mathematics. There is a wide range of academic, sporting and cultural opportunities for students to participate in. Teachers know their target students well and plan appropriate programmes to accelerate learning. They use assessment information well to support differentiated planning and teaching. There is increased evidence of the use of te reo and tikanga Māori throughout the school. Environments are managed in ways that support participation and engagement in learning. Relationships are respectful and productive. Students learn in caring, collaborative classroom environments.

Effective use is made of student achievement information. There are clear systems and procedures in place to identify, monitor and report on the progress and achievement of priority students. The progress of all students below and well below national expectations is clearly tracked and monitored. The school systematically collects a range of data on student outcomes, which it uses to show students accelerated progress. Students with additional learning needs participate in learning opportunities that provide appropriate support and challenge.

Effective internal evaluation informs school direction and target setting. Trustees are highly focused on student learning, wellbeing, achievement and progress. An experienced board chairperson leads a newly formed board. Trustees make well-informed resourcing decisions and consult with parents and whānau. They are committed to making a difference for students at risk with their learning.

The school has established productive learning partnerships with parents. There are well-developed processes in place for the school to engage in reciprocal relationships. Parents, whānau and the community are welcomed and involved in school activities as respected and valued partners in learning. Community and cultural resources are integrated in to relevant aspects of the school curriculum. The school maximises community resources to enhance student learning opportunities and wellbeing. The new principal is establishing positive links with parents and the wider community.

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

Further developments are needed in student agency and bicultural practice.

Teachers need to consider ways to strengthen:

  • the use of learning progressions to allow students to track their achievement and identify their next specific learning goals

  • meaningful integration of te reo and tikanga Māori in classroom programmes.

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:

  • collating and analysing achievement data that shows school-wide acceleration of progress in reading, writing and mathematics for a significant number of identified targeted students

  • effective internal evaluation that informs school direction and target setting

  • a school curriculum that strongly reflects the school’s vision, aims and aspirations for achievement and success

  • established relationships between the school and community that are positive and reciprocal

  • highly committed trustees who contribute to the success of the school and its students.

Next steps

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

  • building students’ assessment and ‘learning to learn’ capabilities to strengthen their independent learning dispositions

  • bicultural practices in classrooms to further promote success for Māori as Māori.

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

19 June 2018

About the school

Location

Hikuai, Coromandel Peninsula

Ministry of Education profile number

1737

School type

Full primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

50

Gender composition

Boys 27 Girls 23

Ethnic composition

Māori 4
Pākehā 45
Other 1

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

No

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

May 2018

Date of this report

19 June 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review May 2015
Education Review July 2012
Education Review August 2009

Findings

Hikuai School staff, trustees, parents/whānau and the wider community support the school and have a strong desire for all children who attend the school to be successful and well prepared for citizenship in the 21st century. Students enjoy a safe and inclusive environment for learning in well-resourced and suitable facilities.

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?

Students at Hikuai School demonstrate respectful relationships and an enthusiasm for learning. They are confident, set learning goals, monitor their progress, and have a strong sense of belonging. The school is characterised by positive communication networks that promote good relationships and a safe learning environment for staff and students.

The board appointed a new principal in December 2014. Since the last ERO review three new teachers have also been appointed and they are working with the principal to build a positive learning environment. Students, parents/ whānau and the wider community are actively engaged in building a positive school culture.

The principal has been proactive in addressing the areas for review and development identified in the 2012 ERO report. The areas identified are written as goals in the school's strategic plan. The school focus for 2015 on writing goals to raise student achievement and increase student’s capability to be self-managing learners. The aim is to improve the quality of teaching and learning in writing, and monitor school progress through appraisal and professional learning and development.

There is a good mix of new and experienced trustees on the board. They are well led by a highly skilled chairperson. Trustees work well together and are involved in many activities that include fundraising and education outside the classroom.

Hikuai School is a Years 1 to 8, rural primary school located near Tairua and Pauanui. It continues to have strong links with local community families who have been involved in the school for over five generations. The school provides education for 56 students, which includes seven students of Māori descent.

2 Learning

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

The school makes good use of student achievement information to make positive changes to learners’ engagement and learning. School strategic goals are determined using analysed achievement information, and there is now an alignment between these goals, school targets and teacher’s professional learning goals.

Teachers currently gather assessment information from a range of sources that includes day-to-day observations, learning conversations and nationally referenced tests. This information is used to:

  • identify the needs and abilities of individual students
  • plan appropriate programmes of learning
  • monitor and track the achievement and progress over time of both individuals and groups
  • develop school-wide achievement targets
  • report to parents, board and community.

The principal plans to introduce the Ministry of Education Progress and Consistency Tool (PaCT) and the use of other online resources to strengthen how teachers make overall teacher judgements in relation to the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. This is likely to improve the overall quality of teacher professional judgements about student progress and achievement, and contribute to improving teaching and learning strategies for students.

Students have an increasing understanding of their achievements and confidently articulate what they are learning. Their understanding about what they need to learn and how they can achieve success is improving.

A next step for teachers is to provide more meaningful feedback and co-construct next learning steps with students about how they might progress their learning. This is likely to encourage students to more effectively manage their learning, progress and achievement. In addition, students are likely to be more assured and share their progress and achievements with parents and whānau. This should enhance the three-way learning relationships among student, parents/ whānau and teacher.

The board makes effective use of achievement information to inform decision making and resource allocation as part of the strategic planning process.

Parents are welcomed into the school to discuss their children’s progress and achievement. There are both informal and formal interviews with teachers, which ensure parents have a good understanding of their children’s learning and progress.

Assessment information at the end of 2014 indicates high levels of achievement overall, with the significant majority of students, including Māori, achieving at and above the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics.

3 Curriculum

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

The school’s curriculum effectively promotes and supports student learning through an extensive range of educational experiences. Recent reviews ensure the curriculum is purposeful and meaningful for students. Initiatives such as students taking responsibility and assuming leadership roles, cross-level socialising activities, and whole school curriculum themes contribute to the creation of a positive learning environment for all students.

The principal and teachers regularly engage in reflective discussions about teaching and learning to provide a whole school curriculum programme that caters for all students. They have established clear and agreed expectations for teaching and learning across the school. The principal and teachers recognise that the goal is to increase student achievement in all curriculum areas.

The school is currently reviewing the use of information and communication technologies (ICT). The aim is to upgrade the current system and to ensure that students receive the maximum benefit from ICT as highly effective tools that enhance their learning. The alignment of high-quality teaching strategies that include the effective use of ICT, school strategic goals, professional learning and development and teacher appraisal, is likely to promote student engagement and learning.

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

The school charter acknowledges te Tiriti o Waitangi and identifies the school’s obligations to reflect the principles of partnership, identity, and the freedom to celebrate te reo and tikanga Māori.

Under the guidance of a Ngapuhi parent and with the support of the principal, trustees and community, the school’s bicultural development since the beginning of 2015 has significantly improved. The challenge for the school is to now consider how te reo and tikanga Māori is integrated into the curriculum, and how it is implemented at different year levels for all students.

The school is in the process of considering the Ministry of Education document Tā Taiako to further develop teacher responsiveness to the needs of Māori students.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is well placed to sustain and improve its performance. Trustees work collaboratively with the principal to review school systems and have a clear focus on raising student achievement. They have recently established a robust review process, which considers aspects of governance such as trustee roles and responsibilities, as well as policy review and school resourcing decisions.

The principal is well supported by the board and staff. Together they effectively manage and implement change, particularly to raise overall student achievement in relation to National Standards.

Parents/whānau and the wider community are very supportive of the school and have a strong desire for all children who attend the school to be successful and well prepared for citizenship in the 21st century.

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.

Conclusion

Hikuai School staff, trustees, parents/whānau and the wider community support the school and have a strong desire for all children who attend the school to be successful and well prepared for citizenship in the 21st century. Students enjoy a safe and inclusive environment for learning in well-resourced and suitable facilities.

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

Dale Bailey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

28 May 2015

About the School

Location

Hikuai, Waikato

Ministry of Education profile number

1737

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

56

Gender composition

Boys 29

Girls 27

Ethnic composition

Pākehā

Māori

49

7

Review team on site

May 2015

Date of this report

28 May 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Supplementary Review

May 2012

August 2009

June 2006