Malfroy School

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

196 Malfroy Road, Hillcrest, Rotorua

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School Context

Malfroy School is located in suburban Rotorua and provides education for students in Years 1 to 6. The school’s roll of 333, includes 189 Māori students. There is increasing cultural diversity in the student population. The school includes two Rūmaki classes for 30 students where the medium of instruction is in te reo Māori and a Year 1 to 8 Montessori class.

The school’s vision and belief is to build confident, self-directed life-long learners and responsible citizens who will strive to do their personal best and help to make a happy and caring school. In 2018 the school was a gold award health promoting school.

The school values are:

  • manaakitanga

  • whanaungatanga

  • inclusion of all

  • respect for diversity

  • wellbeing for success.

Malfroy School has strategic priorities for 2019 that focus on:

  • student learning
  • student wellbeing
  • connecting our curriculum
  • learning environments
  • community engagement
  • theory of improvement.

Since the previous ERO review in 2014 the leadership team has remained the same and there have been some changes to the teaching team. There have been new trustees co-opted onto the board including the chairperson.

Teachers have undertaken professional learning and development in a wide range of areas including future focussed learners, positive behaviour for learning, literacy, science, digital technology, assessment and visible learning.

The school is a member of the Rotorua Central 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
  • wellbeing
  • behaviour
  • attendance.

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 outcomes for all students.

Information gathered for all students between 2016 and 2018 shows student achievement has remained consistent in writing, and has fluctuated in reading and mathematics. The school reports that an increasing number of students enter at five years of age with low levels of literacy and the roll tends to fluctuate with a high number of students enrolling and leaving throughout the year.

In 2018 the large majority of students achieved expected levels in writing, and the majority in reading and mathematics. This data also indicates that Māori and NZ European/Pākehā students achieve at comparable levels in reading. NZ European/Pākehā significantly outperform Māori in mathematics and to a lesser extent in writing. The large majority of Pacific students achieve at expected levels in reading, writing and mathematics. Girls and boys achieve at comparable levels in mathematics. In writing girls achieve at higher levels, and there is significant disparity between boys and girls in reading.

In the Rūmaki section of the school a large majority of students achieve at or above expectation in pānui and pāngarau. In tuhituhi just over half of the students are at or above expectations.

Students with additional learning needs are making good progress against their individual learning and behaviour goals.

Information collected in a survey of students in Years 3 to 6 indicates that the school effectively supports student wellbeing. Attendance and school behaviour data show consistent or improving trends in engagement and this has been attributed to the ongoing strategic focus in these areas.

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

Leaders collated information about accelerated learning during the ERO review which shows effective acceleration in achievement for some Māori and other students who need this.

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?

Students participate and learn in collaborative and inclusive learning communities. They experience relationships of care and connectedness that include mahi tahi, manaakitanga and whanaungatanga. Transition processes for students into and out of the school are positive and well managed. Parents and whānau are welcomed into the school and regular events such as whānau breakfasts strengthen inclusion and parent partnerships. Classroom programmes motivate and engage children, providing independent and cooperative learning opportunities. There are positive and respectful relationships between teachers and students that promote wellbeing and a sense of belonging.

Leaders collaboratively develop a shared vision and direction for the school. They provide effective support for staff with a focus on improving student progress and achievement. The collective approach to building teacher capability promotes leadership, innovation and improvement of teaching and learning. There is a planned and considered approach to change management that supports sustainability of initiatives and professional learning. Leaders are supported by the board to deliver equitable opportunities to students, most recently in digital technology. Trustees receive regular information on strategic goals. Leaders have established effective education networks within the local Kāhui Ako which is strengthening interventions for all at-risk learners.

Students with additional learning needs are well supported. Processes and practices to identify these students are thorough. There is a wide range of initiatives and programmes in place to support at-risk students including a particular focus on early literacy skills. Input from a wide range of external support agencies is accessed where appropriate. A knowledgeable special education needs coordinator (SENCO) works cooperatively with teachers and a team of experienced teacher aides. Together they provide appropriate and effective support to students with identified learning needs. The SENCO also reports to leaders and the board regularly on outcomes for at-risk learners.

Systematic inquiry processes support progress for at-risk learners. There is a range of school systems and practices that enable leaders and teachers to work collaboratively to respond to learners’ strengths and needs. This includes professional learning groups, robust appraisal processes and access to evidence-based professional learning opportunities and resources. Organisational structures and effective communication at all levels of the school promotes evaluation and knowledge building to improve outcomes for at-risk learners.

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

Leaders, trustees and teachers need to implement a more aligned approach to accelerating learning for all at-risk students.

This should include:

  • developing more inclusive school-wide targets for all identified groups of at-risk learners and reporting regularly to the board how effectively their progress is being accelerated

  • leaders and teachers more consistently tracking and monitoring at-risk learners with a focus on accelerating their progress

  • teachers continuing to strengthen formative assessment practices, particularly students’ understanding of their learning pathways, progress and specific next learning steps

  • rūmaki teachers strengthening their approach to oral language development.

Leaders are currently reviewing the school’s curriculum. They have accessed external professional development and undertaken community consultation. As part of this process consideration should also be given to including the dual medium aspect of the school in curriculum documents.

3 Other Matters

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to theEducation (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

No international students were enrolled at the time of the ERO review.

4 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 Children’s Act 2014.

5 ERO’s Overall Judgement

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

ERO’s Framework: Overall School Performance is available on ERO’s website.

6 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • a culture that creates a sense of connectedness and belonging
  • leadership that provides clear direction and builds teacher capability
  • provision of programmes and practices for children with additional learning needs.

Next Steps

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

  • a more aligned approach to accelerating the progress of all students whose learning is at risk
  • curriculum review that reflects current programmes and acknowledges the dual medium aspect of the school.

Phil Cowie

Director Review and Improvement Services

Central Region

17 July 2019

About the school



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll


Gender composition

Female 52% Male 48%

Ethnic composition

Māori 57%
NZ European/Pākehā 21%
Cook Island Māori 5%
Pacific 5%
Indian 4%
Other 8%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)


Provision of Māori medium education


Number of Māori medium classes


Total number of students in Māori medium (MME)


Total number of students in Māori language in English medium (MLE)


Number of students in Level 1 MME


Number of students in Level 4a MLE


Review team on site

May 2019

Date of this report

17 July 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review February 2015
Education Review August 2011
Education Review August 2008


Malfroy school students are well supported to learn and achieve and to develop a range of knowledge and skills. High priority is placed on providing an inclusive school culture, effective teaching, and on the acceleration of students who are yet to meet National Standards for their year levels.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in four-to-five years.

1 Context

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

Malfroy School serves a diverse multicultural community and is located in suburban Rotorua. The school is characterised by its wide range of educational opportunities, including mainstream, rumaki, bilingual and Montessori classes and two special needs classes attached to Kea Street School. The school also offers after-school care and pre-school transition programmes.

The school has a positive reporting history with ERO. The 2011 ERO report noted that the school provided an inclusive learning environment that fosters life-long learning skills and competencies for students. The school continues to place significant emphasis on promoting values of success, achieving personal best and respect for others. Cornerstone values and a strong focus on students developing a range of personal and interpersonal skills underpin all aspects of school life. Malfroy School has won a ‘school of character’ award for its initiatives that promote positive behaviour, citizenship, school culture and student achievement.

Students and staff benefit from a stable leadership team who provide strong and effective leadership, consistency and continuity for the school. Teachers are hard-working and engaged in school-wide professional learning and development to enhance their classroom teaching. The board of trustees, led by an experienced chairperson, provides effective school governance. A family-oriented environment is promoted through warm, caring and respectful relationships at all levels in the school.

2 Learning

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

The school uses achievement information well to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement. Teachers’ analyse and use assessment information to plan purposeful reading, writing and mathematics programmes. An ongoing development since the last ERO review is teacher’s deliberate use of assessment data to identify and address the specific learning needs of a target group of students. Teachers are expected to use the outcomes for these students to evaluate their teaching practice. This process is further enhanced through frequent peer observations, collegial and professional dialogue and appraisal discussions. A next step is for teachers to continue to develop school-wide consistency in the use of learning intentions, success criteria and teacher feedback and feed-forward.

The principal and senior leadership team have continued to strengthen the schools effectiveness in improving outcomes for students, particularly for students who are achieving well below their peers. They work with teachers to identify strategies or specific programmes and support for every student who is linked to annual charter targets. The senior leadership team have developed a very good school-wide process for carefully tracking these students' progress. This allows them to quickly respond to each student’s emerging needs and to monitor their progress. Senior leaders present achievement information to the board that generates robust discussion about student needs and resourcing.

To build on these good practices, senior leaders and ERO agree that the use of the school-wide approach to tracking of students who are in the charter target group be further extended to include all priority learners. Senior leaders should also ensure that a strong emphasis is placed on raising the achievement of Pacific students and boys in reading and writing.

Students who are achieving below their peers are clearly identified. Their learning and progress is very closely monitored. The school provides an extensive range of learning support programmes for these students. Achievement data shows that most students make very good progress and catch up to levels of their peers as they progress through the school.

Student achievement information for 2013 shows that the majority of students, including Māori, achieved at or above the National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. Data in 2013 the rumaki class also shows that the majority of students were achieving at or above Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori.

3 Curriculum

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

The Malfroy School curriculum strongly promotes and supports students’ learning. The curriculum is well designed and closely aligned to the principles and key competencies of The New Zealand Curriculum. Priority is given to literacy, mathematics, health and physical education and information and communication technologies (ICT). A strong focus on students developing a broad range of knowledge, attributes and personal and interpersonal skills continues to be a significant feature of the curriculum.

Students benefit from a well-coordinated and comprehensive approach to the provision of learning and pastoral support. They have extensive opportunities to participate in a wide range of sporting, cultural, academic, gifted and talented education and leadership programmes and activities.

The school has established a strong culture of ongoing improvement of teaching and ERO observed many examples of effective teaching practice. These included:

  • consistent analysis and use of assessment data to diagnose student strengths and needs
  • grouping of students based on identified learning needs and use of an inquiry approach for priority groups of students
  • use of effective and targeted instructional strategies to meet the needs of students
  • positive and affirming interactions among teachers and students
  • high levels of engagement and students positive attitude to learning
  • reinforcement of school values and expectations.

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

Māori students fill prominent school leadership roles in tikanga Māori and kapa haka, performing arts and sport, as well as being student leaders and mentors. Māori students engage well in learning programmes and school activities.

Students in the rumaki classes are well supported and are developing confidence in te reo Māori. A next step for rumaki teachers is to complete the development of its curriculum based on Te Mārautanga of Aotearoa. Consideration should be given to ensuring the unique dialect of Te Arawa is promoted and that the history, knowledge and stories of Ngāti Whakaue continue to be strongly reflected in the curriculum.

The school enjoys the support of many Māori parents who offer a range of skills and expertise. Values of aroha and manaakitanga are evident in the day-to-day life of the school. The school’s inclusive culture and restorative ethos support Māori student engagement. Malfroy School is a place where Māori students belong and can stand tall.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is very well placed to sustain and improve its performance because of the following positive factors:

Governance is very effective. Knowledgeable and dedicated trustees have relevant skill sets and expertise that help them to effectively undertake their governance responsibilities. They are well led by a chairperson who is committed to and works collaboratively to ensure the effective operation of the board. They use evidence well to inform change and support innovation and they have a very good understanding of self review and strategic planning that is supported by strong systems for reporting. They are focused on enhancing educational outcomes for students and establishing priorities for ongoing school improvement.

The principal is reflective and focused on the needs of students. He takes a considered approach, is methodical, well informed, and up-to-date with current research. He leads by example and is setting clear direction for school improvement. He is well supported by an experienced, hardworking and effective senior leadership team. They are making effective use of achievement information to inform decision making at a strategic and individual student level particularly for priority groups of learners.

Teacher professional learning and development is continually promoted within a supportive and reflective staff culture.

There are well-established systems that promote a positive and inclusive school culture. The well-coordinated and comprehensive pastoral care system is a strong feature of the school.

The school sets high expectations for Māori students and has established a culture unpinned by the values of manaakitanga and whanaungatanga. Māori learners are achieving and progressing at rates similar to other students.

Parents, whānau and the wider community provide strong support for school leaders and staff. They are actively encouraged to contribute to decision making and are well informed by newsletters, parent education evenings and whānau hui.

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.


Malfroy school students are well supported to learn and achieve and to develop a range of knowledge and skills. High priority is placed on providing an inclusive school culture, effective teaching, and on the acceleration of students who are yet to meet National Standards for their year levels.

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in four-to-five years.

Dale Bailey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

9 February 2015

About the School



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll


Gender composition

Boys 50% Girls 50%

Ethnic composition









Special Features

Rumaki, Montessori, attached satellite classes

Review team on site

November 2014

Date of this report

9 February 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review 

August 2011

August 2008