Matamata Intermediate

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School Context

Matamata Intermediate is situated in Matamata, and caters for students in Years 7 and 8. The roll is currently 332. Approximately 20% of the students are Māori, the majority of whom whakapapa to Ngāti Raukawa and Ngāti Hauā.

A new principal was appointed during 2018. The leadership team’s roles and responsibilities have been restructured to enhance the response to student needs.

In 2017, the school reviewed and refreshed its vision, values and strategic aims. The school culture is based on the core virtues of courtesy, common sense and consideration, and the vision of ‘Inspired Learners. Empowered to Achieve’. Through the core beliefs of collaboration, connections and belonging, high expectations, relevance, and innovation the school’s strategic aims are to:

  • ako - develop teacher capability and leadership frameworks
  • wānanga - build a learning framework that is challenging, relevant, engaging and future focused
  • te taiao akoranga - implement flexible learning environments
  • whanaungatanga - continue to strengthen home-school and community partnerships.

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

  • reading, writing and mathematics
  • science
  • technology
  • the Arts
  • health and physical education.

The 2013 ERO report identified the key areas for improvement as strengthening teacher practice to enable students to take increasing responsibility for their own learning, raise Māori achievement and strengthen bicultural practice school-wide. Whilst there has been improvement in these areas, they remain development priorities for the school.

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 not yet achieving equitable outcomes for all its students.

Most students achieve well in reading. The majority of students achieve at expected levels in writing and mathematics. Improvements overtime for all learners are evident in these three learning areas.

Māori learners achieve significantly below non-Māori learners in writing and reading. This disparity is being successfully addressed by the school. Māori and non-Māori learners’ achievement is now comparable in mathematics.

The school’s achievement information indicates that most students achieve at expected levels in science, technology, the arts and health and physical education.

Boys achieve significantly below girls in reading and writing. This disparity has yet to be addressed by the school.

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

The school responds well to Māori students whose learning and achievement needs acceleration.

In 2017, interventions to accelerate progress and achievement for those students identified as below curriculum expectations were effective in reading and in mathematics. However, these were not effective for accelerating achievement in writing.

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?

Trustees, leaders and teachers have a common vision and purpose for change and improvement. The leadership team models high-quality practice and is effectively building school-wide capacity. A well-considered and reflective approach to implementing the school’s strategic direction is highly evident. Teachers’ professional learning and development (PLD) needs are well known. Intentional and aligned systems and processes support accountability and build teacher capability to improve outcomes for learners.

A consultative approach ensures that the community’s voice is valued and informs strategic direction. Trustees bring a wide range of knowledge and expertise to their roles. They actively identify and undertake training to further their stewardship understanding. Trustees scrutinise a wide range of achievement information to support effective decision making for improvement.

Students experience a wide range of opportunities to extend their learning across the depth and breadth of the New Zealand Curriculum. The school’s core beliefs prioritise the foundations for an empowering learning culture. These are clearly integrated throughout programmes for learning. The collaborative and caring learning environments highlight teachers’ responsive practice for nurturing learners. Students’ progress and achievement is acknowledged and celebrated.

Learners with additional needs experience a collaborative wrap-around approach that supports progress, achievement and wellbeing. Strong connections with external agencies are highly evident. Parents, families and whānau are welcomed and are actively involved in planning and progress discussions. Targeted programmes, interventions and innovations support learners’ confidence and sense of belonging well. Students are willing to engage and are motivated in their learning.

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

Continuing to build leaders’ and teachers’ understanding of the effective use of achievement information to accelerate learners’ progress and achievement is a key next step. This should include the refining of school-wide targets to focus on all students below curriculum expectations for acceleration.

Deepening school-wide understanding of evaluation, inquiry and knowledge building is needed to support sustainability and inform ongoing improvement and innovation.

Continuing to build a school-wide understanding of culturally responsive practice to support improvements in the acceleration of progress and achievement of Māori students’ learning is a priority.

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.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified non-compliance in relation to police vetting.

  • while staff are vetted on appointment, this process must be repeated every three years.

In order to address this, the board of trustees must:

  1. ensure the regular police vetting of employees.
    [Education Act 1989 Sections 78C to 78CD]

Areas for improved compliance practice

To improve current practice, the board of trustees should:

  • review the school’s policies and procedures to ensure they are clearly aligned to current legislation and education guidelines to better support robust implementation.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • strong leadership to extend teacher capability that values parent, whānau, and student voice
  • the clear strategic direction that is improvement focussed, supporting and improving outcomes for learners
  • the collaborative and caring curriculum for an empowering learning culture.

Next steps

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

  • improving outcomes for all learners, to achieve equity and excellence for all groups in the school
  • inquiring into learning to inform strategies and innovations that have the most significant impact on accelerating positive outcomes for all groups of learners
  • building school-wide understanding of effective culturally responsive practice to enhance and empower Māori learner success
  • 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.

Adrienne Fowler

Director Review and Improvement Services

Te Tai Miringa - Waikato / Bay of Plenty Region

21 September 2018

About the school



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Intermediate (Year 7 to 8)

School roll


Gender composition

Boys 48% Girls 52%

Ethnic composition

Māori 20%
Pākehā 70%
Other ethnic groups 10%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)


Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

June 2018

Date of this report

21 September 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review December 2013
Education Review December 2009
Education Review February 2007

1 Context

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

Matamata Intermediate is situated in Matamata, and caters for students in Years 7 and 8 from Matamata township and the surrounding rural area. The roll is currently 355. Aproximately 25% of the students are Māori. The majority of these whakapapa to Ngāti Raukawa and Ngāti Hauā.

The board and senior leadership has remained stable since the last ERO review in December 2009. There have been some changes in staff since this time. The school continues to promote a very positive school climate and culture that is underpinned by the three key values of courtesy, common sense and consideration. Over the last two years there has been a significant focus on improving practice in the teaching of literacy. Priority has also been given to extending the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) to support learning programmes.

The school has had a positive ERO reporting history and enjoys positive relationships with parents and the wider community, contributing schools and the local college. There has been a focus on improving connections with Māori parents. A feature of the school continues to be the attractive and well maintained buildings and grounds.

2 Learning

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

The school makes highly effective use of student achievement information to make positive changes to learners’ engagement, progress and achievement. At a school-wide level, school leaders’ use a range of student achievement information effectively to set achievement targets, monitor the progress of groups of students and inform strategic decision making and ongoing school review. Targets and goals are set to address the progress and achievement of students achieving below expected levels. Strategic targets are also set to promote curriculum development. Targets and goals are challenging, focussed on school improvement and well understood by teachers.

Teachers successfully use achievement information to identify student learning needs and provide specific programmes to meet those needs. School leaders and staff have developed robust procedures for determining overall teacher judgements in relation to National Standards. These judgements consider a broad range of evidence from effective testing as well as teacher observation of student learning. A strength of the school is the high level of understanding that students have of achievement data and their use of it to set goals and manage their own learning. Parents receive detailed information about their child’s achievement and progress, including guidance for supporting students to improve their learning. There is a need to clarify terminology in reports to ensure that parents understand how their children are achieving against the National Standards.

The majority of students make significant progress over their two years at Matamata Intermediate School. This includes students requiring extra support and those with special abilities and talents. ERO observed high levels of student engagement, interest and enthusiasm for learning.

3 Curriculum

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

The Matamata Intermediate School Curriculum is highly effective in promoting and supporting student learning. The school has developed a coherent curriculum document, in consultation with the local community, that ensures the curriculum reflects the school’s vision and values and provides clear guidelines for teaching practice. Important features of the curriculum include:

  • close alignment with The New Zealand Curriculum (TNZC)
  • a strong focus on literacy and mathematics
  • the teaching of literacy and mathematics through relevant contexts from other subject areas
  • balanced coverage of all curriculum areas
  • the effective use of ICT
  • the way local contexts for learning are used and link to the school virtues and key competencies of the TNZC
  • well developed technology and arts programmes that reflect the school’s focus on literacy and mathematics.

The school’s curriculum reflects, and is responsive to, the school’s students and context. Along with high quality literacy and mathematical learning programmes, students have access to a rich range of opportunities in sport, culture and the performing arts.

Teachers are hard working and consistently demonstrate high quality practice in classrooms. They are strongly committed to supporting students across a wide range of school activities. They have high expectations for student learning and behaviour, and maintain strong, respectful and positive relationships with students. Teachers effectively use a range of appropriate strategies to engage students as active learners.

School leaders have established very effective systems that support teachers to reflect on and improve their practice. These systems include a robust teacher appraisal process and strong support for teachers in their first years of service.

The school has already identified that a useful next step is to strengthen the consistency of practices which encourage students to take increasing responsibility for their own learning across the school.

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

While Māori student achievement is below that of their non-Māori peers, the school is becoming increasingly focused on effective ways of promoting educational success for Māori as Māori. School leaders support a strong and active kapa haka, they are committed to engaging with the Māori community, and aspects of tikanga Māori are visible and included in school ceremonies and celebrations.

The Māori community is actively involved in the school. Leadership roles for Māori as Māori are promoted, and Māori students with specialist knowledge are used to teach and coach others. Māori content and perspectives are included in all topic studies and there are clear expectations for the teaching of the Māori language in the school. Māori parents express satisfaction with the way in which the school prepares their children academically for secondary school.

ERO and school leaders agree that it would be beneficial to:

  • strengthen the te reo Māori programme
  • further embed Māori preferred ways of teaching and learning
  • further promote the identity of Māori students by developing a systematic and sequential programme for teaching local tribal history.

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. A key element of this sustainability is the highly effective professional leadership that is being provided by the principal and senior leadership team, who are strongly focused on improving student learning and achievement.

Other features of the school that contribute to sustainability are:

  • effective governance that provides a clear vision and direction for the school
  • a culture of reflection and continuous improvement, which is supported by a range of effective systems for self review
  • students reporting that they feel safe and have a strong sense of belonging
  • high levels of parent and whānau engagement in the life of the school.

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.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

20 December 2013

About the School



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Intermediate (Years 7 to 8)

School roll


Gender composition

Girls 51% Boys 49%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā










Review team on site

November 2013

Date of this report

20 December 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

December 2009

February 2007

December 2003