Te Mahoe School

Education institution number:
2009
School type:
Full Primary
School gender:
Co-Educational
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
41
Telephone:
Address:

842 Galatea Road, Lake Matahina, Whakatane

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Te Mahoe School

Findings

1 Background and Context

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

Te Mahoe school is a small rural school located 30km from Whakatāne near Lake Matahina and provides education for students in years 1 to 8. Since April 2018 the school has been part of a longitudinal evaluation process with ERO, focused on improving capability for school operation.

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO’s overall evaluation judgement is that Te Mahoe School has made sufficient progress to address the priorities that were identified for review and development. This report will serve as the Profile Report as the school transitions to ERO’s School Evaluation for Improvement | Te Ara Huarau model.

2 Review and Development

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

Priorities identified for review and development

The areas for review and improvement from the 2021 ERO report focused on:

  • building trustees’ knowledge and understanding of effective governance, processes and practices for school-wide improvement

  • developing robust tracking, monitoring and reporting processes

  • investigating the effectiveness of teaching strategies and learning programmes on student outcomes

  • deepening shared understandings of curriculum levels and expectations.

Progress

The board of trustees have engaged support from The New Zealand School Trustees Association (NZSTA) and The Ministry of Education (MoE) financial services, to strengthen effective governance, school financial practices and responsibilities. The school has implemented an externally provided, comprehensive and regularly updated school policy framework. The framework includes a full cycle of review to ensure policies and procedures remain current.

There has been significant improvement in strengthening teacher understanding of curriculum levels and expectations. Leaders and teachers have developed and implemented systems and processes to strengthen practices for assessing, monitoring and reporting learner progress and achievement. These improvements are supporting leaders, teachers and trustees to more effectively plan, resource and implement programmes and practices in response to learner needs.

The principal, supported by local community, is leading development of the school’s local curriculum, focused on Te Mahoe’s history, tikanga and mātauranga Māori. This work is strengthening valued relationships and connections with whānau, community and iwi, and empowering learners’ sense of identity and belonging.

The school continues to prioritise the enhancement and robust monitoring of recent improvements, along with increasing levels of student attendance. The school’s strategic goals confirm the focus on these priorities for continued improvement.

Te Mahoe School’s priorities for improving outcomes of equity and excellence for all learners are to:

  • develop a curriculum that supports akonga to reach their highest educational capability

  • foster an active community culture that supports and reflects local and cultural contexts for Te Mahoe school

  • build resilience and wellbeing for staff and students.

3 Sustainable performance and self review

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

The school is now in a better position to sustain, improve and review its performance. Trustees, leaders, and teachers have established positive relationships and clear, well-understood processes to enable them to continue to improve and sustain student learning, progress and achievement.  The board of trustees has developed confidence and capacity to govern the school effectively.

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.

Conclusion

The next public report on ERO’s website will be a Te Ara Huarau | School Evaluation Report and is due within three years.  

Phil Cowie
Director Review and Improvement Services (Central)
Central Region - Te Tai Pūtahi Nui

19 January 2023

About the school

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

Te Mahoe School - 22/01/2021

Findings

Te Mahoe School has made positive progress in relation to aspects of school improvement. Collaborative relationships and reflective practice are enhancing teaching and learning programmes. A sustained focus on improving leadership for learning, growing effective governance processes and practices and prioritising the understanding and use of internal evaluation is needed to improve outcomes for learners. 

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

1 Background and Context

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

Te Mahoe School, located in the rural area of Lake Matahina, south-west of Whakatāne, is a small, full primary school providing education for students in Years 1 to 8. All 40 students on the roll are Māori.

The school’s mission and vision is through ‘growing socially, academically and spiritually with whānau, hapū and iwi’, ākonga will ignite the fire, like the Mahoe’ in learners. The strategic intentions of the school are to improve outcomes for all learners, grow community participation in the local curriculum, continue to strengthen staff capability and ensure the board of trustees provides direction alongside the aspirations of the community.

Since April 2018, the school has been part of a longitudinal evaluation process with ERO to support building capability for school operation. In addition, the Ministry of Education and New Zealand School Trustees Association (NZSTA) have provided targeted support to address the areas identified in the 2018 ERO report. Positive progress in teaching and classroom practice is evident. Some improvement in internal evaluation and governance processes and practices are evident and these remain areas for improvement.

2 Review and Development

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

Priorities identified for review and development

The 2018 ERO report identified key areas for improvement as:

  • developing internal evaluation processes and practices to support accelerated learning

  • improving teaching strategies to accelerate and extend learning

  • addressing policies and procedures at board level.

ERO also identified several areas of non-compliance in the delivery of appropriate career education and guidance, and the urgent review and development of systems, policies and procedures for key aspects of school operation.

Progress

Clear and useful frameworks have been established to guide internal evaluation. Aspects of review for improvement are evident in classroom practices. During the onsite phase of the ERO review the achievement of learners participating in Reading Recovery programmes was analysed, to show effective acceleration for these students.

Calm, settled learning environments support targeted group work and independent learning. Learning is collaborative and co-constructed to deepen student engagement. Positive and respectful interactions and relationships are evident schoolwide. Detailed and differentiated planning includes deliberate tasks to respond to individual student needs. Teacher reflections highlight students’ learning preferences, successes, challenges and next steps.

Useful systems are in place to gather and collate schoolwide achievement information. Roles and responsibilities for teachers have been established to better guide and support practice. Whānau voice has been gathered to inform the developing localised curriculum and school operation. Whānau hui support leaders and teachers to foster student engagement.

Students at risk of underachievement are clearly identified by teachers. Inclusive targets responding to priority learners have been established in reading. A range of professional learning and development has been accessed to build teacher capability. Initiatives introduced are beginning to support deeper understanding of curriculum levels.

Trustees are representative of the school community and bring a range of knowledge to their roles. They have worked with NZSTA and continue to access online professional learning resources. Areas of non-compliance found in the 2018 ERO report have been addressed.

Key next steps

Trustees, leaders and teachers now need to extend their use of the school’s frameworks for effective evaluation. Undertaking complete cycles of evaluation that follow the guidelines provided should support improved knowledge about the impact strategies, initiatives and interventions have on improving student outcomes. Building leadership capability to adequately evaluate and report outcomes in relation to schoolwide achievement targets and school operation is also a priority. Attention to these aspects should support better informed resourcing and decision-making for improvement.

Leaders and teachers need to use gathered and collated data more effectively to analyse student progress and achievement information. Priority should to be given to:

  • developing robust tracking, monitoring and reporting processes

  • investigating the effectiveness of teaching strategies and learning programmes on student outcomes

  • deepening shared understandings of curriculum levels and expectations.

Trustees need to develop their knowledge and understanding of effective governance for schoolwide improvement. This should include:

  • understanding of the necessary assurances to evidence that legislative requirements are met

  • appropriate practices for recording meetings are strengthened

  • ensuring the principal is supported through appropriate governance implementation

  • establishing robust processes for dealing with complaints and ensuring induction of new trustees supports effective succession.

3 Sustainable performance and self review

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

The school is not yet well placed to sustain and continue to improve and review its performance. Contributing factors are:

  • the ongoing need to build leadership of learning capabilities

  • several areas of non-compliance

  • the need to develop effective governance processes and practices.

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.

During the course of the review, ERO identified the following areas of non-compliance. In order to address these, the board of trustees must:

  • adopt a statement on the delivery of the health curriculum including sexuality education
    [s91 Education and Training Act 2020]
  • review, develop and implement procedures and practices to meet the requirements of the Health and Safety in Work Act 2015
    [Health and Safety in Work Act 2015]
  • ensure all staff employed have a current police vet
    [s 104 Education and Training Act 2020]
  • undertake sufficient identity checks on the appointment of staff.
    [Children’s Act 2014]

To improve practice the board of trustees needs to:

  • review current procedures alongside new policies to improve practice and accountability

  • have fuller records of meetings, including accountability for meeting legislative requirements and that are documented

  • develop appropriate in-committee processes, including accurate recording of and responses to complaints

  • review and improve financial practices at governance and leadership levels

  • ensure financial processes are understood and implemented.

4 Recommendations

Recommendations, including any to other agencies for ongoing or additional support.

ERO recommends that the Secretary for Education considers intervention under section 171 of the Education and Training Act 2020 in order to bring about improvements in governance, personnel and finance.

Conclusion

Te Mahoe School has made positive progress in relation to aspects of school improvement. Collaborative relationships and reflective practice are enhancing teaching and learning programmes. A sustained focus on improving leadership for learning, growing effective governance processes and practices and prioritising the understanding and use of internal evaluation is needed to improve outcomes for learners.

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

ERO will maintain an ongoing relationship with the school to build capacity and evaluate progress.

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.

Phil Cowie

Director Review and Improvement Services (Central)

Central Region - Te Tai Pūtahi Nui

22 January 2021

About the school

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

Te Mahoe School - 20/04/2018

School Context

Te Mahoe School, located in the area of Lake Matahina, south-west of Whakatane, is a small full-primary school providing education for students in Years 1 to 8. All current students are of Māori descent.

Trustees set targets focused on accelerating the achievement of all students achieving below or well below national expectations in reading, writing and mathematics. The school’s mission statement commits to growing socially, academically and spiritually with whānau, hapū and iwi. The school values respect, excellence, perseverance, and self-control.

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

  • reading, writing and mathematics.

Since the previous ERO review in 2015, a new first-time principal has been appointed. The school board is comprised of recently appointed trustees, except the chairperson, who is an experienced board member. The principal is a teaching principal and has a full-time second teacher and a part-time principal-release teacher. The school is structured into two classes: a junior class for students from Years 1 to 4, and a senior class for students from Years 5 to 8.

Teachers have undertaken recent professional development in literacy and play-based learning. New initiatives identified by the school for 2018 are the implementation of collaborative teaching and play-based learning.

The school is part of the Rangitaiki/Kawerau Community of Learning|Kāhui Ako (CoL).

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 excellent outcomes for all students. The school’s achievement data from 2016 to 2017 shows the majority of students are achieving at or above expected levels in reading, writing and mathematics. There is no significant disparity between boys and girls.

Achievement levels in mathematics have remained consistent, while achievement in reading has decreased over time for both boys and girls. Boys have improved in their achievement in writing. However, girls’ achievement in writing has decreased.

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

The school is yet to respond well to all students whose learning and achievement need acceleration. Teachers can show accelerated progress for a small number of at-risk students in writing. Leaders are yet to analyse and report school-wide data to show rates of progress over time.

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?

School leadership is collaborative and inclusive. There is a strong culture of cooperation and trust with staff and the board of trustees. The principal is participating in appropriate professional learning and mentoring to support her in her role and has accessed professional development to strengthen school-wide teacher capability.

The curriculum is responsive to Māori language, culture, and identity. There is intentional inclusion of karakia, waiata, and kapa haka opportunities in daily school activity, and the use of te reo Māori by teachers and students is naturally integrated into class routines. The school has identified ways to further strengthen links with the community and local Māori history. A strong sense of whanaungatanga and family in the school is visible in the tuakana-teina relationships in the classrooms and school grounds. Teachers have positive relationships with the students. They know the students well, and plan collaboratively to support student learning and progress.

Teachers have established strong relationships with parents. Deliberate strategies support positive partnerships for learning. Student progress reports include ways parents can help their children learn at home. The principal engages in whānau hui, and teachers provide personalised information and communication to parents. Parents and whānau are highly supportive of the school, teachers, and principal and they value the culture and positive relationships within the school.

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

The management and use of student achievement information requires strengthening. Teachers need to analyse and report data to show rates of progress for individual students and be able to respond to school-wide achievement trends and patterns.

Internal evaluation processes need to be developed and implemented. Leaders and teachers need to evaluate the effectiveness of their teaching practices and the impacts of school initiatives to accelerate learning.

There is a need to further develop understanding of teaching strategies to meet the learning needs of every student. These include:

  • the effective use of differentiation in multi-level classes
  • the further development of rich learning opportunities to engage students at risk of not achieving
  • the use of formative assessment practice to develop students’ understanding of their learning and next steps.

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

During the course of the review, ERO identified several areas of non-compliance. In order to address this, the board of trustees must:

  1. Provide students in Years 7 and 8 with appropriate career education and guidance. [Section 77 Education Act 1989; NAG 1(f)]

  2. Develop policy and procedures for prohibiting the use of force. [s 139A Ed Act 1989]

  3. Develop policy and procedures for the prevention of sexual harassment. [ss 62, 68 Human Rights Act 1993; ss 108, 117, 118 Employment Relations Act 2000]

  4. Develop policy and procedures for the surrender and retention of property and searches of students. [sections 139AAA to 139AAH Education Act 1989]

Areas for improved compliance practice

To improve current practice, the board of trustees should:

  • develop documented procedures and systems for the management, recording and administering of medicine

  • develop practices to support cross-cultural awareness

  • develop procedures for dealing with parents who are subject to court orders affecting day-to-day care of, or contact with, a child at school [NAG 5]

  • strengthen documentation to include bullying prevention and response.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • a collaborative school culture that supports students and parents

  • participation in ongoing professional learning that is necessary for continuous improvement

  • acknowledgement of the place and presence of Māori that promotes students’ sense of belonging.

Next steps

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

  • establishing processes to promote effective internal evaluation of teaching and learning

  • embedding successful teaching strategies to accelerate learning and raise overall levels of achievement

  • implementing robust systems and processes to effectively govern the school.

Recommendations to other agencies

ERO recommends that the Ministry of Education and New Zealand School Trustees Association consider providing support for the school in order to bring about improvement in:

  • the capability of trustees, leadership and teachers to use internal evaluation processes and practices to support accelerated learning

  • the increased capability of teachers to select and utilise effective teaching strategies to accelerate and extend the learning of students

  • the development and implementation of policies and procedures to meet all legislative requirements.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

ERO intends to carry out a process of ongoing external evaluation to support development over the course of one-to-two years.

Lynda Pura-Watson

Deputy Chief Review Officer

Te Tai Miringa - Waikato / Bay of Plenty Region

20 April 2018

About the school

Location

Lake Matahina, Whakatane

Ministry of Education profile number

2009

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 – 8)

School roll

38

Gender composition

Girls 21 Boys 17

Ethnic composition

Māori 38

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

February 2018

Date of this report

20 April 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review June 2015
Education Review May 2013
Education Review November 2010