Lytton High School

Education institution number:
208
School type:
Secondary (Year 9-15)
School gender:
Co-Educational
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
628
Telephone:
Address:

347 Nelson Road, Gisborne

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Lytton High School - 27/07/2018

Findings

Trustees, leaders and teachers are focused on raising student achievement. Specific teaching and learning initiatives, including professional development for staff and increasing student voice, have the potential for continuing improvement. Ongoing evaluation of the impact of approaches and strategies is a key next step.

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

1 Background and Context

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

Lytton High School is located in Gisborne and caters for students in Years 9 to 15. At the time of this ERO review, 77% of students on the roll are Māori.

The June 2016 ERO report identified concerns relating to the curriculum, student achievement and use of achievement information. Also identified for improvement were policies, procedures and practices, including internal evaluation, to promote ongoing school improvement.

ERO, trustees, leaders and staff developed an improvement plan that aligned to the school’s strategic and annual plans. Over the past two years, leaders and trustees have worked with ERO to report on and evaluate progress towards meeting the identified goals.

In 2016 and 2017, the school led its own professional development on Positive Behaviours for Learning (PB4L), restorative practices and effective teaching strategies. In 2018, the school is participating in professional development led by an external facilitator focused on continuing to build teacher capability to improve student outcomes.

2 Review and Development

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

Priorities identified for review and development

In June 2016, the following development priorities were agreed:

  • a curriculum that accelerates achievement, built on effective evaluation
  • a systematic approach to the use of quality data and analysis to inform practice, leading to improved targeted outcomes
  • the development of practices, policies and procedures that promote ongoing school improvement by trustees and school leaders.

Good progress has been made in relation to these priorities.

Progress

Roll-based overall National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) results have increased significantly in Levels 2 and 3 between 2016 and 2017. Level 1 results decreased and in 2018 the school has increased academic tracking of those students at risk of not achieving at level 1. The curriculum has been adapted to increase the potential for student success. In 2017 at Levels 2 and 3, students at this school achieved at and above those in similar schools nationally. Approximately half of target students in Years 9 and 10 made accelerated progress in literacy in 2017.

Since June 2016, a number of curriculum developments have had a positive impact on student engagement and achievement.

Learning Advisories were strengthened at the end of 2016. These:

  • provide for timetabled, twice - weekly meetings of the adviser and groups of students
  • enable increased tracking of students’ academic progress through the use of newly-developed individual student tracking booklets
  • support students to make choices and be well informed about their courses
  • give opportunities for students to work collaboratively to support one another as tuakana teina.

The school’s focus on student wellbeing has been enhanced through the PB4L programme and emphasis on the school’s three values: Ako, Aroha and Aspire. Wellbeing lessons have been introduced as part of Learning Advisories.

Teachers and leaders have increased contact with whānau in a range of ways. The use of a portal provides parents and students an online platform to share updated information about student effort and academic progress.

A deliberate, increased emphasis on seeking student voice has resulted in students having increased knowledge about their own learning, and more opportunities to make choices. Teachers adapt courses to meet students’ interests and needs.

Observations of teaching and learning show that students are well engaged within relevant, authentic contexts. Teachers share the purpose of lessons and support students to understand what they need to do to be successful. Learning conversations are evident.

Student attendance is closely tracked, monitored and scrutinised. This was a schoolwide target for 2017. In 2018, there is an increased emphasis on attendance in Year 12.

Students at risk of not achieving are identified and their learning is targeted. A number of specific interventions have been implemented to raise student achievement. These include literacy programmes for Year 9 students and a closer focus on tracking students’ progress towards achieving NCEA. This information is reported at each board meeting. Teachers have begun to increase their analysis of achievement information. This is an identified, ongoing next step.

The introduction of semesters has increased the variety and choice of educational opportunities for students. A positive result of this initiative is increased NCEA credit acquisition. Other new developments include the introduction of faculty plans that focus on raising student achievement.

Teachers follow a well-structured process to inquire into their practice. This should enable them to increase the impact of their teaching on improved outcomes for students. Next steps are for teachers to:

  • be clear about the new strategies and changes they are introducing to their practice
  • use research and shared expertise to inform their decision making
  • fully document the process.

Leaders should increase monitoring of the quality and consistency of the inquiry process.

3 Sustainable performance and self review

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

To sustain and continue to improve the school’s performance, leaders have identified that embedding new practices is a priority. ERO's external evaluation supports this direction.

Since 2016, trustees have undertaken governance training. They regularly discuss progress towards the school’s strategic and annual goals. The principal reports on student achievement, including for groups of students, and reports on staffing and health and safety matters.

Trustees and leaders should place increased emphasis on meeting deadlines for sending key information at specified times to meet board obligations.

The appraisal process requires development. This should include:

  • ensuring that all aspects of the school’s appraisal policy are fully implemented and documented
  • introducing a revised summary evidence sheet to give a clear overview as a record of endorsement.

Trustees and leaders have taken part in an internal evaluation workshop and have begun to use a suitable framework to evaluate the effectiveness of new initiatives. A next step is to develop a shared understanding across the school to inform decision making as teachers, leaders and trustees continue to focus on raising student achievement.

The school’s initiatives and programmes have the potential for further improving student outcomes. Trustees, leaders and teachers should evaluate the impact of approaches and strategies to ascertain their impact and effectiveness.

Key next steps

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

the use of well analysed data from a range of sources, for internal evaluation that identifies what is working well for students' learning and where improvements are needed.

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

Trustees, leaders and teachers are focused on raising student achievement. Specific teaching and learning initiatives, including professional development for staff and increasing student voice, have the potential for continuing improvement. Ongoing evaluation of the impact of approaches and strategies is a key next step.

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

Alan Wynyard

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central (Acting)

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

27 July 2018

About the School

Location

Gisborne

Ministry of Education profile number

208

School type

Secondary (Years 9 to 15)

School roll

690

Gender composition

Male 51%, Female 49%

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Pacific
Other ethnic groups

77%
20%
1%
2%

Special Features

Te Whare Whai Hua – Teen Parent Unit Te Wheako – Attached Unit: Special Needs Alternative Education

Review team on site

May 2018

Date of this report

27 July 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review
Education Review
Education Review

June 2016
December 2012
May 2011

Lytton High School - 24/06/2016

Findings

Lytton High School is continuing to develop curriculum provision for engaging students and fostering success. There is need for urgency in establishing a systematic, coherent approach to accelerating learning and to knowing how well actions impact on achievement. The culture is caring and inclusive.

ERO intends to carry out another review over the course of one-to-two years.

1 Context

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

Lytton High School is located in Gisborne and caters for students in Years 9 to 13. At the time of this ERO review, almost 80% of students on the roll identified as Māori.

The school’s reporting history includes working with ERO during 2011 and 2012 to develop to foster cultural responsiveness and relationships for learning. Leaders and trustees have consulted with the community to guide curriculum review. New structures and processes have been introduced to support learning and engagement. These serve the vision for provision of an inclusive and responsive curriculum.

Student wellbeing is supported by comprehensive structures and systems for managing physical and emotional health and fostering learning. Learning advisories provide opportunity to develop trusting relationships across year levels and with teachers.

Since the December 2012 ERO report, there have been changes of trustees, senior leaders and key support staff. All of these personnel are relatively new to their roles.

2 Learning

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

More development of data analysis, evaluation and strategic use is needed to support the approach being taken to improving learners’ engagement, progress and achievement. This should happen through leadership of:

  • in-depth data analysis of patterns and trends, and inquiry into reasons for these
  • explicit expectations for the progress and achievement of individuals and groups, including clarity about expectations for acceleration of progress over time
  • systematic monitoring and evaluation against clearly defined targets, outcomes and measures. 

These practices should be embedded by leaders, within each department and at individual teacher level, to inform planning for students’ identified needs. Taking these steps is likely to provide a coherent evidence base for knowing how well actions taken are making a positive difference to student attendance, retention, progress and achievement, for supporting the realisation of annual goals and strategic aims.

Student achievement in National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEAs) has fluctuated since the previous ERO review. Analysis of roll-based data during that time shows that senior students’ achievement levels are below national and similar school attainment rates in NCEA. Results are declining at Levels 2, 3 and for University Entrance. There is disparity between the achievement of males and females and Māori and Pākehā peers. However, data for 2013 and 2014 shows an increase in the percentage of all students, and Māori, leaving with NCEA Level 2.

Many students enter Year 9 performing below curriculum level expectations in literacy and mathematics. Strategies to address this disadvantage are making a difference for some students within one year and for more over three years, particularly in numeracy.

A slower-paced approach is taken to fostering progress for students identified as having specific learning needs or whose learning has been severely delayed. These students learn in their own groups. They transition to mainstream classes when assessments indicate readiness. Progress and achievement are monitored against the aims expressed in individual education plans or goals.

The school recognises the need for urgency in targeting needs and knowing what is working well for students to promote better success at Level 1 NCEA and beyond. This will require having specific knowledge of learning needs and patterns of achievement and progress for students in Years 9 and 10.

3 Curriculum

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

Since 2012, several initiatives have been introduced to foster student wellbeing and learning for success. Some are very recent. As yet there is little in the way of formal evaluation to indicate the extent of curriculum effectiveness overall, or for any year group. As changes become embedded, leaders should continue to seek ways to know what is working well for students, how effectiveness can be extended or enhanced, and what issues need to be addressed.

Some changes implemented are innovative and likely to increase student engagement. The 2015 review of curriculum for Year 9, is designed to help students make connections across the learning areas and contexts, while reinforcing literacy skills and understandings. Numeracy learning is integrated where appropriate. This new approach is being refined in response to survey information from staff, students and parents, and will extend to Year 10 in 2017. The baseline data gathered will be useful for monitoring any difference in student interest. Bringing attendance, behaviour, progress and achievement data to the analysis is likely to provide a more rounded picture of impact.

The senior curriculum is evolving and expanding to be responsive to the local context and students’ needs and aspirations. Good models for promoting student learning and success are evident in the work of some departments, for example, transition, English and science. A number of vocationally linked courses and pathways are designed in partnership with external agencies and providers. These options are tailored to respond to local opportunities for continued learning and training beyond school. A review of student leadership structures has resulted in a wider range of opportunities for seniors to develop these skills and share in the running of the school.

Students learn and participate in a caring, collaborative and inclusive environment, underpinned by Te Kotahitanga values and practices. Survey information indicates that participants feel the school is settled and has a sense of whānau.

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

The language, culture and identity of Māori students is upheld by the board, senior leaders and staff. Students have opportunities to show leadership and learn about their heritage and local history. Pride is fostered through role models within and outside the school.

While there is an increase in the proportion of Māori leavers attaining Level 2, Māori student attendance and achievement need to be raised to promote greater engagement and success at all year levels.

Long-term participation in a programme for making meaningful connections with whānau and communities has raised the level of parent interest in their children’s education and progress. Over two thirds of parents attended learning conferences with their children and teachers. Feedback from surveys conducted in 2015 has provided useful information for reflection and action to enhance what is going well and improve some aspects of operation. A follow-up survey is planned for this year. This is the beginning of establishing systematic data gathering for planning next steps.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

Changes introduced by leaders focus on improving conditions for learning and achievement. The principal and leadership team are working with the board to share the vision, values and goals. Management processes are aimed at building leader and teacher capability for making progress.

Staff and community ownership of the vision is encouraged through consultation about school direction. Response to views is considered carefully and communicated. As yet there is insufficient robust information to be confident about quality or effectiveness of actions taken, or to sustain and improve overall performance.

Aspects of operation needing development relate to having clarity about expectations for progress and achievement, ensuring these are sufficiently challenging, and knowing what would count as evidence of impact.

Leaders should continue to develop closer alignment and integration of systems and processes for monitoring and evaluating teacher performance, development goals, and achievement of annual targets and goals. Internal evaluation practice needs to be embedded by teachers, leaders and the board. Teachers should strengthen actions to empower students to be responsible for knowing how they are progressing and what to improve.

The board is committed to the charter vision for the development of well-balanced, responsible adults who are equipped to make a positive contribution to their community. Trustees are responsive to the information they receive. The board needs more regular, analysed information about progress toward expected outcomes, goals and targets to make decisions in students’ best interests. Continuing to take opportunities for governance training is likely to assist trustees in reflecting on and discussing implications of information reported.

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students established under section 238F of the Education Act 1989. No international students were enrolled at the time of the ERO review.

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.

The board needs to be assured that it is meeting its obligation to implement the National Administration Guidelines (NAGs). Steps have been taken to work with external support to review policies. However, trustees cannot be confident that all NAG requirements are covered in policies and procedures and that they are adequately met. Systems for managing and reporting compliance are not well developed.

The board of trustees must:

  • comply in full with any legislation currently in force to ensure the health and safety of students and employees
    [National Administration Guideline 5 (c)]
  • maintain an ongoing programme of self review in relation to policies, plans and programmes, including evaluation of student achievement.
    [National Administration Guideline 2 (b)]

To improve current practice, the board of trustees should:

  • continue to review policy provision with reference to most recent guidelines
  • ensure there are good systems for efficiently managing requirements and reporting how well policies and procedures have been implemented
  • ensure that completion of the annual performance management cycle for teachers is documented in a summary that is signed by both parties, to be assured that due processes have been carried out.

Recommendations to other agencies

ERO recommends that the Ministry of Education consider providing support for the board to establish robust governance and management systems for being assured that obligations to the National Administration Guidelines are met and good practices are implemented.

Conclusion

Lytton High School is continuing to develop curriculum provision for engaging students and fostering success. There is need for urgency in establishing a systematic, coherent approach to accelerating learning and to knowing how well actions impact on achievement. The culture is caring and inclusive.

ERO intends to carry out another review over the course of one-to-two years. 

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

24 June 2016

About the School

Location

Gisborne

Ministry of Education profile number

208

School type

Secondary (Years 9 to 15)

School roll

779

Number of international students

0

Gender composition

Female 53%, Male 47%

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Other ethnic groups

78%

19%

3%

Special Features

Te Whare Whai Hui – Teen Parent Unit Alternative Education Te Wheako – Attached Unit: Special Needs

Review team on site

April 2016

Date of this report

24 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

December 2012

May 2011

August 2008