Napier Boys' High School

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Education institution number:
School type:
Secondary (Year 9-15)
School gender:
Single Sex (Boys School)
School with Boarding Facilities
Total roll:

31 Chambers Street, Napier

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ERO Hostel Report


The Chief Review Officer has the authority to carry out reviews (which may be general or in relation to particular matters) of the provision of a safe physical and emotional environment that supports learning for students accommodated in hostels under section 470 of the Education and Training Act 2020. This function is delegated to review officers who have the powers to enter and carry out review of hostels under section 472 of the Act.


The hostel manager and the hostel owner have attested in the Hostel Assurance Statement that they meet the requirements of the Hostel Regulations 2005.

The school boarding house, Scinde House, accommodates up to 195 students, with a current roll of 169 students. It is owned by the Napier Boys’ High School board of trustees. The boarding house comprises of five dormitories that accommodate the different year levels from Year 9-13, situated around a central outdoor hub.

Students have a connected, supportive environment with a range of facilities that creates a sense of community and belonging. Well established systems, processes and structures support student wellbeing.  Students’ academic progress and achievement are valued and promoted. Boarders spoken to by ERO acknowledge the wide range of opportunities they have, to participate in both school-based and off-site activities. Opportunities are provided for students to take personal responsibility and leadership roles. Students and whānau provide regular feedback about the boarding house, including relationships. This feedback is responded to and considered in forward planning for improvement. The school is taking all reasonable steps to provide a safe physical and emotional environment that supports students’ learning.

Shelley Booysen
Acting Director Review and Improvement Services (Central)
Central Region | Te Tai Pūtahi Nui

15 December 2021

About the School

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


Napier Boys’ High School caters for a range of academic, vocational, sporting and cultural interests. Achievement in NCEAs is above national and similar school rates. Significant changes for enhancing school performance are being developed. Building capability for working with data to inform evaluation and review is a key area for development.

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?

Napier Boys’ High School is a long-established secondary school in Hawke's Bay for boarders and day boys in Years 9 to 13. Traditional values include honesty, respect and self-discipline and are enacted in guiding day-to-day relationships.

At the time of this ERO review, there were 1171 students enrolled and 173 resided in Scinde House, the school’s boarding hostel. About 25% of the roll identified as Māori. An additional 35 students were international fee-paying or exchange students.

Since the November 2013 ERO report, there have been significant changes of personnel. These include the appointment of a new headmaster in 2016 and a new senior manager in 2015. The newly elected board of trustees is leading the review of the strategic plan to set school direction for the next three years.

The property is large and includes a farm, vineyard, planetarium and community high school. Grounds and facilities are attractively presented and maintained well. A substantial rebuild is planned and this will provide for changing approaches to teaching and learning.

The school is part of the Napier City Community of Schools. Together the schools have set goals to raise student achievement in literacy, numeracy and science, and facilitate smooth transitions for fostering student success.

2 Learning

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

Overall, a large majority of senior students achieve the National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEAs) Levels 1, 2 and 3. Results are above schools nationally and for schools of a similar type.

Trend data for the past three years indicates there have been some small improvements in the achievement of certain groups. However, Māori student performance has been consistently below that of Pākehā peers, with the difference increasing at Level 3.

The achievement of Pacific and Asian students is monitored each year. Improving the achievement of Māori students, and raising the proportion of merit and excellence certificate endorsements in NCEA overall, are ongoing focus areas.

Leaders and teachers collect and reflect on a wide range of data across the year groups and learning areas. Assessment information is used to place students in classes at Years 9 and 10, to inform teaching programmes and monitor progress.

Students identified as having greater literacy and numeracy learning needs receive targeted and additional support for developing skills and understandings. The school’s tracking information indicates these strategies are assisting those who remain in the school to achieve NCEA Level 1.

To increase student engagement, progress and achievement, leaders should enhance schoolwide capability for in-depth analysis and effective use of relevant information to better:

  • inform strategic direction, annual planning, targets and resourcing
  • identify and respond to individual student strengths and needs
  • support teachers to inquire into and develop practice
  • track, monitor and respond to what is known about the progress of individuals, groups and cohorts
  • evaluate the impact of teaching and learning, and innovations, on student outcomes.

Strengthening data literacy is likely to assist with accelerating student progress and achievement, as expected in the annual targets and goals.

3 Curriculum

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

The curriculum provides opportunities for most students to achieve well. They are offered a wide range of curriculum choices, making good use of facilities on and off site. The traditional values are enacted across the school and students are encouraged to strive for personal best.

ERO observed respectful interactions. Students understand what is expected of them and focus well on tasks and activities. School and classroom tone is calm, productive and supports learning. A sense of belonging is evident.

A comprehensive careers and guidance programme assists students to make informed choices for their future. From Year 9, students embark on curriculum pathways that acknowledge their strengths and interests. Course and class organisation are responsive to learning abilities and needs. Most students gain qualifications that stand them in good stead for further study or employment options.

Students are invited to share their views about curriculum provision. Teachers use data and student feedback to reflect on and adjust programmes and teaching. Individual wellbeing, learning and achievement are monitored by deans and form teachers, and response is timely.

Parents receive regular reports on their son’s engagement, progress and achievement. They have the opportunity to participate in a range of events to learn about, or be involved with, the school curriculum. Levels of attendance and survey responses indicate that these opportunities are valued.

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

Good strategies are being introduced for increasing Māori students’ engagement, retention and success in achieving qualifications.

A Whānau Rōpu has been re-established with the support of the headmaster. This group has met regularly during 2016 and assumed leadership for guiding the way forward. Since establishment, interest and numbers have grown. Members are exploring a formal relationship with the Pukemokimoki marae, with representation on the Rōpu.

The whānau group has an important role in contributing to the review of the charter and strategic plan. Māori student feedback has given valuable insights into how success for Māori as Māori can be planned for. Consideration is being given to development of the environment, curriculum and pastoral systems, so they reflect, and are responsive to, students’ cultural heritage and potential.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is well placed to sustain its performance and improve student outcomes because many positive conditions contribute to a sound platform for moving forward. Ongoing development needs to focus on improving internal evaluation processes.

Significant changes for enhancing school performance are being considered. Senior leaders and trustees are reviewing school direction, management structures and systems. These include shared expectations for effective teaching and learning, the appraisal and pastoral care systems, and delegation of associated responsibilities.

Consultation for the review of the charter and strategic plan has begun. In finalising this document, the board should be sure that the goals are expressed clearly as outcomes and can be owned by all participants.

Annual objectives and targets need to be supported with specific indicators of quality or success, to assist with monitoring at appropriate intervals and evaluation of impacts. While these processes are currently undertaken across the school, making better meaning and use of data should enrich information for reporting, evaluation and planning.

The school enjoys strong community support. Family and whānau engagement are encouraged and valued.

Provision for international students

The Education (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016 (the Code) was introduced on July 1st 2016. The school is aware of the need to update its policies and procedures to meet the new requirements.

At the time of this review there were 35 international students attending the school, including 4 exchange students.

The school has begun to align its policies and procedures to meet requirements for the 2016 Code.

Provision for students in the school hostel

The school hostel, Scinde House, accommodates 173 students, 15% of the school roll. It is owned by the Napier Boys’ High School board of trustees. The hostel owner has attested that all the requirements of the Hostel Regulations are met. Since the 2013 ERO review, there has been ongoing upgrading of the boarding facilities.

Well-developed procedures are implemented to support the physical, emotional and intellectual needs of the boarders. There is a comprehensive orientation process for Year 9 boys, including mentoring from senior boarders.

Meaningful opportunities are provided for boys to develop leadership and take responsibility. Ready access to recreation activities and facilities is valued. Feedback from boarders about hostel systems and relationships is regularly sought and responded to.

Relationships within the hostel, and between the hostel and the school, promote a positive environment that supports learning for students. Boarders spoken with by ERO valued and appreciated the supportive, family-like atmosphere. There is a consistent focus on academic progress and achievement.

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.

With the appointment of the headmaster in 2016, and the impending election of new trustees, the outgoing board conducted a stocktake of governance policies. This process helped to identify several areas for ongoing review and development. Trustees are working on addressing these in a planned way. When completed, the board should be able to evaluate how well policy intentions are met, from information reported and identify where review or action is required.


Napier Boys’ High School caters for a range of academic, vocational, sporting and cultural interests. Achievement in NCEAs is above national and similar school rates. Significant changes for enhancing school performance are being developed. Building capability for working with data to inform evaluation and review is a key area for development.

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

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

13 October 2016

About the School



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Secondary (Years 9 to 13)

School roll


Number of international students


Gender composition

Male 100%

Ethnic composition









Special Features

School boarding hostel

Review team on site

August 2016

Date of this report

13 October 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

November 2013

August 2010

June 2007