Bohally Intermediate

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School Context

Bohally Intermediate provides education for students in Years 7 and 8. The school roll is 483 and is becoming increasingly ethnically diverse.

The Marlborough Technology Centre, which is on site, is managed by the school. It provides extensive technology educational options for Year 7 and 8 students from across the Marlborough region.

Since the 2014 ERO review, a new principal and senior leadership team have been appointed. Most other staff are experienced and long serving. Leaders and teachers have participated in Ministry of Education supported professional learning and development initiatives, including Accelerated Learning in Mathematics (ALIM) and Positive Behaviour for Learning (PB4L). The board is made up of new and experienced trustees and has recently introduced a shared chair role to support succession planning.

The school’s overarching vision is for all students to maximise their potential. The school’s vision and values actively promote knowledge and understanding of ako, resilience and respect. The valued outcomes for students are based on:

  • communication

  • thinking critically

  • demonstrating citizenship

  • showing character

  • being creative

  • being collaborative.

Current strategic goals and targets focus on achieving educational success, improving student engagement and ensuring meaningful connections with the school’s wider community and networks.

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

  • progress and achievement in reading, writing and mathematics for all students

  • how well students with additional learning needs are progressing

  • developments towards meeting the school’s student achievement targets and goals

  • student learning and engagement across all areas of the New Zealand Curriculum.

The board and senior leaders have responded positively to the identified areas for development in the 2014 ERO report. There has been significant improvement in the analysis of information reported to the board. The school’s strategic plan has been refined and the targets are now specific. There have been extensive developments in the school’s curriculum documentation.

The school is a member of the Piritahi Kāhui Ako | Community of Learning (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 making very good progress towards achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for its students.

2017 achievement information shows that:

  • most students achieve curriculum expectations in reading, writing and mathematics

  • there is some disparity for boys in writing that leaders are aware of and are responding appropriately to

  • Māori students achieve curriculum expectations, and the majority make significant progress during their time at the school.

Leaders and teachers have a strong focus on ensuring increased student engagement and attendance. This supports high levels of achievement which are maintained. School information shows that most students achieve at or above national expectations in reading, writing and mathematics by the end of Year 8.

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

The school is very successful in responding to those students whose learning and achievement need acceleration.

The school’s learning information shows that most target students make very good progress. Many students make accelerated progress to reach curriculum expectations by the end of Year 8. There are high levels of support for students who require additional help with their learning. Teachers have thorough processes for identifying, monitoring and tracking the learning and progress of these students. They have an ongoing, relentless focus on raising achievement levels.

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?

The school’s processes and practices are extremely effective in enabling the achievement of equity and excellence. The highly inclusive focus on individual students’ identity promotes a strong sense of belonging. Leaders and teachers know students very well and are responsive to their individual needs and strengths. Students’ individual cultures and languages are genuinely valued, encouraged and supported.

School values are clearly visible and well known. They are enacted within practices across the school and are closely aligned to the school’s identified key priorities.

Students are provided with a broad and varied curriculum that is well-considered and innovative. Meaningful contexts and opportunities for students to learn beyond core learning areas support their engagement. Students are well supported to know about their learning, progress and next steps. They have choice in their learning and regularly contribute to decision making about learning programmes. Good use is made of community expertise and resourcing to support learning and teaching programmes.

Strong emphasis is placed on promoting teachers’ professional learning and sharing of quality practices that support their teaching. Teachers are explicit about the specific teaching strategies they use to help students whose learning needs accelerating. Well-designed individualised plans and programmes support learning. Teachers regularly reflect on and evaluate how effectively these approaches are supporting students’ learning, progress and engagement.

Leaders and teachers work collaboratively to ensure effective practices that support positive outcomes for student learning and wellbeing. They are highly reflective about what makes the most difference to students’ learning and progress. School leaders build collective capacity to support sustained improvement. They have well-considered professional learning opportunities that are closely linked to the school’s robust appraisal process. A culture of high expectations for teaching and learning across the school supports the strong focus on continuous improvement and sustainability of good practice.

School leaders use many aspects of internal evaluation very well. The useful framework and many related processes and practices are leading to some positive outcomes for students.

The experienced board brings a range of expertise and knowledge to the governance role. Trustees are well informed about student learning, achievement and school operations. They are highly responsive to identified needs and use a wide range of information to inform their decision making to promote equitable outcomes and opportunities for all students.

The school has very strong networks with other schools which enable the sharing of knowledge and expertise, and support effective transitions into and beyond the school. Leaders and teachers build learning partnerships with parents and whānau and effectively communicate about the learning and progress of their children.

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

To further enhance equity and excellence, leaders and teachers should sustain and build on existing good practices by embedding:

  • recent curriculum developments

  • internal evaluation practices to continue to focus ongoing positive outcomes for learning and teaching.

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.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • the rich and meaningful learning contexts that support student learning and engagement

  • high expectations for teaching and learning

  • collaborative approaches and sharing of best practices within and beyond the school.

Next steps

For sustained improvement and future learner success, priorities for further development are embedding curriculum developments and extending internal evaluation practices.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Alan Wynyard

Director Review & Improvement Services

For Chief Review Officer

Te Waipounamu - Southern Region

20 September 2018

About the school

Location

Blenheim

Ministry of Education profile number

2812

School type

Intermediate (Years 7 to 8)

School roll

483

Gender composition

Boys 53% : Girls 47%

Ethnic composition

Māori 21%

Pākehā 66%

Asian 4%

Other ethnicities 9%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)

Yes

Provision of Māori medium education

No

Review team on site

August 2018

Date of this report

20 September 2018

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review October 2014

Education Review October 2011

Education Review May 2009

Findings

Over the last three years the board and school leaders have introduced some significant school initiatives. Teaching programmes and practices now help students to achieve very well. Students experience a rich and varied range of learning opportunities. The school actively fosters students' wellbeing.

The school is in a very good position to sustain and improve its performance. The board and school leaders are clear about the next steps they will take to bring about further school improvement.

1 Context

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

Bohally Intermediate has a large campus with an extensive range of facilities and resources. Recent developments have improved the outdoor areas and created a more attractive school environment for students. Staff make very good use of the environment, facilities and resources to support and extend students’ learning.

The Marlborough Technology Centre is part of the school. The centre provides technology programmes for students at this school and 16 other local schools.

The school continues to offer additional opportunities for students who want to extend their interests in te reo and tikanga Maori through its Te Aroha o te Whānau programme.

The board, leaders and teachers have retained and built on the strengths identified in the school’s October 2011 ERO report. They have addressed the variety of areas for improvement identified at that time.

Since the previous ERO review, there have been changes in principal, deputy principals and teaching staff. New leaders and the staff have implemented a range of school-wide initiatives that have enhanced student progress, achievement and wellbeing.

Professional development for teachers has enhanced learning opportunities for students particularly in written language and use of information technologies. Teachers and students are making extensive use of these technologies to effectively support teaching, learning and communication.

2 Learning

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

The school makes effective use of student achievement information to make changes to programmes and practices that enhance students’ engagement and learning.

Teachers systematically gather a variety of achievement information, particularly in literacy and mathematics. The range and quality of this information helps teachers to make well-informed judgements about student achievement and progress.

Teachers make appropriate use of this information to identify and respond to the strengths, abilities and needs of individual and groups of students. For example, they use achievement information to provide additional support for selected students, adjust groupings, focus their teaching and consider the best teaching resources and practices to use.

Well-developed assessment and reporting practices result in parents (along with students) being provided with a wide range of information about their child’s achievement and progress. Personal goal setting helps students to work towards clearly identified next learning steps.

School leaders make effective use of analysed achievement information to:

  • provide informative reports about achievement to the board and community
  • establish targets and plans for raising student achievement
  • help determine the focus for professional development, learning support and use of resources.

The school has good systems in place to respond to those students with the most significant learning needs. Individual plans, inclusive practices, the way staff skills are used and use of external support all help to support students to achieve success.

Areas for review and development

School leaders should extend the analysing and reporting of student achievement and progress to include:

  • aspects of student learning beyond literacy and mathematics
  • more information about the impact of learning support interventions on student progress.

There is also scope to set more specific annual achievement targets.

3 Curriculum

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

Teaching programmes and practices are promoting and supporting students to achieve very well.

Levels of achievement have improved since the school’s 2011 ERO review. This is particularly evident in the high numbers of students achieving at or above the National Standards in reading and mathematics. Student progress in written language has been significant over the last two years.

Many students show they are becoming independent, self-motivated learners and being well prepared for their future education. A range of leadership opportunities helps them to develop the skills to initiate and contribute to school improvement. For example, several school practices and facilities have been improved through the work of student leaders.

Teachers foster and enrich students’ learning through the broad and varied range of learning opportunities they provide. They take into account student interests and give appropriate attention to making learning real and meaningful for them. This is helping to motivate students and engage them in learning.

Worthwhile curriculum initiatives strongly linked to the school’s vision for promoting 'powerful learning' is helping to enhance the quality of programmes and teaching practices.

Teachers are making increasingly consistent use of teaching practices that are known to foster student achievement and progress. For example:

  • teaching is well planned, focused and adapted in response to students’ emerging needs
  • students are clear about what they are expected to learn, assess their own learning and get regular feedback from teachers
  • teachers questioning, prompting and support often help to extend students’ thinking and foster independence
  • teachers regularly reflect upon and make ongoing improvements to aspects of their practices and programmes.

A recent school survey showed a high proportion of students enjoy coming to school.

A positive school culture provides a learning environment that helps to promote student learning and wellbeing. Positive relationships and the active promotion of the school’s values create an environment where students can focus on their learning and are willing to try new things to extend themselves. Pastoral care practices help to promote students’ sense of wellbeing.

Area for review and development

School leaders have identified, and ERO confirmed, that the school’s documented curriculum guidelines need updating and extending to help consolidate and build on recent developments.

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

The board and school leaders show a strong commitment to working positively with Māori students and their families/whanaū and community, and to integrating biculturalism in ways that support success for Māori as Māori. For example:

  • Māori students’ sense of wellbeing and pride is actively promoted through supportive relationships, the status of school’s kapa haka group and the use teachers make of students’ cultural knowledge
  • students can choose to be part of the school’s Te Aroha o te Whanaū programme that gives them good opportunities to extend their interests in te reo and tikanga Māori
  • leaders place high expectations on students and their families in regard to involvement and support of the whānau programme to help maximise its success.

Analysed achievement information shows that Māori students achieve above their peers nationally in reading, writing and mathematics and slightly below their peers at this school.

Areas for review and development

The school has identified clear next steps to build on their work to promote Māori success and foster biculturalism. ERO agrees with their priorities which include further incorporating te ao Māori into the school’s curriculum and extending procedures for reporting on the effectiveness of the Te Aroha o te Whānau programme.

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

A variety of factors help to promote success for Pacific students. As well as providing an inclusive school culture, initiatives such as the student-led Pacific Club help students to both affirm and learn more about their own culture. Pacific families and students were actively supported through a Computer in Homes project. Learning support makes good provision for those who are English language learners.

4 Sustainable Performance

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

The school is in a very good position to sustain and improve its performance. The leadership of the principal fosters a shared commitment to the school’s vision and places high expectations on students and staff. He and his senior leadership team work well together and demonstrate a strong commitment to ongoing school improvement. Staff confirmed that the school culture fosters significant levels of collaboration and support among their peers.

School leaders delegate responsibilities in ways that make good use of staff strengths and interests, support school development and provide a variety of leadership opportunities for staff. Staff with leadership responsibilities are well supported, through professional development, to enhance their leadership skills.

Significant provision is made for the ongoing professional development of staff. This professional development includes a good variety of activities both within and beyond the school and makes use of a variety of resource people. The impact of professional learning is particularly evident in improved learning and teaching in written language. Reflective practices are becoming very well established and staff appraisal practices provide useful feedback to teachers.

Leaders and teachers undertake a range of self reviews that help them to evaluate aspects of teaching programmes and practices. The principal is taking appropriate steps to make sure that increased use is made of review findings to support ongoing school improvement.

The board performs its governance role well. The board and senior leaders work in partnership to achieve shared goals. Principal reports help to ensure the board has the information it needs to make well-informed decisions. The board (with the help of funds raised by a parent group) provides significant financial support for additional staffing, professional development and ongoing additions to teaching resources.

Parent surveys indicate that relationships between parents and the school are positive and that there is increasing awareness and support for the school’s vision and work. Relationships and communication with other schools support students’ smooth transition into and from the school.

Area for review and development

Over the last three years in particular, the board, leaders and teachers have implemented a range of initiatives that have helped to promote significant school improvements.

The board and school leaders are aware of the importance of making sure a good balance is achieved between maintaining the best of existing practices, consolidating and building on recent initiatives and introducing further change. Some refinements to strategic and annual plans would help to achieve such a balance.

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.

Recommendations

The board should extend its ongoing programme of self review to include periodic surveys of staff, for example to help it evaluate how well the board is meeting its good employer obligations.

Conclusion

Over the last three years the board and school leaders have introduced some significant school initiatives. Teaching programmes and practices now help students to achieve very well. Students experience a rich and varied range of learning opportunities. The school actively fosters students' wellbeing.

The school is in a very good position to sustain and improve its performance. The board and school leaders are clear about the next steps they will take to bring about further school improvement.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the school again?

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

Graham Randell

National Manager Review Services Southern Region

14 October 2014

About the School

Location

Blenheim

Ministry of Education profile number

2812

School type

Intermediate (Years 7 to 8)

School roll

350

Gender composition

Girls 53% Boys 47%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

Māori

Pacific

Asian

Other Ethnicities

73%

21%

2%

3%

1%

Special Features

Marlborough Technology Centre located at the school

Review team on site

September 2014

Date of this report

14 October 2014

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

October 2011

May 2009

December 2007