Paparangi School

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School Context

Paparangi School in the Northern suburbs of Wellington caters for students in Years 1 to 6. At the time of this ERO review, the roll was 277 students, 16% of whom identify as Māori. An enrolment zone was established in 2018 and implemented in 2019. The roll continues to grow.

The school has a vision to ‘grow adventurous learners’. Its ‘GROW’ values (Grit, Respect, Others, Wonder) have been recently reviewed.

Current goals and targets for improvement in student outcomes are: raising achievement, design and implementation of a localised curriculum, creation of collaborative learning environments and the fostering of a healthy and active community which thinks and acts sustainably.

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
  • school culture and curriculum areas
  • wellbeing and attendance.

There have been a number of changes of staff since the September 2016 ERO review, several as a result of roll growth. A new board of trustees was established in June 2019. A new deputy principal and two assistant principals were appointed December 2019.

Professional development in 2018 and 2019 was focused on mathematics and redevelopment of the curriculum. In 2019 the focus was on the revision of school values and the development of consistent expectations for students’ behaviour.

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 working towards equitable and excellent outcomes for its students.

In 2018, almost all students achieved at or above school expectations in reading while most achieved at this level in writing and mathematics.

Overtime there has been a small increase in student achievement in reading and a small decrease in mathematics. Boys, Māori and Pacific students achieve at lower rates than girls in writing. Māori girls achieve at levels lower than Māori boys and other students in mathematics.

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

Most students make expected progress. Accelerated achievement is evident for some students in reading, writing and mathematics.

The school continues to work to identify and implement effective practices and processes to promote equity of outcomes for all learners. This is reflected through actions that focus on continuous improvement. Leaders and teachers are developing better systems for the effective tracking of student achievement outcomes.

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?

Staff work collaboratively with parents and specialist staff to provide effective support for students with high and complex needs. The learning support coordinators are highly aware of these children and share information about their needs with teaching teams. The progress of English language learners is regularly monitored, and programmes adjusted accordingly. Teacher assistants are highly valued for the support they provide for individuals and class programmes.

Leaders strongly support the school’s direction to achieve its revised vision, values and strategic goals. They have introduced new learning environments and teaching practices to improve student outcomes. Clear and consistent social expectations are being developed through implementation of the new schoolwide values.

The school is at a beginning stage of redeveloping a local curriculum. This includes guidelines for delivery and content. Teachers are developing ways to adapt the delivery of the curriculum to make it more authentic and engaging for students.

An environmental focus continues to be central to learning contexts and activities. STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics) and play-based learning practices were introduced in 2018 to support students to have more ownership of their learning. An increased emphasis on oral language has been introduced to improve reading and writing levels. It is too early to assess the impact of these initiatives on student outcomes.

A review of the assessment schedule, including reporting of each student’s achievement to parents, was completed in 2019. This gives useful guidance on progress and achievement.

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

The school’s local curriculum is currently being reviewed and updated to reflect the revised vision for learning. Completion and documentation of this, in consultation with families and the community, is a key next step to sustain improvements to teaching and assessment practices.

Leaders, trustees and teachers are reflective and seeking to understand the impact of initiatives on practice and student outcomes. They are developing their understanding of evaluation and inquiry and the importance of ensuring these processes are purposeful, systematic and coherent. Further development of inquiry and evaluation to support better measurement of the impact of initiatives and curriculum actions is a next step.

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 Children’s Act 2014.

4 ERO’s Overall Judgement

On the basis of the findings of this review, ERO’s overall evaluation judgement of Paparangi School’s performance in achieving valued outcomes for its students is: Developing.

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.

5 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • support for students’ with additional needs that promotes improved outcomes
  • reflective practices that seek to determine the impact of initiatives on student outcomes.

Next steps

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

  • development tracking systems to strengthen the monitoring of at-risk learners
  • strengthening of inquiry and evaluation practices to better measure the impact of initiatives
  • completion of the documentation of the school’s updated curriculum to provide clear expectations for teaching and learning.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified non-compliance in relation to consultation on delivery of the health curriculum.

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

  • comply with the requirement to adopt a statement on the delivery of the health curriculum at least once every two years, after consultation with the school community. Section 60B Education Act 1989.

Since the on-site stage the board has taken steps to address this.

Dr Lesley Patterson

Director Review and Improvement Services Te Tai Tini

Southern Region

17 March 2020

About the school



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll


Gender composition

Male 58%, Female 42%

Ethnic composition

Māori 16%
NZ European/Pākehā 49%
Asian 17%
Indian 7%
Pacific 4%
Other ethnic groups 7%

Students with Ongoing Resourcing Funding (ORS)


Provision of Māori medium education


Review team on site

October 2019

Date of this report

17 March 2020

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review September 2016
Education Review November 2013

1 Context

Paparangi School in northern Wellington caters for students from Years 1 to 6. Of the 216 students attending the school 15% identify as Māori, 12% as Asian and 5% as Pacific. A new principal was appointed at the beginning of 2016. A new board of trustees was elected in the recent elections. The school is experiencing significant roll growth, particularly in the junior school, as new housing developments occur in the area. A block of classrooms has been refurbished to create a more flexible learning space for the junior students. Outdoor developments include the creation of an adventure zone.

2 Equity and excellence

The vision and valued outcomes defined by the school for all children are that they will be:

  • resilient, empowered and confident students
  • respectful of themselves, others and the environment
  • able to relate well to others
  • active seekers and users of knowledge.

The four core values of care, courtesy, respect and responsibilityare highly evident throughout the school. Involvement in Enviroschools has continued to be an integral part of learning and the school now holds a Green Gold award.

School achievement information shows that the majority of students achieve at or above in relation to National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics.

Many Māori students achieve well. Staff continue to focus on their achievement and that of boys, for parity with school peers. Pacific students are individually tracked and achieve at or above in relation to National Standards expectations.

In making their writing judgements about how well students achieve in relation to National Standards, teachers regularly moderate in staff and syndicate meetings. The process for making judgements is appropriately documented. Teachers are revising guidelines in literacy and mathematics to ensure consistency across the school. A next step is to moderate all National Standards judgements and to include partnership with other schools as part of this development. 

Since the previous ERO evaluation the school has:

  • increased the focus on targeted students
  • strengthened the appraisal process
  • provided professional development to increase teacher knowledge and confidence in

te reo me ngā tikanga Māori

  • enhanced the use of digital technologies to support teaching and learning
  • increasingly supported children to have greater ownership of their learning
  • recently redefined practices that respond to children with special education needs
  • been involved in professional development on the teaching of writing
  • strengthened reporting to parents and introduced student led workshops.

Many of these developments are ongoing and are in the process of being embedded.

3 Accelerating achievement

How effectively does this school respond to Māori children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

National Standards data shows that most Māori students who are below expectations make accelerated progress during their time in the school. Teachers, leaders and the board are aware of the individual Māori students whose achievement requires acceleration and are working collaboratively to support their progress. School leaders are instrumental in keeping these students’ learning needs and progress at the forefront of teacher inquiry through ‘Poutama’ (learning steps). Tracking and monitoring systems in literacy and mathematics are accompanied by a focus on actions and interventions to support positive learning outcomes.

An identified next step is to forge stronger links with the whānau of Māori students. The board has a strategic goal to continue to improve outcomes for Māori children through:

  • building partnerships with whānau and the Māori community
  • strengthening culturally responsive teaching practice
  • continuing to support te ao Māori practices throughout the school. 

How effectively does this school respond to other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The learning and achievement of all students who are below in relation to National Standards is tracked and monitored. The board of trustees receives regular updates on the progress of children at risk of not achieving equitable outcomes.

Students with special learning needs are well identified. A range of interventions are in place to support their learning and progress. The special education needs coordinator is being effectively supported in her role.

4 School conditions

How effectively do the school’s curriculum and other organisational processes and practices develop and enact the school’s vision, values, goals and targets for equity and excellence?

Trustees have undertaken appropriate training to assist understanding of their roles and responsibilities in relation to governance and management. Transition from one board to the next has been well considered. Effective systems, including regular policy and procedure review, ensure the school meets its statutory requirements.

Trustees receive increasingly detailed and useful student achievement information to effectively support their decision making. Comprehensive reporting includes regular updates on target students and progress toward annual goals.

The quality of internal evaluation capacity is being built across the school. Continuing to build this across a range of school practices is an ongoing next step.

The principal works collaboratively with teachers to review and enhance current school practices. Leadership capacity is being developed across the staff. The leadership team is strengthening teacher capability to respond effectively to students' learning needs.

Teachers are continuing to inquire into the effectiveness of their teaching strategies. They have increased their focus on how well they are supporting students whose achievement requires acceleration, in order for them to be well prepared for intermediate and secondary schooling. Teachers are developing their approach to more consistently use assessment information to inform their teaching. Continuing this deliberate focus and considering the impact of the strategies they use is likely to bring about further improvement.

A range of appropriate and effective strategies is used to communicate with and engage parents in their children’s learning. Through reporting, parents know how well their children are achieving and progressing. The school and community work together to support students to make effective transitions into the school.

The learning environment effectively supports sustained student engagement and progress. Students are confident, enthusiastic learners. They are given choices and are increasingly
self-directed in their learning. Teachers have identified the need to continue to assist students to have greater ownership of their learning.

Clear expectations, respectful relationships and well established routines contribute to a calm and positive tone in classrooms. A bicultural perspective is evident.

The school has identified that it is timely to evaluate their local curriculum so that current teaching and learning expectations, practices and future priorities are better reflected. ERO's evaluation affirms this step.

The development of the outdoor adventure zone has created a variety of opportunities for students to be challenged, problem solve, manage risks and be involved in cooperative and creative play. Children state that they enjoy these experiences. 

Appraisal processes have been strengthened to more effectively contribute to teacher improvement. Expectations and guidelines for good practice have been clarified, and implementation of these monitored. A next step is to ensure that teachers’ goals are measurable and directly linked to improving student outcomes.

5 Going forward  

How well placed is the school to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it?

Leaders and teachers:  

  • know the children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated
  • respond effectively to the strengths, needs and interests of each child
  • regularly evaluate how well teaching is working for these children
  • act on what they know works well for each child
  • build teacher capability effectively to achieve equitable outcomes for all children
  • are well placed to achieve and sustain equitable and excellent outcomes for all children.

The school is refining and continuing to develop systems and practices to ensure there is an increased focus on successfully improving student outcomes.

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

6 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 the following:

  • board administration
  • curriculum
  • management of health, safety and welfare
  • personnel management
  • 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
  • processes for appointing staff
  • stand down, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions
  • attendance
  • compliance with the provisions of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014. 

7 Recommendation

ERO's external evaluation affirms the school's focus on accelerating student progress. Trustees, leaders and teachers should continue to embed processes and further develop internal evaluation to support strategic direction and inform improvement. 

Joyce Gebbie
Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

21 September 2016

About the school



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Contributing (Years 1 to 6)

School roll


Gender composition

Male 55%, Female 45%

Ethnic composition

Other ethnic groups


Review team on site

August 2016

Date of this report

21 September 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review
Education Review
Education Review

November 2013
August 2010
June 2007