Cannington School

Cannington School

Te Ara Huarau | School Profile Report


This Profile Report was written within twelve months of the Education Review Office and Cannington School working in Te Ara Huarau, an improvement evaluation approach used in most English Medium State and State Integrated Schools. For more information about Te Ara Huarau see ERO’s website.


Cannington School is a small primary school located in Cannington, South Canterbury and caters for students in Years 1 to 8.

Cannington Schools strategic priorities for improving outcomes for learners are to:

  • obtain the highest possible level of student progress for all ages, ethnic and gender groups, teaching every student using a rich and responsive curriculum

  • enhance students’ and staff needs and progress with effective resourcing, an attractive environment and high-quality facilities

  • ensure all current and proposed practices, policies, programmes and procedures are sustainable, necessary and relevant through reflection from student, staff, board and community perspectives.

You can find a copy of the school’s strategic and annual plan on Cannington Schools website.

ERO and the school are working together to evaluate to what extent the local curriculum at Cannington School contributes to positive outcomes for students in terms of equity and excellence in achievement, well-being and engagement.

The rationale for selecting this evaluation is to:

  • foster ongoing collection of whānau and ākonga perspectives on how well the curriculum supports all students' sense of belonging and engagement in learning  

  • strengthen school-wide practices for planning, delivering, assessing and reporting on progress and achievement.

The school expects to use the outcome of the evaluation to develop a local curriculum which reflects the local context, provides a coordinated approach to teaching and learning and incorporates changes in the national curriculum. Ongoing monitoring and evaluation of achievement, valued outcomes and other indicator data will show improved student outcomes in terms of excellence and equity for all students. 


The school can draw from the following strengths to support the school in its goal to review the localised curriculum and maintain focus on achieving excellent and equitable outcomes for all students:

  • Teachers are experienced in monitoring student progress and determining next steps in a multilevel composite class environment

  • Internal evaluation practices support reflecting on the evidence of student learning and outcomes to improve practice.

Where to next?

Moving forward, the school will prioritise:

  • encouraging students, teachers and whānau to participate in curriculum design and decision making 

  • implementing a localised curriculum which is responsive to the aspirations of students, parents, and whānau. 

ERO’s role will be to support the school in its evaluation for improvement cycle to improve outcomes for all learners. ERO will support the school in reporting their progress to the community. The next public report on ERO’s website will be a Te Ara Huarau | School Evaluation Report and is due within three years.

Dr Lesley Patterson
Director Review and Improvement Services (Southern)
Southern Region | Te Tai Tini

27 July 2022 

About the School

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

Cannington School

Board Assurance with Regulatory and Legislative Requirements Report 2021 to 2024

As of December 2021, the Cannington School Board of Trustees has attested to the following regulatory and legislative requirements:

Board Administration




Management of Health, Safety and Welfare


Personnel Management






Further Information

For further information please contact Cannington School Board of Trustees.

The next Board of Trustees assurance that it is meeting regulatory and legislative requirements will be reported, along with the Te Ara Huarau | School Evaluation Report, within three years.

Information on ERO’s role and process in this review can be found on the Education Review Office website.

Dr Lesley Patterson
Director Review and Improvement Services (Southern)
Southern Region | Te Tai Tini

27 July 2022 

About the School

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

Cannington School - 06/07/2018

School Context

Cannington School is a Years 1 to 8 full primary school which provides education for 19 students.

The school’s vision is to educate and develop confident, connected and committed learners who positively contribute to society through authentic learning experiences. The school motto ‘We Can and We Do’ is supported by values of diversity, respect, excellence, active involvement and motivation.

The school states that its current priorities are providing a curriculum that supports student progress, enhancing the learning environment, fostering positive relationships in the wider community and developing internal evaluation.

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

  • achievement information in reading, writing and mathematics

  • some information about science

  • student wellbeing.

Since the previous 2015 ERO report, there has been stable staffing at the school. Leaders and teachers have been involved in a Ministry of Education Accelerated Learning in Mathematics (ALiM) project.

The school is part of the North Timaru Kāhui Ako |Community of Learning.

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 good progress with achieving equitable and excellent outcomes for its students. Students are achieving very well in reading, writing and mathematics. This has been sustained since the 2015 ERO review.

The school has high expectations that every student will achieve success.

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

Leaders and teachers demonstrate an ability to address underachievement. They identify and respond to students whose learning needs to be accelerated. The school’s achievement information shows that most students make good progress in their learning over time.

The school now needs to report clearly to the board on the extent to which all students are making sufficient and/or accelerated progress.

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 has a number of processes and practices that are effective in enabling the achievement of equity. Teachers at Cannington School know the students and their families well. The low teacher student ratios, a strategy supported by the board, enables students to receive a more individualised learning programme.

The curriculum is well resourced, wide and varied. There is a strong focus on the mathematics and science curriculums. Opportunities are provided for students to revisit their learning. Teachers work collaboratively to teach to their strengths and use resources and outside expertise to make the curriculum accessible to all students.

Students’ learning is promoted through some well-considered teacher strategies which connect with students’ lives. There is a focus in the school to develop quality questioning and extend children’s critical thinking. Education and learning opportunities outside the classroom enhance children’s understanding of the local community and the world beyond. Children have a variety of opportunities to excel in outdoor activities. This supports the enacting of the school values, and is recognised as beneficial for all students.

Teachers work collaboratively to develop a shared understanding of teaching and learning. The newly-introduced internal evaluation tool contributes to teacher reflection and aspects of curriculum improvement. Leaders and teachers, along with the board, should now embed effective internal evaluation practices at all levels of the school.

The board and staff are actively fostering relationships and connections with the local community to better support student learning opportunities. The board actively seeks and responds to survey feedback from the wider school community, and community opinions are sought and used to inform decision making.

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

The school curriculum needs to be reviewed to better reflect current teaching and learning practices and programmes. A more specific plan should be developed to show how leaders and teachers can further develop bicultural understandings and practices. Teachers need to formulate and implement plans to develop and embed bicultural perspectives in the curriculum.

Reporting to the board should be further developed to show sufficiency of progress for targeted students and all students. Teachers need to develop more specific planning and monitoring of targeted students.

School leaders and teachers must continue to strengthen internal evaluation to clearly demonstrate the impact that curriculum programmes and practices have on outcomes for children’s learning and wellbeing.

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.

Areas for improved compliance practice

To improve current practice, the board of trustees should:

  • implement appropriate in-committee processes, including recording of in-committee minutes

  • strengthen the management of the complaints process to ensure that robust processes are in place and are followed.

4 Going forward

Key strengths of the school

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

  • a learning environment that maintains consistently good student achievement

  • a range of education-outside-the-classroom opportunities for students

  • the board’s focus on strengthening connections with the local community to increase opportunities for students.

Next steps

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

  • reviewing and updating the school’s curriculum to reflect current programmes and practices

  • developing a culturally responsive pedagogy and curriculum to reflect the bicultural nature of New Zealand

  • developing further opportunities for children to set goals and reflect upon their learning and progress.

Recommendations to other agencies

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

  • strengthening board capability and effectiveness

  • developing a framework to support and implement robust internal evaluation at governance level.

ERO’s next external evaluation process and timing

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

Dr Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer

Te Waipounamu - Southern Region

6 July 2018

About the school


Cannington, South Canterbury

Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Full Primary

School roll


Gender composition

Boys 8 ; Girls 11

Ethnic composition

Māori 3

Pākehā 15

Other ethnicities 1

Review team on site

May 2018

Date of this report

6 July 2018

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review June 2015

Education Review June 2012