28 Apr 2016

ERO reports on three charter schools

12:56 pm on 28 April 2016

Three new charter schools have made a good start, according to the Education Review Office.

The reports covered two of the publicly-funded private schools in Auckland, Te Kura Māori o Waatea and Pacific Advance Senior School, and one in Whangarei, Te Kāpehu Whetū -Teina.

Teacher and student at Linwood Primary School, Christchurch.

Teacher and student at Linwood Primary School, Christchurch. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

The reviews were generally positive, but identified problems such as the need to increase enrolments or develop curriculums.

The report for Pacific Advance Senior School said it had 105 students in Years 11 and 12 at the start of this year and the school had done a good job of engaging them in their learning.

It said many students started at the school well below achievement expectations for their age level and to get students confident and able to complete Level 1 NCEA qualification was a significant success for the school.

It said 36 students were awarded Level 1 NCEA, which was 57 percent of the student body.

"Most of these students had been out of school for at least half a year prior to coming here. The ongoing challenge for staff is to accelerate formal student achievement."

It said the school also needed to work with other education providers so it could offer students a broader range of subjects.

The report for Te Kapehu Whetu, Teina, said it provided a culturally nurturing and personally enriching environment.

It said the primary school had increasingly capable leadership and the teachers were all appropriately qualified and registered.

"A good start has been made in determining children's foundation knowledge in maths, reading and writing. The challenge for teachers is to ensure that strategies to support learners to make age-appropriate progress or better are in place."

The review office said Te Kura Maori o Waatea had 51 students at the start of 2016 and was progressing toward meeting the guaranteed minimum roll for which it was funded. Last year the minimum roll was 60.

It said the principal provided effective leadership and teachers were making increasingly good use of achievement data to identify students' strengths and weaknesses.

"Students at Te Kura Māori o Waatea are benefiting from focused and purposeful teaching that supports them and their whānau to engage in learning. Effective leadership and shared commitment from the adults on site are helping to make the sponsor's vision come to life. "

The three schools were among four charter schools set up at the start of 2015. The fourth, [. http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/292691/new-charter-school-gets-thumbs-up Middle School West Auckland] published its first Education Review Office report in December 2015.