Wakatipu High scores highly

The government’s Education Review Office (ERO) has marked Wakatipu High highly in its latest report card on the school.

In its ‘evaluation report’, released two weeks ago, ERO commends the school for working alongside it for three years to improve, in particular, junior school literacy levels — otherwise known as reading and writing.

It’s also happy disparities in learning between boys and girls — where the former lagged behind the latter — have been reduced, and there are also more ‘‘equitable outcomes’’ for Māori and Pacific students.

ERO says the biggest shift’s come in teachers’ capacity and capability ‘‘to provide targeted teaching and support for literacy learning and progress throughout the school’’.

Principal Oded Nathan says he’s very pleased with the report, and has told staff ‘‘it signals some great work being done at each layer of the organisation’’.

In terms of support for literacy learning, he notes ‘‘with the support of the Wakatipu High School Foundation we’ve been able to release half-a-dozen teachers to upskill their ability to teach structured literacy and to ultimately support students with their literacy achievement’’.

In turn, Nathan, says, it ‘‘opens up a world of opportunities once they can read and write’’.

Specifically, ERO points out, Wakatipu High’s ‘‘increased the number and proportion of students achieving at or above curriculum level 5 in reading and writing’’.

Nathan’s also pleased the report shows ‘‘our Māori students do feel they are consistently well supported, and they do feel comfortable with the school, but this is an area we continually want to develop’’.

The ‘‘agreed next steps’’ include continuing to build staff and students’ capability in te reo Māori to support equity and excellence for all Māori learners.

Within six months, the school will host a whānau advisory group and whānau hui focused on its Māori language strategy.

And every six months it’ll facilitate a Māori student hui focused on students’ sense of cultural identity, and how well supported they feel.

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