Omakau School

The school’s curriculum provides a wide range of experiences that effectively support and promote student learning.

Students are highly motivated and take some responsibility for their learning. ERO found that classes were calm and students were on task. Students value the way they are all different and are accepting and supportive of one another. The school-wide systems and practices the principal and teachers have developed help support the consistent implementation of effective teaching and school expectations. The teachers have high expectations and care for all students’ learning and well being.

Students’ interests are sought by teachers. The topics chosen are often based on these interests.

Teachers plan well and talk together frequently to explore ways to ensure all students have the support they need to succeed. They welcome any opportunity for professional development to support their teaching. They engage in whole-school professional development usually over a sustained period so that the new learning becomes deeply embedded in their practice.

Teachers and students use the local businesses, and geographic and historical features to make learning interesting and relevant. The teachers invite outside experts in to extend students’ experiences and widen their opportunities for exploration and learning across the curriculum. The school is very responsive to parents’ feedback and students’ learning needs. They are currently extending the science programme and provide a wide range of choice for students wanting to try different sporting activities. Students are becoming confident, competent users of ICT across the learning areas.

A specialist teacher provides the students and teachers with regular te reo Māori lessons. Students learn waiata and the school now has a kapa haka group. Teachers have begun to integrate a Māori perspective into curriculum areas.

Well-developed curriculum documents provide teachers with useful guidelines and support shared understandings. Teachers provide students with feedback/next steps. Students say they find these comments helpful for their learning.

There is a very strong emphasis on improving students’ oral language. Students are supported to become confident speakers and communicators within their learning across the curriculum. Teachers also provide a regular planned pre-school programme at the school. This aims to support pre-school children in their language development and involve parents in supporting this.

As well as quality English, mathematics, science, social studies and physical education programmes the school also offers a range of extra curricular activities including:

· French

· Camps

· Skiing

· Ice Skating

· Curling

· Swimming Lessons

· A range of I.C.T. devises

· Onsite covered and heated swimming pool