Specialist Areas

SCHOOL-WIDE STUDENT ASSESSMENT, RECORDING AND REPORTING

Quality assessment and reporting practices are fundamental to successful teaching and learning. The Education Group directors provide training and support in streamlining processes and developing the use of valid and reliable assessment tools. Support in data aggregation and analysis is also a key component of the work. Directors are knowledgeable about the most commonly used School Management Systems and can help schools in developing templates to meet specific needs. Other training includes the development of three way reporting systems and reporting to the BOT. We have experience across the primary, intermediate and secondary sectors and particular expertise in ensuring schools are delivering NCEA effectively.

QUALITY FORMATIVE ASSESSMENT PRACTICE

There is now overwhelming evidence that quality formative assessment practices have a positive impact on student outcomes. Practices include the identification by teachers and learners of learning outcomes and criteria for achieving these, rich conversations between teachers and students that continually build and go deeper, the provision of effective, timely feedback to enable students to advance in their learning, the active involvement of students in their own learning, and teachers responding to identified learning needs and strengths by modifying their teaching approaches. Over the last 12 years, all directors of The Education Group have worked extensively in these areas in primary, intermediate and secondary schools. This has included work on the Assess To Learn Ministry contracts, assessment reviews in schools and developing assessment programmes and practices within departments and schools. The Education Group has also been involved in reviewing the national assessment contracts in conjunction with Massey University.

STUDENT SUSPENSION PROCESS

The rules and procedures related to student stand-downs and suspensions are prescribed by law. Getting the process right and ensuring that the principles of natural justice are adhered to are critical to good decision making by school staff and Board of Trustees. The Education Group provides training for senior managers and trustees in this highly complex and critical area of governance and management.

EFFECTIVE TEACHING PRACTICE

The quality of teaching and learning is paramount to student success and the success of a school. There is international and New Zealand research, in which the Directors have been involved, that is very clear about what effective teaching looks like in classrooms. We provide professional development for senior leadership teams, HODs, team leaders and teachers in the theory, the establishment of school-wide approaches and classroom practices related to student locus of control, teacher/student relationships, formative assessment, differentiated teaching and learning, inquiry learning and thinking skills, using student achievement data and cooperative learning strategies.

NUMERACY DEVELOPMENT PROJECT TRAINING

The Numeracy Development Project has been influential in changing the way mathematics is taught and learned in schools. Mathematical knowledge and strategy is developed concurrently, giving students a range of options to help them solve mathematical problems. The focus is to improve student achievement and develop the professional capability of teachers. The Education Group offers training and support in the Numeracy Development Project and in mathematics teaching and learning. All professional development is tailor-made for each individual school. Work is informed by current student achievement data and staff professional development needs.

SKILLS FOR GROWING/SKILLS FOR ADOLESCENCE/SKILLS FOR ACTION

The Lions Quest organisation has been offering comprehensive life skills education training to teachers, school leaders, school support staff, parents and community members in New Zealand for over 15 years. These programmes focus on the development of key competencies and personal and social responsibility in students aged between 5 and 18. Training consists of a two day workshop and extensive resources which prepares teachers to teach these programmes to their students. The Education Group offers training in these programmes with the support of the Lions Clubs International.