Managing National Assessment Report 2013 Waiheke High School

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Managing National Assessment Report 2013 Waiheke High School
Managing National


Waiheke High School
Managing National Assessment Report
Waiheke High School
13 June 2013

The purpose of the Managing National Assessment (MNA) external review is:

  •   to help schools achieve valid, fair, accurate and consistent internal assessment
      according to the requirements of the Assessment and Examination Rules for
      Schools with Consent to Assess 2013 (Assessment Rules) and

  •   in combination with the most recent Education Review Office report to ensure that
      schools are meeting the requirements of the Consent to Assess Against
      Standards on the Directory of Assessment Standards Rules 2011 and its
      Guidelines (CAAS Guidelines) in order to maintain their consent to assess.

This process is a partnership between schools and the New Zealand Qualifications
Authority (NZQA) so that assessment systems remain effective and internal
assessment decisions are valid.

The MNA review has two components:
  1. the annual external moderation of assessment materials for an NZQA-selected
     sample of internally assessed standards across the curriculum and the teacher
     grade judgments on the student work identified by the school’s random-selection
  2. the external review of each school’s assessment systems at least once every four
This report summarises NZQA’s evaluation of how effectively:
  •   the school has addressed issues identified during the previous MNA review on
      31 March 2010
  •   the school manages assessment for national qualifications
  •   the school manages internal and external moderation
  •   the school manages and makes use of assessment-related data
  •   the school maintains the currency of assessment policy and procedures and
      communicates them to staff, students and families.

In preparing this report, the School Relationship Manager (SRM) met with the
Principal’s Nominee and then with the Faculty Managers for English, Mathematics,
Social Sciences and Technology. The school also provided the SRM with extensive and
thoughtful pre-review information, the staff and student assessment procedures guides
and other school documents, as listed on page 7 of this report.

There was a report-back with the Principal and his Nominee at the end of the visit to
highlight strengths and to suggest further good practice.

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2010 Managing National Assessment Report (CAAS Guidelines 3v)
Evidence was sought that action items in the previous MNA report have been effectively
There were no compulsory action items in the 2010 report.

Assessment Practice (CAAS Guidelines 2.5v-vii, 2.6, 3v)
How does the school’s assessment practice allow for the effective management of
assessment for national qualifications?

Meeting students’ assessment needs Waiheke High School is a Year 7 to Year 13
school. Its teachers and managers have observed that improving NCEA results must
starts with Year 7 and that students’ grades for NCEA Level 1 are generally maintained
at Level 2 and Level 3.

The school has therefore set out to enhance every school factor influencing student
achievement from the middle years onward. Faculties seek to improve the quality of
teaching and learning through self-review, targeted professional learning and cross-
discipline discussion. Student attendance and engagement have increased and the
school has reinforced communication within the school and with parents. Assessment
quality assurance and data management have both been reviewed and strengthened.

Form teachers and deans interview students each year as they choose their subjects
and set their qualifications goals. Each student’s progress sheet from the student
management software is emailed home monthly. This shows a cumulative list of the
number of credits achieved at each grade and each level of NCEA, set out by year, with
courses, credit totals, endorsements and qualifications gained. The dean or the
Principal’s Nominee meets with the student if she or he is not on track for success and
all students have a conversation about their progress early in Term 3, while there
remains time to make improvements. Parents are kept informed of the outcome.

Successes are celebrated publically, with certificates awarded in assembly and mention
made in newsletters.

Collecting evidence and assessment Teachers in the faculties interviewed select an
assessment type and set assessment conditions that suit the topic or the skill, in order
to help students gain their best possible result. Many assessments take the form of a
test, performance or assignment, but teachers may also assess a project in response to
a brief, observe a performance or practical activity or seek evidence of achievement
from student journals and portfolios. The subject leaders discussed their approaches
and the reasons they choose them. They commented that the aligned standards
encourage the use of a wider range of assessment methods, especially cumulative
ones, such as portfolios.

The teachers understand and apply NZQA’s rules relating to further assessment
opportunities and resubmission, as set out in Assessment Rules 6.6. They also stated
their preference for organising students into getting the best result from a single
assessment opportunity. Teachers willingly discussed their assessment methods,
especially in relation to redrafting and resubmission, and are confident that they
consider all valid and verifiable evidence.

Authenticity Teachers use one or more of a range of methods to ensure the
authenticity of students’ assessment work. They change the context from one year to
the next and modify the assessments. They control the conditions and materials and
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they check projects at milestone points. They may also compare notes and drafts with
the final work and interview a student to establish their understanding and authorship of
the work they have submitted.

Missed and late assessments If an internal assessment event or deadline is
unavoidably missed, an extension or a late or further assessment opportunity may be
approved. Otherwise, a grade may be based on standard-specific evidence from other
authentic work. If none of these is possible, the entry may be withdrawn.

If missing the assessment was avoidable and no prior arrangement to withdraw the
entry was made, Not Achieved is reported.

Derived grades Complete records are kept for students who were unable through no
fault of their own to sit their NCEA examinations or whose performance was impaired
by illness or accident. Teachers also understand the need to quality-assure practice
assessments for external standards and to manage any authenticity issues if they
intend to use the results for derived grades for an external standard.

Literacy and numeracy The Faculty Managers for English and Mathematics track all
students’ progress towards meeting the literacy and numeracy requirements for NCEA
with the help of the deans. They inform any student for whom this looks problematic, as
well as their teachers. In 2012, 99 per cent of Year 11 students at Waiheke High School
achieved Level 1 literacy and numeracy.

The school now tracks university entrance literacy across the curriculum, as they do for

School self-review Collaborative self-review has become part of the culture across
the school, ably led by the Principal. The Principal’s Nominee canvasses and resolves
any assessment issues in consultation with the other senior managers and the Heads
of Faculty. The teachers interviewed pride themselves on open discussion among
colleagues and between staff, students and parents.

Identified action

No action was identified as needed to improve the effective management of
assessment for national qualifications.

Moderation (CAAS Guidelines 2.6, 3v)
How effectively does the school manage internal and external moderation?

Internal moderation processes All assessments must be quality-assured and the
processes recorded on an Internal Moderation Cover Sheet. The interviews with the
Faculty Managers and the completed cover sheets sighted for each department indicate
clear understandings and thorough processes. Teachers have set up verification
partnerships with colleagues in their own department and at other schools. They are
also active in their subject associations and in cluster groups and they attend NZQA
moderation Best Practice Workshops.

Monitoring internal moderation Completed cover sheets are passed to the
Principal’s Nominee, who checks them before unlocking the results for sending to
NZQA. Internal moderation is well managed and the Faculty Managers commented that
they found the whole process useful. These practices help ensure the credibility of
internal assessment across the school.

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Benchmarking and random selection Annotated benchmark copies of student work
for future reference are filed with the other materials for each standard. With these are
samples for possible external moderation, randomly selected by the student
management system once the results are unlocked.

External moderation procedures The Principal’s Nominee advises each teacher in
charge of a subject of the standards selected for external moderation and assembles
and dispatches the submissions to the moderators.

When the moderation reports are returned, she passes them, the materials and the
student work back to the teacher and discusses any action or advice needed in
response to a report. Where the materials have not been approved, which indicates a
failure of the critiquing process of internal moderation, the Principal’s Nominee arranges
another senior colleague to work closely with the Faculty Manager, in order to avoid a
repeat. Similarly, if the majority of the grade judgments were not agreed, the faculty
must arrange more effective verification advice. A Response to External Moderation
form is available if it is needed to record and track the follow-up action.

This approach allows good practice to be affirmed, while ensuring that remedies are
recorded and their completion tracked.

External moderation The latest moderation round was in August 2012, when 27
standards were selected. The materials (the test or brief and the schedule of answers)
were approved for 17 standards and those for seven others required some modification
before being used again.

The moderators agreed with all or most of the teachers’ grade judgments on the student
work submitted for 22 standards and with half or fewer than half for three standards,
each in a different subject. Agreement rates improve each year, as a result of the good
internal moderation practice now in place at the school.

No materials or student work were submitted for one standard and no student work was
submitted for one further standard. The Principal’s Nominee is confident that her tighter
system will avoid this being repeated.

The Principal’s Nominee is the point of contact between the school and the industry
training organisations (ITOs) it engages with. The school’s management of moderation
by ITOs is the same as for NZQA moderation and sample reports were sighted.

Identified action

No action was identified as needed to improve internal and external moderation in order
to assure assessment quality.

Data (CAAS Guidelines 2.6, 2.7)
How effectively does the school manage and use its assessment-related data?

Accuracy of assessment-related data The Principal’s Nominee works with teachers
and students to ensure the accuracy of the entries and results sent to NZQA. Students
are asked to check their data progressively on NZQA’s Learner login and teachers are
expected to check their results record for each standard against the reports on the
school’s secure NZQA site. Indeed a spot-check may be called: a class in a computer
room may be asked to log in and check the school’s accurate reporting of their results
for the year to date.

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Use of NZQA’s Learner login Students may register for Learner login on school
computers and these remain available to students throughout the year. In 2012, 88 per
cent of the senior students at Waiheke High School registered. Ninety-four per cent of
those students logged in at least once more during the year and 80 per cent viewed
their results on line in January 2013.

Privacy and password security Each staff member requiring access to the high
security features on the school’s NZQA login site has been assigned an individual
Education Sector Authentication and Authorisation user name and password. Other
teachers needing access to read-only general features have also been registered with
their user name and unique password. The Principal’s Nominee will manage the list of
those with approved access to both categories, adding teachers who join the staff and
removing those who leave. This will ensure that only those who need it will be able to
access private and secure information available on this site.

Analysis of entries and results The Principal prepares a whole-school analysis of
qualifications completion and endorsements. The school’s drive to improve
qualifications results is proving successful. In 2012, Waiheke High School students
exceeded the roll-based co-educational decile 6 mean for NCEA at each level and for
University Entrance. At Level 1 in Year 11, for example, the school bettered the decile
mean by 20 percentage points. The school keeps pressure on itself by consistently
comparing itself to the means of decile-band 8-10 schools.

The subject leaders must write a commentary on their results in their Faculty Annual
Report, tracking any trends and proposing specific reasons for good results and
remedies for those that are not so good. The teachers may also justify a change in the
standards they assign to a course in the current year.

The whole-school and department reports sighted confirm that the school actively uses
its data to improve results for students.

Use of outside providers Sample current memoranda of understanding were sighted
with outside providers.

Identified action
No action was identified as needed to improve the management and use of
assessment-related data.

Communication (CAAS Guidelines 2.4i, 2.6, 3v)
How effectively does the school maintain the currency of assessment policy and
procedures and communicate them to staff, students and families?

Communication of policies and procedures to staff, students and their families
The following documents were provided for this visit:
 • Achievement in 2013: Student Guidelines Booklet
 • Internal Procedures on Assessment, Moderation and Reporting for NCEA (staff
 • Waiheke High School Analysis of Variance 2012
 • sample course assessment statements
 • sample Faculty Annual Reports

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Minutes of a Teaching and Learning Committee meeting
 • handout for a Year 10 NCEA parent information evening
 • Staff Newsletter Term 2 2013
 • pre-review information.

Assessment guides The Principal’s Nominee works with other senior managers and
with the Faculty Managers to update assessment practice and procedures and
document them. The student booklet and the staff guide are reviewed annually and are
comprehensive. Some additions and minor refinements were discussed for the next
version of both. The Principal’s Nominee is planning, for example, to add her internal
moderation monitoring process to the staff guide, in order to give new teachers a ready
reference to follow.

They say they are better informed and that they get satisfaction from being part of a
coordinated effort that is paying off

Course outlines and assessment statements The course outlines include a similar
table with details of the standards to be assessed and any further assessment
opportunities planned. Students get comparable information across their courses

Secure extranet The school’s Moodle secure extranet is established and under
further development, with additional features planned, such as a parent portal into their
child’s Kamar file. Professional learning is also planned for teachers on their use of
Moodle for e-learning, as well as for data access.

Identified action
No action was identified as needed to maintain the currency of assessment policy and
procedures and communicate them to staff.


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Waiheke High School is commended for the way it has set up its systems and practice
for assessment for qualifications. Effective, collaborative self-review processes ensure
that these systems are well understood and regularly revised. The school takes a total-
quality approach to investigating and implementing improvements
Assessment is managed well by the Principal’s Nominee and the Faculty Managers and
the school’s collaborative approach supports them in their review and decision-making.

Students are helped to set aspirational goals and then take responsibility for them and
they gain sound and improving qualifications completion results. Parents are kept well
informed of students’ goals and of progress towards them.

Teachers keep their practice up to date and use a wide range of assessment methods
to good effect. Internal moderation practice is robust and well monitored by the Faculty
Managers and the Principal’s Nominee.

The school’s entries and results data are accurate and usefully analysed. Qualifications
and course information is complete and up to date.

The 2013 Managing National Assessment review identified no significant issue that
might prevent the school from meeting the requirements of the Consent to Assess
Against Standards on the Directory of Assessment Standards Rules 2013 and its

Based on the outcome of this assessment systems check, it is expected that the next
Managing National Assessment review will be conducted within three years.

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