School Self-Evaluation Report

This report is part of the Department of Education’s Literacy and Numeracy for Learning and Life: The National Strategy to Improve Literacy and Numeracy among Children and Young people 2011-2020.
 
Our school’s report was created by the school staff by analysing our school tests & teaching observations, in consultation with the school inspector and through parental and child surveys.

Evaluation period: January 2012 to January 2013

Report issue date: February 2013

1. Introduction

1.1  The focus of the evaluation

A school self-evaluation of teaching and learning in St.Colman’s was undertaken during the period January 2012 to January 2013. During the evaluation, teaching and learning in the following curriculum areas were evaluated:

  • Literacy
  • Numeracy: Understanding and using Mathematics
  • Physical Education
  • Science

This is a report on the findings of the evaluation.

1.2  School context

  • This is a rural co –educational primary school.
  • There are currently 31 pupils.
  • There are three teachers including a teaching principal and a shared learning support teacher.
  • The school administers Micra T and Sigma T from 1st to 6th class.

2. The findings

2.1 Assesssment

  • Standardised testing results are in general very good. In the Micra T summer 2012 standardised test, no pupil scored in the bottom 16 percentile, 3 scored in the 17 to 50 percentile and the majority 14 scored in the 51to 84 percentile with the remaining 3 pupils scoring in the 85 to 98 percentile. Pupil are below the national average in the bottom 3 percentile groups and significantly higher than the national average in the top second and third percentile group.
  • In the Sigma T summer 2012 standardised test 1 pupil scored in the 3 to 16 percentlie, 5 scored in the 17 to 50 percentile, 8 scored in the 51 to 84 percentile, 5 scored in the 85 to 98 percentile and 3 scored above the 98th percentile. Pupils are below the national average in bottom 3 percentile range 1 to 50 percentile and above average in the higher 3 percentile ranges from 51 to 98 plus.
  • It was decided that further analysis of the Standardised Test results will be undertaken with the use of the website www.scorz.ie.
  • Assessment for Learning teaching strategies will be developed.

 

2.2 Parental and Pupil input

  • Responses from a survey of parents show that en masse parents are very positive about their child’s in literacy 95% enjoy reading, 90% felt their children were doing well at reading, 90% listen to their child’s reading regularly, 100% felt their children understood what they read, 55% regularly attend the library and this is an area we will seek to increase, 85% felt their child had good oral skills.
  • Responses from a survey of parents show that en masse parents are very positive about their child’s in numeracy 95% enjoy maths, 85% felt their children were doing well at maths, 60% felt they got good information from the school on how their child was doing and we will seek to improve communication in this regard.
  • Responses from a survey of pupils show very positive attitude to literacy. In 1st & 2nd class 90% of pupils enjoy reading, 90% feel they are good readers, 80% find spellings easy,
  • Responses from a survey of pupils show very positive attitude to numeracy. In 1st & 2nd class 80% of pupils enjoy maths, 80% feel they are good at Maths, 60% find maths problems easy, 50% would like to spend more time at Maths.
  • Responses from a survey of pupils show very positive attitude to literacy. In senior classes 83% of pupils enjoy reading, 75% feel they are good readers, 58% find spellings easy,
  • Responses from a survey of pupils show much less positive attitude to numeracy. In senior classes 50% of pupils enjoy maths, 67% feel they are good at Maths, 33% find maths problems easy,17% would like to spend more time at Maths.
  • Feedback for a focus group with the 12 pupils in the senior room found that they really enjoyed “new” teaching methodologies piloted during the self evaluation process. In class learning support, literacy stations, maths games and use of ICT were all mentioned as being enjoyable and engaging.

 

2.3 Staff Self Evaluation

  • Staff evaluation of current practice led to a number of changes including the dropping of the Green Schools project and replacing it the Active School Flag programme in 2011/2012, Write a Book Project 2013, Film In School (FÍS)2012/2013, Discover Primary Science and Maths 2012/2013.
  • Staff evaluation of current practice in Literacy highlighted the need to review our English, handwriting, and phonics school plans. Oral English, Phonological Awareness Programme, use of large books, word identification strategies, reading schemes and book related events were all areas to be reviewed and developed within the English plan.
  • Staff also decided to vary teaching methodologies including more use of Assessment for Learning, in class learning support, more paired reading, more group work.
  • Physical Education policy was reviewed and the Active School Flag programme was achieved in June 2012.
  • Science to be reviewed in 2013/2014 with a view to implementing the Discover Primary Science and Maths award programme.
  • A more positive reading culture within the school would be promoted.
  • More active learning teaching strategies would be implemented in the teaching of numeracy.
  • More use of ICT in the promotion of literacy, numeracy, digital literacy and other curricular areas will re

 

3. Progress made on previously-identified improvement targets

  • In class learning support strategies have been implemented to improve literacy and numeracy through the use of active learning methodologies.
  • Physical Education policy was reviewed and the Active School Flag programme was achieved in June 2012.
  • Children in from 1st class to 6th class have engaged in the writing progess to produce their own book.
  • New timetables with new literacy and numeracy time allocated.
  • School improvement is in the process of being developed and will be finished by the end of the school year.
  • Parent teacher meetings take place outside school hours in November.
  • ICT in the school has been enhanced through the purchase of Interactive Whiteboard Software for literacy, numeracy and SESE as well as more use of existing software and internet games.

 

4. Summary of school self-evaluation findings:

4.1 Our school has strengths in the following areas:

  • Standardised test scores are very good.
  • Pupils have a positive attitude to their own learning which is well supported at home.
  • Pupils relations are very good which enhances co operative learning strategies to be developed.
  • Staff are willing and enthusiastic to try out different teaching methodologies and new educational programs.

 

4.2 The following areas are prioritised for improvement:

  • Teaching methodologies
  • Improve positive learning attitudes
  • Problem solving in numeracy especially
  • Whole school English planning – Phonics, handwriting, readers.
  • Vocabulary development – personalised dictionaries, literacy on display

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