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School vision shapes curriculum redesign

Morrinsville Intermediate’s vision shapes their curriculum redesign

Take a pinch of strong leadership, add a dash of teacher buy-in, sprinkle with a sound vision for learning, where there's a greater focus on student needs driving the teaching and learning and you have a successful recipe for school-owned curriculum.

The New Zealand Curriculum Professional Learning Development supports the school’s community of learners to effectively plan and implement an authentic and personalised local curriculum that reflects the hopes and aspirations of family/whanau and aligns with the NZC. For more information and impact see the 2014 infographic data.

Kia u ki te pai. Whatever you do, let it be your best

“The vision is everything we do. This is where we started our journey in 2014 and this is at the forefront of all that we have worked towards as a community of learners at Morrinsville Intermediate School.” Principal Nathan Leith outlines the process his school took to review their curriculum with Te Toi Tupu facilitator Jacqui Ussher. Aligning the vision to the NZC made them question how everything they are doing affects the outcomes of students’ learning. Having someone from outside asking the hard questions was key to this process.


Learning focused

Morrinsville Intermediate logo

Morrinsville Intermediate vision

The one fundamental change is that now everything is centred on students’ learning. A week of staff team building and looking at expectations allowed a culture of change, with teachers taking ownership of their own learning. Relationships are key. Teachers have learning conversations, reflecting and questioning, and because teachers are more enthusiastic about learning, children are more ready to learn.

Student achievement data is transparent to everyone – teachers, students and parents. It is regularly updated and displayed in the main foyer as well as in the boardroom where it can be discussed and unpacked. Data shows what the real picture is in the school and is owned by everyone. Everyone has  responsibility for student achievement.  

Students can talk about their own learning and how it is more meaningful now. They are more engaged, taking ownership of their learning and feel better prepared for their future with the added focus on digital technologies and varied learning spaces. Learning is visible. 

The momentum continues to springboard into doing really innovative things. As a result of this work the school has:

• introduced a BYOD learning environment across the school. This includes updating old equipment to better meet learning in an online environment

• purchased new IPads and Chromebooks to give all students access

• implemented a more collaborative learning approach across all teams

• established greater integration of the curriculum and better use of specialist teachers

• built a greater focus on student needs to drive the teaching and learning and more evidence to support interventions

• enabled students to take more ownership of their learning and empowered them to direct their next learning steps

• made a shift towards deprivatising practice with greater sharing and collaboration between teachers.

"Morrinsville Intermediate School explicitly promotes its vision, values and strategic goals. Raising student achievement within meaningful learning contexts is a continual focus. Students have many opportunities to experience leadership and success.” ERO report March 2015

For more information about New Zealand Curriculum PLD, visit the NZC project page or contact Kay Stevenson.