Situated in the very Far North of New Zealand, we are a decile two co-educational school. "Kaitaia College has provided education for Year 9 to 13 students for over 90 years. More than 70 per cent of its students are MÄori, of whom a significant proportion whakapapa to the local Muriwhenua iwi of NgÄti Kuri, Te Aupouri, Ngai Takoto, Te Rarawa and NgÄti Kahu. Inter-generational connections of whÄnau, hapÅ« and iwi to the college, as well as strong links to the community’s Dalmatian and European heritage remain key features of the college". Kaitaia College started its humble beginnings on the Kaitaia Primary School site.After a few attempts at starting a Secondary Sector at that site, a successful foundation was set in the 1930s at the current Redan Road site.The school has not looked back and in the early 90s had a roll of around 1200 students. As at April 2010 Kaitaia College has a roll of 980 students.
Students have access to a broader and more student-centred curriculum. They have access to subject choices and vocational pathways that respond to their identified strengths, needs and prior learning. These learning opportunities include classes and courses in e-learning, MÄori Tourism, MÄori Performing Arts, trades and technology. A new services academy is planned to start in 2016 to complement these opportunities. The college’s self-review information shows that these programmes are impacting positively on students’ engagement and learning. The college has adopted a deliberate and systematic approach to the teaching and learning of literacy, including the appointment of a literacy leader. This leader supports curriculum leaders to develop literacy action plans, build literacy strategies and target students with low levels of achievement in literacy. This cohesive, college -wide approach is beginning to have a positive impact in supporting students’ understanding of academic language and concepts.
As at 19th May 2016, our roll stands at 923 students, the majority of which are Year 11 to 13s. Students, staff, trustees, whÄnau and iwi representatives have a strong sense of optimism and enthusiasm about the school’s new direction and leadership. The new principal, senior leaders, teachers and iwi representatives have engaged in a collaborative and inclusive process to improve student outcomes and manage strategic school improvement. The college’s long-serving principal retired at the start of 2015 and a new principal was appointed at the beginning of Term 2. He joined a leadership team that includes two long-serving deputy principals and one newer member. Many teachers and support staff have been employed by the college for a number of years and many are local to the Kaitaia area. Since ERO’s 2012 report, the college has been involved in a number of professional learning and development initiatives. These have been aimed at strengthening teaching and learning practices and improving student achievement.
The board, school leaders and teachers use data to make decisions about and design initiatives to improve student achievement. These initiatives include college and marae-based wÄnanga and the Champions programme that are supporting targeted students to improve their levels of achievement, especially in NCEA.Senior students access to academic counselling is increasing their understanding of their own learning. Senior leaders are currently reviewing the way teachers throughout the school manage achievement and assessment for students in Years 9 and 10. In particular, they recognise the need to improve the validity of this data.