Community engagement research – Auckland Intermediate Schools (AIS)


The Auckland Intermediate Schools (AIS) contract is a research project being carried out by CORE for the Ministry of Education, to explore how a diverse community of schools in Auckland is working together to support student, teacher and community agency. This is a qualitative research project employing narrative to capture and share the stories of change from within this community.

The AIS research project supports the innovative collaboration of nine intermediate schools1 in the Auckland region that have been working together as a Learning and Change Network (LCN) effectively for the past two years. This project centres on the new initiatives that are beginning to emerge as the LCN moves into its third year with the key focus areas being student agency and parent participation.

The aim of the research is to collect and share narratives of change that will be primarily collected through conversations with students and teacher focus group discussions. The data collection will also include some whānau interviews, designed and carried out by students themselves. The narratives shared will highlight how the ongoing LCN initiatives are impacting on student learning and achievement with a particular emphasis on:

  • Individual, collective and diverse stories coming together
  • New initiatives for supporting agency and participation
  • Continuing work towards improvement in writing
  • The impact of innovations for priority learners

The research report will be a resource for the immediate school communities but will also be used to contribute to the knowledge being built around student agency and family engagement in the wider education community of New Zealand. Dr Louise Taylor from CORE Education is leading this research project, working closely with the LCN to ensure a collaborative research design and approach. The project runs from June 2015 – June 2016.

1 Auckland Normal; Belmont; Birkdale; Glenfield; Kōwhai; Murrays Bay; Otahuhu Pasadena; Waikōwhai. The decile ratings are representative of a range from 1 to 10.