Maungakaramea Playcentre

Education institution number:
17669
Service type:
Playcentre
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
12
Telephone:
Address:

Tauraroa Road, Maungakaramea

View on map

1 Evaluation of Maungakaramea Playcentre

How well placed is Maungakaramea Playcentre to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

ERO's findings that support this overall judgement are summarised below.

Background

Maungakaramea Playcentre is open for two sessions each week for up to 27 children from birth to school age. The Playcentre philosophy values parents/whānau as the first and best educators of their children. They take on roles and responsibilities that contribute to the running of the centre. This structure offers opportunities for emergent leadership.

In the past three years the centre has experienced a significant growth in membership. Centre members have responded positively to areas for development identified in ERO's 2014 report, which included strengthening curriculum and self-review processes. Many parents/whānau are currently enrolled in Playcentre adult education programmes.

The centre is part of the Northland Playcentre Association, which provides governance and management support for 31 Playcentres in Northland. The Association provides systems and adult education programmes to help members manage centres and support their children's learning. A centre support worker (CSW) regularly visits each centre. The Association also provides education support for five Playcentres in the Far North.

Playcentre Aotearoa is in the process of a national restructure. It is expected that a new regional manager and centre support personnel will be appointed towards the end of 2017.

This review was part of a cluster of 10 Playcentre reviews in the Northland Playcentre Association.

The Review Findings

Children and their whānau benefit from a welcoming environment that helps them to develop social connections with the local community. Many parents/whānau choose to travel some distance to attend this centre with their children.

Children are encouraged to make choices about how and where they play. Infants and toddlers have access to appropriate resources and equipment to support their exploration. Older children engage in imaginative play and negotiate with adults and other children to support their investigation and learning.

The indoor environment promotes children's curiosity and sustained play. A spacious outdoor environment offers toddlers and older children a variety of challenges. Parents/whānau work alongside children to support their learning. ERO observed good examples of adults skilfully responding to children's ideas in ways that can extend children's thinking.

Centre members have developed useful planning and assessment processes. A day-book and individual assessment records celebrate children’s learning. Members are considering ways to use this good foundation to build newer members' knowledge and understanding of how they can record children’s progress over time.

Children have opportunities to hear te reo Māori through greetings, waiata and karakia. The new whare iti is a positive addition to the play area. Adults are continuing to develop their bicultural practices and understanding of te ao Māori. As cultural diversity in the centre changes, members could consider ways to include cultural backgrounds and languages in the programme. 

Centre members work collaboratively, encourage emergent leadership and share decision making. They use internal evaluation to identify what is working well and what improvements are needed. As centre members complete Playcentre courses, this knowledge contributes to improvements in programmes for children. They could now record the positive outcomes for children that happen as a result of changes made.

The centre support worker (CSW) is aware of the strengths and needs of the centre. Her support helps members to foster positive learning outcomes for children. The CSW provides good leadership to sustain improvement and growth. Centre members appreciate that the CSW is available to answer their questions and share information that adds to their collective knowledge.

The Association continues to provide a sound management framework to assist members in managing their centres. Centre members' leadership and increased participation in adult education courses help to sustain the Association and centre viability. The governance board works collaboratively to share information with centre members as they respond to changes, including the national restructure.

Key Next Steps

Next steps for centre members are to:

  • consider ways to increase leadership opportunities for children
  • develop their knowledge of tikanga and use of te reo Māori and to affirm tamariki Māori as tangata whenua
  • continue to improve the quality of planning, assessment and evaluation records.

To enhance current practices in all Northland Playcentres, the new regional manager and support personnel should assist centre members to:

  • build their knowledge of te ao Māori, increase their bicultural understandings and promote ongoing education success for Māori children, as Māori
  • document and evaluate progress towards strategic goals
  • strengthen internal evaluation to guide ongoing improvement. 

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Maungakaramea Playcentre completed an ERO Centre Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they have taken all reasonable steps to meet their legal obligations related to:

  • curriculum
  • premises and facilities
  • health and safety practices
  • governance, management and administration.

During the review, ERO looked at the service’s systems for managing the following areas that have a potentially high impact on children's wellbeing:

  • emotional safety (including positive guidance and child protection)
  • physical safety (including supervision; sleep procedures; accidents; medication; hygiene; excursion policies and procedures)
  • suitable staffing (including qualification levels; police vetting; teacher registration; ratios)
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

All early childhood services are required to promote children's health and safety and to regularly review their compliance with legal requirements.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Maungakaramea Playcentre will be in three years.

Violet Tu’uga Stevenson
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

2 October 2017 

The Purpose of ERO Reports

The Education Review Office (ERO) is the government department that, as part of its work, reviews early childhood services throughout Aotearoa New Zealand. ERO’s reports provide information for parents and communities about each service’s strengths and next steps for development. ERO’s bicultural evaluation framework Ngā Pou Here is described in SECTION 3 of this report. Early childhood services are partners in the review process and are expected to make use of the review findings to enhance children's wellbeing and learning. 

2 Information about the Early Childhood Service 

Location

Whangarei

Ministry of Education profile number

17669

Licence type

Playcentre

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

26 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll

27

Gender composition

Girls       16
Boys      11

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Cook Islands Māori
Japanese

  2
23
  1
  1

Percentage of qualified teachers

Parent led

Reported ratios of adults to children

Under 2

1:3

Better than minimum requirements

Over 2

1:3

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

August 2017

Date of this report

2 October 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

February 2014

Education Review

September 2010

Education Review

June 2007

3 General Information about Early Childhood Reviews

ERO’s Evaluation Framework

ERO’s overarching question for an early childhood education review is ‘How well placed is this service to promote positive learning outcomes for children?’ ERO focuses on the following factors as described in the bicultural framework Ngā Pou Here:

  • Pou Whakahaere – how the service determines its vision, philosophy and direction to ensure positive outcomes for children
  • Pou Ārahi – how leadership is enacted to enhance positive outcomes for children
  • Mātauranga – whose knowledge is valued and how the curriculum is designed to achieve positive outcomes for children
  • Tikanga whakaako – how approaches to teaching and learning respond to diversity and support positive outcomes for children.

Within these areas ERO considers the effectiveness of arotake – self review and of whanaungatanga – partnerships with parents and whānau. 

ERO evaluates how well placed a service is to sustain good practice and make ongoing improvements for the benefit of all children at the service.

A focus for the government is that all children, especially priority learners, have an opportunity to benefit from quality early childhood education. ERO will report on how well each service promotes positive outcomes for all children, with a focus on children who are Māori, Pacific, have diverse needs, and are up to the age of two.

For more information about the framework and Ngā Pou Here refer to ERO’s Approach to Review in Early Childhood Services.

ERO’s Overall Judgement and Next Review

The overall judgement that ERO makes and the timing of the next review will depend on how well placed a service is to promote positive learning outcomes for children. The categories are:

  • Very well placed – The next ERO review in four years
  • Well placed – The next ERO review in three years
  • Requires further development – The next ERO review within two years
  • Not well placed - The next ERO review in consultation with the Ministry of Education

ERO has developed criteria for each category. These are available on ERO’s website.

Review Coverage

ERO reviews are tailored to each service’s context and performance, within the overarching review framework. The aim is to provide information on aspects that are central to positive outcomes for children and useful to the service. 

1 Evaluation of Maungakaramea Playcentre

How well placed is Maungakaramea Playcentre to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

ERO's findings that support this overall judgement are summarised below.

Background

Maungakaramea Playcentre is a small rural centre that operates as a parent cooperative. The centre practices are based on the Playcentre philosophy of families learning and growing together. The centre is open for two sessions per week and is licensed for up to twenty-six children from birth to school age.

Since the 2010 ERO report long-term members have worked to support the transition and retention of newer members into the centre. They have also worked on increasing members’ training levels. Course three training has been targeted as it enables the playcentre to run sessions independently and to qualify for Ministry of Education funding. The playcentre has had a high turnover of members and the roll is currently made up of mainly children under three years of age. Since the last ERO report the centre has been relicensed under the 2008 Early Childhood Regulations.

The centre operates as part of the Northland Playcentre Association. The Association is the umbrella organisation for twenty-three playcentres. Many of these centres are rural or semi-rural also with a high turnover of membership. The Association manages and distributes funding to the playcentres and provides qualification training for members. The Centre Support Workers carry out the administrative workload to enable members to focus on the programme. The Association has reviewed ways to make courses more manageable and accessible for rural members and has implemented a ‘course two in a term’ initiative.

This review was part of a cluster of four playcentre reviews in the Northland Playcentre Association.

The Review Findings

Maungakaramea Playcentre is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children. Children are engaged and settled in the programme. Periods of sustained play are evident. Children lead their own play and use the learning environment to select resources independently. Some good learning conversations are held between adults and children. Members support children to develop leadership skills and encourage cooperative and imaginative play. An infant area is provided to foster their development. Infants are at ease with adults other than their parents.

Members collaborate in promoting learning by contributing to other children’s learning documents. There are some instances of children’s interests being identified and extended during the session. The Day Book is the main planning document and is used to record activities that are offered each session. This record would be more useful if it were evaluated at the end of each session to identify how the programme could be improved to further develop children’s learning experiences in the next session. Parents could also document how they continue developing children’s learning opportunities between sessions in the home environment. Teaching and learning practices could be further promoted amongst members if Centre Support Workers modelled good practice across the membership team.

Parents take responsibility for supporting their own children to transition into school. Many children leave playcentre to attend other early childhood centres from about three and a half years of age and older. Some parents prefer their children to attend kindergarten as a transition process prior to attending school.

Commitment to promoting a bicultural partnership with Māori whānau is evident in the Northland Playcentre Association policies and procedures. The Association has developed Te Roopu Whakaaro Kotahi as a forum to support whānau Maori in playcentres. However, bicultural practices now need to be further strengthened. The New Zealand Playcentre Association’s Te Tiriti O Waitangi Framework could be used to promote ongoing development if Association support is to impact authentically on bicultural practices in Northland Association Playcentres.

Association management systems provide a basic framework for operations. The Playcentre philosophy statement has been personalised to the Maungakaramea Playcentre. The quality of practices could be strengthened considerably by members fully embedding the playcentre’s philosophy into the programme. Strategic and annual planning is in place. Annual plans should now be linked to strategic plans and include timelines and details that ensure that the strategic plan is implemented over time. Self review should be used regularly as a tool to bring about improvement.

Key Next Steps

The quality of practices could be strengthened by members:

  • continuing to explore ways to improve planning, assessment and evaluation of children’s learning

  • using the New Zealand Playcentre Federation’s Te Tiriti O Waitangi Framework to further develop bicultural practices

  • embedding the playcentre philosophy in the programme

  • linking annual and strategic planning and monitoring the implementation of this planning

  • using self review regularly to improve practice.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Maungakaramea Playcentre completed an ERO Centre Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they have taken all reasonable steps to meet their legal obligations related to:

  • curriculum

  • premises and facilities

  • health and safety practices

  • governance, management and administration.

During the review, ERO looked at the service’s systems for managing the following areas that have a potentially high impact on children's wellbeing:

  • emotional safety (including positive guidance and child protection)

  • physical safety (including supervision; sleep procedures; accidents; medication; hygiene; excursion policies and procedures)

  • suitable staffing (including qualification levels; police vetting; teacher registration; ratios)

  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

All early childhood services are required to promote children's health and safety and to regularly review their compliance with legal requirements.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Maungakaramea Playcentre will be in three years.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

21 February 2014

The Purpose of ERO Reports

The Education Review Office (ERO) is the government department that, as part of its work, reviews early childhood services throughout Aotearoa New Zealand. ERO’s reports provide information for parents and communities about each service’s strengths and next steps for development. ERO’s bicultural evaluation framework Ngā Pou Here is described in SECTION 3 of this report. Early childhood services are partners in the review process and are expected to make use of the review findings to enhance children's wellbeing and learning.

2 Information about the Early Childhood Service

Location

Whangarei

Ministry of Education profile number

17669

Licence type

Playcentre

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

26 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll

27

Gender composition

Boys 14

Girls 13

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

USA/ European

4

21

2

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:3

Better than minimum requirements

 

Over 2

1:3

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

November 2013

Date of this report

21 February 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

September 2010

 

Education Review

June 2007

 

Education Review

June 2004

3 General Information about Early Childhood Reviews

ERO’s Evaluation Framework

ERO’s overarching question for an early childhood education review is ‘How well placed is this service to promote positive learning outcomes for children?’ ERO focuses on the following factors as described in the bicultural framework Ngā Pou Here:

  • Pou Whakahaere – how the service determines its vision, philosophy and direction to ensure positive outcomes for children
  • Pou Ārahi – how leadership is enacted to enhance positive outcomes for children
  • Mātauranga – whose knowledge is valued and how the curriculum is designed to achieve positive outcomes for children
  • Tikanga whakaako – how approaches to teaching and learning respond to diversity and support positive outcomes for children.

Within these areas ERO considers the effectiveness of arotake – self review and of whanaungatanga – partnerships with parents and whānau.

ERO evaluates how well placed a service is to sustain good practice and make ongoing improvements for the benefit of all children at the service.

A focus for the government is that all children, especially priority learners, have an opportunity to benefit from quality early childhood education. ERO will report on how well each service promotes positive outcomes for all children, with a focus on children who are Māori, Pacific, have diverse needs, and are up to the age of two.

For more information about the framework and Ngā Pou Here refer to ERO’s Approach to Review in Early Childhood Services.

ERO’s Overall Judgement and Next Review

The overall judgement that ERO makes and the timing of the next review will depend on how well placed a service is to promote positive learning outcomes for children. The categories are:

  • Very well placed – The next ERO review in four years
  • Well placed – The next ERO review in three years
  • Requires further development – The next ERO review within two years
  • Not well placed - The next ERO review in consultation with the Ministry of Education

ERO has developed criteria for each category. These are available on ERO’s website.

Review Coverage

ERO reviews are tailored to each service’s context and performance, within the overarching review framework. The aim is to provide information on aspects that are central to positive outcomes for children and useful to the service.