Princes St Childcare Centre

Education institution number:
20207
Service type:
Education and Care Service
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
25
Telephone:
Address:

21 Princes Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland

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1 Evaluation of Princes St Childcare Centre

How well placed is Princes St Childcare Centre to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Princes St Childcare Centre requires further development to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

Princes St Childcare Centre requires further support to extend how well it promotes positive learning outcomes for children. Developments are needed in curriculum, assessment, planning and evaluation, staff professional capability and strengthening sustainable systems and processes.

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

Background

Princes St Childcare Centre is a community-based centre, run by a charitable trust. It operates in a heritage building in the Central Business District (CBD) and is leased from the Auckland Council (AC). The centre is licensed to provide education and care for 40 children, including 14 under the age of two years.

Since the 2016 ERO report, the centre has had changes in the management structure, including the appointment of two new staff in the last 12 months. There is a team of four registered teachers, one unqualified teacher, a part-time office manager, a centre reliever and a kai creator. A new board chair has recently been elected to the trust.

The centre philosophy acknowledges that relationships are the foundation of centre practices. It values tamariki as capable, competent learners within a committed bicultural curriculum. The philosophy embraces inclusive practice, including respecting and celebrating individuality within a multicultural society. ERO observed aspects of the philosophy reflected in practice.

The 2016 ERO report outlined strengths, of which some areas have been sustained. The report also noted the need to improve regular teachers' planning and assessment practices and review the appraisal policy to reflect current centre procedures. These areas continue to be development priorities.

The Review Findings

Children are warmly welcomed into the centre. They benefit from caring, nurturing and respectful relationships with teachers. Children engage in group activities and have opportunities to play independently. They move freely from the main indoor space to the outside area. Children with additional needs are well supported.

Infants and toddlers have access to a good range of resources. Teachers maintain a calm, slow pace with younger children. They show compassion, respect and support for children and respond positively to their needs. Infants and toddlers benefit from a mixed-age group experience as well as having access to their own separate space.

Teachers' communication with parents has strengthened over time. An on-line system has enabled parents to contribute more fully in their child's learning. Parents who ERO spoke with commented on the inclusive nature of the centre and how well teachers connected with all children.

Features of te ao Māori are evident in centre displays and in the manaakitanga and whanaungatanga shown by staff. Teachers use te reo Māori purposefully during the day.

The centre manager is working towards establishing a centre-wide culture that supports and builds collaboration and professional practice. This includes strengthening the appraisal process and children's transitions beyond the centre.

Key Next Steps

Key next steps include:

  • establishing curriculum planning and evaluation documentation

  • leaders strengthening capacity building and providing opportunities for leadership

  • strengthening professional development opportunities that align to individual appraisal goals

  • developing a robust appraisal process aligned to Teaching Council requirements

  • further strengthening strategic planning that aligns to the annual plan, appraisal goals and professional development.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Princes St Childcare Centre 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.

In order to improve practice, centre leaders need to ensure fire and earthquake drills are regularly recorded.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified areas of non-compliance relating to curriculum. To meet requirements the service needs to improve its performance in the following area:

  • documenting curriculum planning and evaluation that demonstrates an understanding of children's learning, their interests, and whānau and life contexts.

Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Centres 2008, C2.

Development Plan Recommendation

ERO recommends that the service, in consultation with the Ministry of Education, develop a plan to address the key next steps and action outlined in this report.

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services (Northern)

Northern Region - Te Tai Raki

28 May 2020

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

Auckland CBD

Ministry of Education profile number

20207

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, including up to 14 aged under 2 years

Service roll

26

Gender composition

Girls 13 Boys 13

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā
Chinese
other ethnic groups

4
4
18

Percentage of qualified teachers

80% +

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:4

Better than minimum requirements

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

February 2020

Date of this report

28 May 2020

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

June 2016

Supplementary Review

June 2013

Education Review

May 2012

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

The overall judgement that ERO makes will depend on how well the service promotes positive learning outcomes for children. The categories are:

  • Very well placed

  • Well placed

  • Requires further development

  • Not well placed

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 Princes St Community Childcare Centre

How well placed is Princes St Community Childcare Centre 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

Princes Street Community Childcare operates in a heritage building backing onto Albert Park in the Auckland City CBD. It is licensed for 40 children including 14 aged under two years, and provides full day education and care programmes.

The service is governed by the Princes Street Childcare Trust Board. There have been significant changes to the governance, management and leadership of the centre in the past two years. A new trust board with six parent trustees was appointed in 2014, and leadership roles and responsibilities have been reviewed. The board employs a centre manager to lead a team of five qualified, full-time teachers.

The indoor learning areas have two separate dedicated spaces for children aged up to two years, and for older children up to school age. Other indoor spaces and the outdoor activity area are shared by the two age groups, which allows children to play for periods of time in mixed age groups.

The centre philosophy and vision guide and underpin all practices and developments at the centre. The philosophy is centred on building good relationships between whānau, teachers and children. The document is linked to Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, and emphasises the team’s commitment to bi-cultural practices and meeting the needs of an increasingly diverse community.

The 2013 ERO report acknowledged that teachers catered well for the learning needs of children but identified a number of areas that needed further work. The trust board and the teaching team have responded well to ERO's findings. Self-review processes have been strengthened, governance and management roles have been reviewed, and teachers have been supported to further develop programme planning. Ongoing work is in place to improve teachers' planning and assessment practices.

The Review Findings

Children and their whānau are warmly welcomed into the well-resourced centre, and there is a warm, inclusive atmosphere in the centre. Children freely access a wide range of resources and have many opportunities to make choices about their play. They settle quickly, play well alongside each other and enthusiastically join in group learning activities.

Leaders' and teachers' focus on maintaining warm and respectful relationships with children and their families has contributed to the ongoing sense of community ownership. Unhurried parent and staff interactions help foster children’s sense of well-being and belonging. Parents express high levels of satisfaction with the centre and the staff. They value the inclusive, multi-cultural environment, and teachers' in-depth knowledge of their child's development, strengths and interests.

Teachers are attentive and responsive to the needs and preferences of infants and toddlers. Toddlers make choices and are encouraged to join in activities. They benefit from respectful nurturing care from teachers and opportunities for younger and older children to learn from each other.

Children engage well with their teachers and with the responsive and well-paced programme. Routines are unhurried and allow children time to sustain their interest in activities. The learning programme is well aligned to Te Whāriki, and integrates literacy and numeracy into play activities throughout the day. Children are encouraged to self-manage, initiate play with others, and build friendships. Developing these social skills and a strong relationships focus are woven through teachers' planning and should help children when they go to school.

Bicultural practices are strong. Te reo Māori is interwoven naturally through the programme. Staff and children have opportunities to learn waiata and karakia. Centre programmes and practices also develop children’s knowledge and appreciation of other cultures and languages.

Teachers' planning recognises and responds to the interests and strengths of individual children well. Leaders have identified further refinements that are needed to improve planning and evaluation. Children’s individual learning progress is currently documented in portfolios. A new, online portfolio is about to be introduced. This will allow teachers to better document children's progress and learning outcomes, and to more easily share these with families.

The trust board and centre leaders provide worthwhile professional learning opportunities for all staff. A number of significant reviews have been carried out recently, and have informed the centre's strategic planning. The strategic plan provides a useful basis for reviewing centre progress. Leaders have ensured that staff have been fully involved in these reviews. Parent feedback has also been used regularly.

Key Next Steps

Centre leaders and ERO agree that the next steps for the centre include:

  • strengthening the rigour, quality and regularity of assessment
  • continuing to develop learning partnerships with parents through children's learning stories
  • continuing to strengthen teachers' deliberate reflection on the impact of their teaching on children's learning outcomes
  • reviewing the appraisal policy to reflect current centre procedures.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Princes St Community Childcare Centre 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 Princes St Community Childcare Centre will be in three years.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

17 June 2016

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

Auckland CBD

Ministry of Education profile number

20207

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, including up to 14 aged under 2

Service roll

34

Gender composition

Girls 17 Boys 17

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Middle Eastern

Chinese

Samoan

Indian

other Asian

1

15

5

2

1

1

9

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%+

Based on funding rates

80% +

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:4

Better than minimum requirements

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

April 2016

Date of this report

17 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

 

Supplementary Review

June 2013

Education Review

May 2012

Education Review

October 2008

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.