Creators @ Home - Waikato Quality

Education institution number:
Service type:
Homebased Network
Not Applicable
Total roll:

201 Sandwich Road, St Andrews-Hamilton, Hamilton

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1 Evaluation of Creators @ Home-Waikato Quality

How well placed is Creators @ Home-Waikato Quality 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.


Creators @ Home-Waikato Quality, previously known as Bizzy Buddyz Waikato, provides education and care for children from birth to school age. The service was purchased by Creators Education Trust in September 2015. Creators Education Trust, a not-for-profit organisation, operates a network of home and centre based services throughout New Zealand. This service is licensed for 60 children and at the time of this review had a roll of 55, including 24 Māori children.

Creators @ Home-Waikato Quality is licensed as a quality service where all educarers hold an early childhood education qualification.

The service's philosophy states a belief that 'love is all you need, children are uniquely created full of wonder and potential, constructing their own knowledge. A culture of innovative learning in homes will provide a rich educational experience for tamariki'.

The Review Findings

Children benefit from participating in a rich and varied curriculum programme. They have many opportunities to explore the local and wider community including participating in weekly playgroups organised by the service. Individual portfolios, which are also available in electronic format, provide children and parents with an attractive and meaningful record of their involvement in the programme. Children with special learning and health needs are well catered for within an inclusive environment. Educarers have developed respectful and nurturing relationships with children.

Priority is placed on extending children’s literacy, mathematics and oral language skills through meaningful play. Children under two benefit from being in environments where educarers closely follow the preferences of parents for the care of their children. The service is yet to fully develop and implement systems to promote Māori children’s language culture and identity.

Educarers have a well-managed approach to supporting children's transition to school and are working in close partnership with parents. They provide daily opportunities for parents to share important information about their child. Children’s learning and wellbeing are well supported by participating in meaningful programmes.

Visiting teachers are highly responsive to supporting educarers to promote positive outcomes for children. They regularly provide meaningful feedback and guidance to educarers. Visiting teachers implement robust quality assurance processes to ensure that educarers provide a safe environment for children. Some visiting teachers model effective assessment practices and provide high quality feedback for educarers. Promoting the consistency of these practices is an ongoing priority for leaders.

Service leaders are knowledgeable, well-informed, and experienced early childhood educators. Leaders are reflective and focused on providing positive outcomes for children. They have developed high levels of trust with visiting teachers and provide them with relevant support and guidance. Leaders work with visiting teachers and educarers to regularly review policies. Useful processes are being established to review the effectiveness of service operations. Effective leadership contributes to positive outcomes for children

The trust provides strong governance for the service. A clear vision and strategic plan guides the ongoing development and improvement of the service. A well-developed policy framework underpins the service's operations. The trust provides generous support for visiting teacher professional development. Well-developed governance processes support the service to provide positive outcomes for children.

Key Next Steps

ERO and service leaders agree that a key next step is to build consistency of effective visiting teacher practices. Consideration should be given to;

  • developing agreed and shared expectations for educarers continued professional learning

  • providing visiting teachers with regular feedback about the effectiveness of their practice

  • strengthening the current teacher appraisal process.

Leaders and visiting teachers should give priority to supporting educarers to implement programmes that support Māori children’s language, culture and identity and promote New Zealand’s bicultural heritage for all children.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Creators @ Home-Waikato Quality completed an ERO Home-based Education and Care 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 Creators @ Home-Waikato Quality will be in three years.

Lynda Pura-Watson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Waikato/Bay of Plenty

29 June 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 Home-based Education and Care Service 



Ministry of Education profile number


Institution type

Homebased Network

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

60 children, including up to 60 aged under 2

Service roll


Standard or Quality Funded


Gender composition

Boys 35 Girls 20

Ethnic composition



Number of qualified coordinators in the network


Required ratios of staff educators to children

Under 2


Over 2


Review team on site

May 2017

Date of this report

29 June 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)


Education Review

April 2014

Education Review

February 2011

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 the draft methodology for ERO reviews in Home-based Education and Care Services: July 2014

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 The Education Review Office (ERO) Evaluation  Home-Based Care Bizzy Buddyz Waikato

Bizzy Buddyz Ltd provides education and care for children from birth to school age, in educarers’ homes. The service is privately owned and operates four networks, three in Whakatane covering the Eastern Bay of Plenty, and one in the Waikato. This network is based in Hamilton and is overseen by a knowledgeable manager. Experienced and qualified visiting teachers are responsible for managing the quality of education and care in educarers’ homes. The service’s programmes are guided by Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.

The owner/director and visiting teachers continue to provide sound governance and management for the service. A notable strength of the service is the positive and trusting relationships among children, educarers, families and visiting teachers. Educarers enjoy working with children and are committed to supporting their wellbeing and development.

Frequent outings in the community and regular attendance at playgroups provide new experiences and opportunities for children and educarers to socialise. Learning programmes effectively promote children’s language development, mathematical knowledge and social competencies. Children are becoming confident, capable learners in a variety of inclusive home environments that provide rich and meaningful contexts for learning.

The visiting teachers provide educarers with useful advice and guidance, and suggest ways to give children relevant additional activities and experiences. Discussions are focused on reviewing the progress and development of each child.

ERO and the service owner/director agree there is a need to strengthen professional leadership in implementing effective staff-appraisal and self-review processes. During home visits ERO identified some health and safety matters that need to be addressed.

Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO will review the service again within three years.

2 The Focus of the Review

All ERO education reviews in early childhood focus on the quality of education. For ERO this includes the quality of:

  • the programme provided for children
  • the learning environment
  • the interactions between children and adults.

The Quality of Education


Bizzy Buddyz Waikato aims to provide quality childcare and education with positive outcomes for children. Since the last ERO review the service has moved to new premises and there have been some changes in the teaching team. A 3-4 year old play group has been introduced to support children’s transition to school. During this review, ERO visited four educarers’ homes and attended a mixed-age play group session.

Areas of good performance

Management and governance: The owner/director provides sound management and governance for the service. Educarers are well informed about the service’s expectations for education and care. There are clear guidelines that outline expectations for practice, and meeting legislative requirements. Visiting teachers organise playgroups and outings that provide opportunities for children and educarers to socialise and learn. They provide advice and additional resources including access to the service's toy library. The service provides educarers and visiting teachers with generous professional development to keep them up to date with current theory and practice in early childhood education.

Visiting teachers: The visiting teachers effectively support educarers in their roles and responsibilities through regular visits to the home. They model positive learning interactions with children and their discussions with educarers are focused on successful outcomes for children. Visiting teachers provide educarers with support through additional resources and regular visits. The progress and development of each child forms the focus for discussion, reflection and planning.

Relationships: Relationships throughout the service are nurturing and positive. There is mutual trust and respect among visiting teachers, educarers and children. Notable strengths of relationships within the service are:

  • interactions between educarers and children that foster children’s sense of belonging and wellbeing, as well as individualised care routines for babies
  • small size of groups and high adult-to-child ratios
  • opportunities for children to explore and pursue their interest in calm, settled home environments
  • open and responsive communication between educarers and visiting teachers
  • ongoing communication and sharing of information about children's leaning and development with parents/whānau.

Relationships at all levels support children to develop their social skills and confidence as capable learners.

Programme: Children experience an inclusive programme where they learn in family home environments and through frequent outings in the local community. They also benefit from participating in regular playgroups and opportunities to interact with other educarers and children. Educarers provide children with a rich variety of activities and experiences, including visits to the local library, local parks, and places of interest. The programme is also enhanced by several educarers who have formal teaching qualifications and experience within the education sector. Learning programmes effectively promote children’s language development, mathematical knowledge and social competencies.

Home environments: In the homes visited by ERO, educarers had worked hard to provide interesting, well-organised learning environments. Thoughtful consideration is given to the placing of children in family homes. Children are confident and experience success in meaningful learning contexts.

Areas for development and review

ERO and the service agree that there is a need to further strengthen the service’s professional leadership. Particular areas to focus on are to implement:

  • effective self-review practices including monitoring of possible health and safety hazards in some home environments
  • staff appraisal for all staff
  • meaningful bicultural practices.

3 Management Assurance on Compliance Areas


Before the review, the management and staff of Bizzy Buddyz Waikato completed an ERO Home-Based Education and Care Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they had taken all reasonable steps to meet their legal obligations related to:

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

During the review, ERO checked the following items because they have a potentially high impact on outcomes for children:

  • emotional safety (including behaviour management, prevention of bullying and abuse)
  • physical safety (including behaviour management, sleeping and supervision practices; accidents and medication; hygiene and routines; travel and excursion policies and procedures)
  • staff qualifications and organisation
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

In order to improve current practices management should implement appraisal processes for all staff.

The service should ensure that:

  1. heavy furniture, fixtures and equipment that could fall or topple and cause serious image or damage are securedLicensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Centres 2008, HS6.
  2. action is taken to eliminate hazards to the safety of children caused by unprotected electrical sockets and appliances.Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Centres 2008, H11

4 Recommendation

ERO and the service management agree there is a need to access external guidance and development to strengthen professional leadership in self-review and staff-appraisal practices.

5 Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO will review the service again within three years.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

7 April 2014

About the Service



Ministry of Education profile number


Service type

Homebased Network

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 25

Boys 22

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā








Review team on site

February 2014

Date of this report

7 April 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

February 2011