Dinsdale Playcentre

Education institution number:
33004
Service type:
Playcentre
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
35
Telephone:
Address:

Frederick Drive, Frankton-Hamilton, Hamilton

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1 Evaluation of Dinsdale Playcentre

How well placed is Dinsdale 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

Dinsdale Playcentre is a parent cooperative early childhood service operating under the umbrella of the Waikato Playcentre Association (WPA) and is affiliated to the New Zealand Playcentre Federation. They provide the centre with effective governance, strategic direction, management support and adult education programmes.

The centre's philosophy is well aligned to the WPA philosophy 'Whānau tupu ngātahi - families growing together'. This includes a strategic commitment to te Tiriti o Waitangi and places high value on productive partnerships with Māori whānau.

There is a strong emphasis on parents and children learning together through play in a safe and supportive environment. The centre is has a stable roll and is licensed to cater for 25 children including 15 up to two years of age. There are a number of mixed-age sessions and a recently added tuakana session was established in response to older children’s comments and needs.

Since the 2013 ERO report the centre has made very good progress with the areas for development. Recent upgrades to the building have significantly enhanced the learning and care environment for adults and children. The centre is located on spacious and well maintained grounds.

This review was part of a cluster of 8 reviews in the Waikato Playcentre Association.

The Review Findings

Babies, toddlers and young children, and their parents and whānau demonstrate high levels of enjoyment, belonging and wellbeing. There are many opportunities for all children to make choices and explore their interests alongside highly supportive and interested adults. Māori tamariki and their whānau model culturally responsive practices. Other parents benefit from learning in the presence of whānau. The cultures of all children are valued and parents share their knowledge during sessions. All children enjoy responsive care from parents and other adults. Breastfeeding mothers have quiet and comfortable spaces to feed their babies.

Young children demonstrate high levels of social skills as they include younger siblings and other children in their play. They are able to express their ideas, opinions and creativity through complex play and projects over time. Adults are skilled at recognising and responding to young children's strengths and interests. An example of this is the way adults respond to children's comments and emerging interests. A planned session to meet their learning needs and trips and excursions into the wider community are some examples of how parents extend and enrich young children's learning.

Babies and toddlers are well integrated into the programme. The natural contribution babies and toddlers make to relationships in the centre is significant. Their responsiveness to their brothers and sisters, as well as other children and adults is reciprocated and mutually beneficial for all. These crucial and early relationships promote trusting and respectful behaviours among babies, toddlers and young children. Parents and whānau carefully monitor babies and toddlers to ensure that their specific needs are met and home routines are followed as much as possible.

Funding is made available for related professional development and the association’s use of Ka Hikitia has resulted in clear expectations for members to build their understanding, confidence and competence in te ao Māori. A weekly session on te reo and tikanga Māori hosted by the centre, aims to build parent's knowledge and capability. This session is open to members from the wider playcentre community.

Adults plan, prepare and present a wide range of high quality equipment and activities before and during the session. All resources are accessible to children. The centre has become a place of choice for parents and whānau whose children have special requirements for their nutrition. Members have developed and documented a wider understanding and clear expectations for managing food in the centre. This has resulted in a highly inclusive environment for these children and they confidently participate in the life of the centre. Adults emphasise healthy food and physical activity for all children. This has had a positive outcome on the quality of food being brought into the centre.

Centre leaders have established and sustained a culture of shared leadership, which is highly effective, includes collective decision-making and engages the skills of all centre members. There is a high proportion of members with advanced playcentre training qualifications and they all participate in ongoing course work. Parents expressed appreciation for the positive and trusting interactions and relationships amongst adults and children.

There is a good understanding of self review for continuous improvement and development. This has resulted in the delegation of clear roles and responsibilities, regular policy review and improvements to monitoring and evaluation of the way children learn and how adults plan.

Key Next Steps

There is now a need to strengthen strategic planning to align with WPA strategic goals and the centre philosophy. This should contribute to the sustainability of current centre initiatives and promote positive outcomes for all parents and their children.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Dinsdale 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 Dinsdale Playcentre will be in four years.

Lynda Pura-Watson

Deputy Chief Review Officer

10 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

Hamilton

Ministry of Education profile number

33004

Licence type

Playcentre

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

25 children, including up to 15 aged under 2

Service roll

38

Gender composition

Boys 24 Girls 14

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Cook Island Māori

Other

9

25

3

1

Review team on site

April 2016

Date of this report

10 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

June 2013

Education Review

February 2010

Education Review

November 2006

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 the Service

How well placed is the service to promote positive outcomes for children?

Dinsdale Playcentre is well placed to sustain and promote positive outcomes for all children.

Context

Dinsdale Playcentre is a parent cooperative early childhood service operating under the umbrella of the Waikato Playcentre Association (the association), and is affiliated to the New Zealand Playcentre Federation. The playcentre is situated on an attractive and well-maintained site in the suburb of Dinsdale, Hamilton and provides education and care for children from birth to school age. Currently there are 40 children on the roll, including 11 children under two years of age. The service offers four sessions per week. In late 2010, the Ministry of Education relicensed the centre under the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008.

The centre’s philosophy promotes family involvement in children’s learning and parent education. Since the 2010 ERO review, parents have responded positively to the identified area for improvement about extending parents as educators. They have engaged in whole-centre professional development to improve the programme, particularly in science, numeracy and literacy. Parents report that this focus has strengthened connections between sessions and resulted in improved learning interactions between parents and children. A high proportion of parents are now involved in course work, centre training and leadership. In addition, an experienced kaiāwhina has worked with centre members to strengthen bicultural perspectives in the environment and programme. The centre has had a significant upgrade to the building and improved the covered outdoor area.

Review Findings

Children learn alongside interested and caring adults who know them well. Centre members have established a supportive, family-like culture. This is promoting a strong sense of belonging and wellbeing for children and adults. Babies and toddlers make choices from a suitable range of equipment and materials in a safe and secure environment. They are able to explore, experiment and sustain their interests. Older children work and play alongside younger children and provide them with ideas and models for learning. Experienced members model interactions with children that foster their confidence and independence. This is promoting a culture of learning as newer members develop their confidence as educators.

Routines are kept flexible to meet the needs of children. There are many opportunities for children to celebrate their success and develop social skills. Children have ready access to attractively presented, individual portfolios that document aspects of their learning and participation in the programme. A new initiative whereby children’s interests and parent goals are displayed is contributing to increased knowledge and understanding of centre members about the programme. Regular meetings at the end of sessions provide an opportunity for members to reflect on the level of children’s participation and to plan further experiences for children.

Consideration should now be given to strengthening assessment and planning by:

  • linking children’s identified strengths and interests with plans to add complexity to their learning
  • identifying learning and progress in relation to these plans at end-of-session evaluations
  • reflecting on and documenting children’s progress and development in individual profile books.

Māori children and their whānau experience positive and reciprocal relationships with children and adults in the centre. Some aspects of tikanga Māori are included in the programme in meaningful ways. Children and their parents have participated in pōwhiri, led by knowledgeable members, to welcome visitors to their centre. The association promotes success for Māori, as Māori, through training initiatives and Puriri o Whakamaru, a group that encourages and funds local and national leadership initiatives. Centre members should continue to develop and enrich bicultural perspectives through strategies that integrate Māori values meaningfully into the centre environment, programme and interactions, and reflect Māori ways of viewing the child.

Centre leaders have clear and shared roles and responsibilities. There is a planned process for succession to leadership roles. Useful processes are in place for annual planning, financial management and aspects of self review. These are contributing to increased parent participation and centre sustainability. The association is providing appropriate governance and support for the centre. An experienced centre support worker has been recently appointed. She regularly visits the centre and provides useful reports that identify centre strengths and documents next steps for development and improvement.

Key Next Steps

Centre development and improvement would be enhanced by members having a clearer understanding of strategic and long term planning.

ERO and playcentre leaders agree that priorities for review and development are to:

  • make more effective use of Ministry of Education guiding documents to support the centre to meet regulatory requirements and strengthen self review
  • further explore Te Whāriki as a developmental curriculum
  • increase the explicit and meaningful integration of the language, culture and heritage of all centre members
  • improve the programme so that older children are able to sustain and extend their interests over time and to add challenge and complexity to their learning.

2 Legal Requirements

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Dinsdale 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.

3 Next Review

When is ERO likely to review the early childhood service again?

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in three years.

Dale Bailey National Manager Review Services Northern Region

14 May 2013

Information about the Early Childhood Service

Location

Hamilton

Ministry of Education profile number

33004

Licence type

Playcentre

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

25 children, including up to 15 aged under 2

Service roll

40

Gender composition

Boys 25 Girls 15

Ethnic composition

NZ European/ Pākehā

Māori

Samoan

Cook Island Māori

Pacific

Indian

20

9

4

3

3

1

Percentage of qualified teachers

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:1

Exceeds minimum requirements

 

Over 2

1:3

Exceeds minimum requirements

Review team on site

March 2013

Date of this report

14 May 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Accountability Review

February 2010

November 2006

September 2002

General Information about Early Childhood Reviews

About ERO Reviews

The Education Review Office (ERO) is the New Zealand government department that reviews schools and early childhood services throughout New Zealand.

Review focus

ERO's education reviews in early childhood services focus on the factors that contribute to positive learning outcomes for children. ERO evaluates how well placed the service is to make and sustain improvements for the benefit of all children at the service. To reach these findings ERO considers:

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 self review and partnerships with parents and whānau.

Review Coverage

ERO reviews do not cover every aspect of service performance and each ERO report may cover different issues. The aim is to provide information on aspects that are central to positive outcomes for children and useful to the service.