Bright Beginnings Montessori

Education institution number:
Service type:
Education and Care Service
Not Applicable
Total roll:

183 Brookside Road, Rolleston

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Bright Beginnings Montessori 

1 ERO’s Judgements 

Akarangi | Quality Evaluation evaluates the extent to which this early childhood service has the learning and organisational conditions to support equitable and excellent outcomes for all learners. Te Ara Poutama Indicators of quality for early childhood education: what matters most are the basis for making judgements about the effectiveness of the service in achieving equity and excellence for all learners. Judgements are made in relation to the Outcomes Indicators, Learning and Organisational Conditions. The Evaluation Judgement Rubric derived from the indicators, is used to inform ERO’s judgements about this service’s performance in promoting equity and excellence.  

ERO’s judgements for ​Bright Beginnings Montessori​ are as follows: 

Outcome Indicators 

(What the service knows about outcomes for learners) 

Whakaū Embedding​ 

Ngā Akatoro Domains 

Learning Conditions 
Organisational Conditions 

​​Whakaū Embedding​ 

​​Whakaū Embedding​ 

2 Context of the Service 

Bright Beginnings Montessori is family owned and governed. It serves a highly diverse cultural community. A significant number of tamariki Māori attend. The owner works closely with the centre manager, who has responsibility for day-to-day operations. Most staff, including the owner, are certificated early childhood teachers. Good progress has been made in addressing the recommendations from the 2020 ERO report. 

3 Summary of findings 

The curriculum is inclusive and based on the strands and learning outcomes from Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, and aspects of the Montessori philosophy. The enacted bicultural curriculum is established. Leaders and teachers acknowledge that working more closely with local iwi will further enhance their understandings of a localised curriculum. 

Teachers are highly supportive of children’s transitions into, within and beyond the centre. Children with additional needs are very well supported to achieve their individualised goals and plans for learning. Assessment processes involve parents and whānau by taking their aspirations and wishes into account when planning for learning. These processes recognise what children know, their interests and intended learning. Teaching strategies are planned to optimise children’s learning opportunities. Teachers are yet to fully embed the evaluation of children’s learning to show their progress over time. 

Leaders mentor and coach teachers and staff to help develop their teaching and leadership capabilities. They continue to establish and maintain organisational conditions to support problem solving, debate and meaningful conversations. Leaders and teachers use a deliberate, systematic approach to self-review and internal evaluation that results in changes to practice, and positive impacts on outcomes for children. It is timely to extend these processes to include specific monitoring of groups of children to show what is working well and for whom. 

There is a collaborative and coherent approach to governance and management. Those involved are open to learning, reflective and build positive relationships with and among staff, teachers and whānau. They place the learning and wellbeing of children at the centre of decision making. Advocating for children and whānau to source and establish responsive partnerships with external agencies is a natural part of supporting learning and development. 

4 Improvement actions 

​Bright Beginnings Montessori​ will include the following actions in its Quality Improvement Planning: 

  • Further develop the localised bicultural curriculum for all children, in association with whānau Māori and local iwi
  • Make visible in the learning documentation of tamariki Māori, aspects of the enacted curriculum that value and support Māori success as Māori
  • Continue to fully embed the evaluation of children’s learning and development to show their progress and learning over time. 
  • Include a stronger evaluative focus in internal evaluation processes on outcomes for specific groups of children, to know what is working well and for whom. 

5 Management Assurance on Legal Requirements 

Before the review, the staff and management of ​Bright Beginnings Montessori​ completed an ERO 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; safety checking; teacher registration; ratios) 
  • relevant evacuation procedures and practices. 

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

​Patricia Davey 
Director of Early Childhood Education (ECE) 

​22 May 2024​   

6 About the Early Childhood Service  

Early Childhood Service Name ​Bright Beginnings Montessori​ 
Profile Number​45483​ 
LocationRolleston, Christchurch​ 
Service type  ​Education and care service​ 
Number licensed for  84 children, including up to 24 aged under 2 
Percentage of qualified teachers  ​80-99%​ 
Service roll 98 
Review team on site March 2024 
Date of this report ​22 May 2024​ 
Most recent ERO report(s) ​Education Review, June 2020​; ​Education Review​, July 2015. 

Bright Beginnings Montessori - 16/06/2020

1 Evaluation of Bright Beginnings Montessori

How well placed is Bright Beginnings Montessori to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Bright Beginnings Montessori is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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


Bright Beginnings Montessori is open five days per week for full-day sessions. The centre is privately owned and is operated as a family business. It has been under new ownership since November 2017. It is licensed for up to 84 children, including up to 24 children under two years of age.

The centre's philosophy was recently reviewed. It is underpinned by Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, and the Montessori philosophy. The centre states that its vision is to 'be a centre of excellence that seeks to begin to realise the immense potential within all as we grow independent learners who can make a valued contribution to their world'.

There have been recent and significant changes in teaching staff since the July 2015 ERO review, including a new leadership team and governance group. Most teachers are fully qualified early childhood educators, and some hold an additional Montessori qualification. Other significant changes since the previous ERO review include: review and update of strategic documents, a new teacher appraisal system, the introduction of online assessment and communication tools, a greater emphasis on creative play for children and improvements to the facilities and exterior play areas.

The centre is part of the Ngā Peka o Tauwharekākaho Kāhui Ako|Community of Learning.

The Review Findings

Children are confident and demonstrate a strong sense of belonging. They are well supported by staff who foster positive, warm and respectful relationships between the adults and children. Children under two years of age experience a calm and nurturing environment with adults who know them well. Readily available resources ensure all children can use a wide variety of equipment that supports creative and physical development for learning. Children have access to a large outdoor area that fosters co-operative play, physical challenge and provides stimulating sensory environments for learning.

Teachers engage thoughtfully with children, parents and whānau to establish learning priorities for individual children. They build on a range of strategies that are underpinned by the Montessori philosophy and extend children's skills and ideas. Children are well supported by staff to build social competence skills which are reinforced by clear and consistent routines. Teachers thoughtfully engage with children, following their interests and regularly assessing and planning for children's important learning.

Flexible structures support transitions within and beyond the centre. The transitions are responsive, and child paced.

Improvement-focused teachers and leaders engage with professional learning to support teacher appraisal and teaching as inquiry, in ways that are aligned to strategic priorities. Sound governance and management practices are linked to an evaluation framework. Clear and effective systems and practices support the smooth running of all centre operations. Leaders are proactive in developing leadership capability within the teaching team and, as a result, are distributing responsibility across the centre.

Key Next Steps

Processes to formalise consultation and the gathering of parent aspirations could be strengthened by teachers and leaders to support children's learning and inform ongoing improvement.

Leaders and teachers:

  • need to further develop planning and assessment to ensure consistency of practice across the centre
  • should continue to strengthen bicultural practices, with a particular focus on promoting success for Māori children, as Māori.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Bright Beginnings Montessori 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.

Dr Lesley Patterson

Director Review and Improvement Services (Southern)

Southern Region - Te Tai Tini

16 June 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



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

84 children, including up to 24 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 53%, Boys 47%

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā
Other ethnicities


Percentage of qualified teachers

80% +

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

December 2019

Date of this report

16 June 2020

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

July 2015

Education Review

April 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.