Hillmorton Nest

Education institution number:
46045
Service type:
Education and Care Service
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
43
Telephone:
Address:

52 Tankerville Road, Hoon Hay, Christchurch

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1 Evaluation of Hillmorton Nest

How well placed is Hillmorton Nest to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Hillmorton Nest is very well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Hillmorton Nest is one of four privately owned and operated centres under the umbrella of the Nest organisation. It is licensed for up to 30 children, including up to 12 under two. At the time of the review there were 51 children enrolled, 14 of whom are under two.

The centre operates out of a converted villa and caters for a diverse community. The name, 'Nest', stands for nurturing environmental, sustainable teaching, and the centre's values are ' confident, self-worth, respect, and curiosity'. There is an overarching Nest philosophy and the Hillmorton centre has collaboratively written its own teaching philosophy to align with its current practices and aspirations.

The centre has several open spaces, and children aged under two, while having a space of their own, are able to learn and play in the other spaces as well. Children move easily from indoors to outdoors.

The centre is managed by an owner/operator and a team leader. All teachers are early childhood qualified. The centre is part of an active cluster of local centres and schools.

The centre staff have taken well considered actions to address all the key next steps suggested in the 2016 ERO report.

The Review Findings

Hillmorton Nest is a welcoming, calm environment for children and their families. Children are confident to follow their interests and are engaged in their play and learning, moving easily from a solo activity to being involved with others. A wide range of adaptable resources enables children to be creative, explore, challenge themselves and develop their skills. Children play well together, showing respect for others and the environment. The outdoor area includes activities for authentic learning, such as construction, that have been initiated by the children.

The programme is highly responsive to individual interests and needs and incorporates a well-considered balance of individual and 'nest time' activities. Teachers plan collaboratively on a weekly basis, but ensure the programme is adaptable. Teachers plan specific strategies to support children's learning. They guide children in their activities to develop and extend them, particularly in relation to their goals. Learning is regularly and appropriately documented and shared with parents. A thoughtfully planned transition programme is in place to give children the confidence and skills they need to move to school.

Staff work closely with parents, using a range of methods to communicate with them and to involve them. Parent feedback is regularly sought and acted upon to inform centre operations. The diverse backgrounds of the children are recognised in the centre, and staff work with parents to incorporate home languages and customs into the centre. This is an area of ongoing development.

A considered, well informed approach to building bicultural understanding is in place. Effective links with local marae have been made and leaders and teachers continue to build their te reo and tikanga Māori knowledge to embed these authentically in centre practices.

Children up to two are well cared for by key carers. They are able to be part of the main centre but have a separate safe, calm environment suited to their needs. Teachers and parents work closely together.

The centre has been particularly proactive in responding to some children with additional health needs. All staff have had additional training to fully support these children and ensure they are able to participate in the full centre programme.

The centre is very well led and organised. Strong leadership ensures a shared vision which underpins all centre operations, with a clear focus on improvement. Well organised, effective systems and clear expectations are in place to bring a high degree of consistency. Staff are supported to build their capability and capacity and to take responsibility through targeted and well-planned professional learning.

A well-developed system of internal evaluation is in place. This focuses on the ongoing improvement of outcomes for children and the achievement of strategic goals. Staff are highly reflective and apply a critical professional lens to all they do.

Key Next Steps

Centre staff should continue to build depth of understanding of te reo and tikanga Māori to fully embed authentic bicultural approaches to all aspects of the centre.

The language, culture and identity of all children need to be further acknowledged through the environment, programme, practices and documentation.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Hillmorton Nest 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 Te Tai Tini

Southern Region

3 September 2019

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

Christchurch

Ministry of Education profile number

46045

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll

51

Gender composition

24 girls, 27 boys

Ethnic composition

Māori
NZ European/Pākehā
Other ethnicities

3
45
8

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%+

Based on funding rates

80% +

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:5

Meets minimum requirements

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

July 2019

Date of this report

3 September 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

February 2016

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 Hillmorton Nest

How well placed is Hillmorton Nest to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Hillmorton Nest is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Hillmorton Nest is one of two centres owned and operated by the centre manager. NEST stands for Nurturing Environmental Sustainable Teaching Services. This is the first ERO report for this centre.

This centre is located in an older style house which offers a home-like setting with a spacious, natural outdoor area and garden. The centre owner/manager also works as a teacher at the centre.

The centre offers care and education for infants, toddlers and young children within a small, mixed-age group setting. Siblings are able to learn and play with one another. Tuakana teina relationships, where older children care for younger children, are actively encouraged.

The centre belongs to a local community cluster of primary schools, and early childhood centres. The purpose of this learning cluster is to provide professional, education networks to support the learning of children from early childhood through to school.

The Review Findings

The centre manager and teachers provide a positive and inclusive learning environment. They have a strong, shared, commitment to the centre vision, values and philosophy that promotes a good sense of belonging for families. Children, parents and whanau are warmly welcomed, diversity is celebrated and different cultures are respected and valued.

Infants, toddlers and young children are well supported by caring teachers. There is a strong focus on children’s wellbeing, fostering respectful relationships and promoting parent and whānau involvement. Teachers work well together. They model care and respect for one another, and for children and families.

Teachers provide a child-centred curriculum that is responsive to children’s individual interests, strengths and capabilities. Children are actively involved in a wide range of interesting learning experiences. They confidently explore the environment, follow their interests and make their own discoveries. Teachers place a strong focus on working with children to develop oral language, literacy and numeracy skills. They involve children in learning conversations and activities that help them to problem solve and to think more deeply about their learning.

Children are encouraged to take responsibility for themselves and the environment and to care for others. A focus on sustainable practices helps children to learn about the natural world. Children play well alongside one another, sharing ideas and developing friendships. Visitors to the centre and excursions into the community enrich the learning programme.

The centre manager and teachers promote high levels of respectful, effective, communication and consultation with parents and whanau. Parents are well informed of the outcomes of consultation, and their children’s learning. Children’s individual learning stories provide a meaningful record of celebrations of the child’s learning journey at the centre.

The centre is well led and managed. Centre leaders promote reflective practices and provide a systematic approach to the effective operation of the service. They actively foster a positive team culture and leadership amongst the teaching team that values and builds on teachers' strengths. Centre leaders make good use of external professional development to extend management, leadership and teaching practices.

Self-review practices are well supported by centre leaders who have an in depth understanding of the dual purposes of self review for improvement and accountability. Centre leaders are now helping to empower team members to conduct self-review inquiries that result in ongoing improvement and positive outcomes for children and their families.

Key Next Steps

Centre leaders have identified and ERO agrees, that the key next steps are to:

  • strengthen appraisal processes
  • continue to develop and refine new initiatives in group programme planning and evaluation.

ERO recommends that the centre manager and teachers further develop bicultural perspectives in all documentation and practices.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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 Hillmorton Nest will be in three years.

Chris Rowe

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern (Acting)

17 February 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

Christchurch

Ministry of Education profile number

46045

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 10 aged under 2

Service roll

51

Gender composition

Boys 30; Girls 21

Ethnic composition

Pakeha

Māori

Fijian/Indian

Other

41

4

3

3

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

December 2015

Date of this report

17 February 2016

Most recent ERO report(s) 

No previous ERO reports

 

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.