Summerhill Early Learning

Education institution number:
Service type:
Free Kindergarten
Not Applicable
Total roll:

203 Ruapehu Drive, Summerhill-Palmerston North, Palmerston North

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Summerhill Early Learning

ERO’s Akanuku | Assurance Review reports provide information about whether a service meets and maintains regulatory standards. Further information about Akanuku | Assurance Reviews is included at the end of this report.

ERO’s Judgement

Regulatory standards

ERO’s judgement



Premises and facilities


Health and safety


Governance, management and administration


At the time of the review, ERO found the service was taking reasonable steps to meet regulatory standards.


Summerhill Early Learning is one of 25 services administered by Ruahine Kindergarten Association. The service began operating in March 2020. Children learn in three aged-based rooms. A centre manager is responsible for day-to-day operation. This is the first ERO review of the service.

Summary of Review Findings

Children experience meaningful, positive interactions with teachers that enhance their learning and nurture reciprocal relationships. Their preferences are respected and they are involved in decisions about their learning experiences. The curriculum provides a range of learning opportunities, is language rich and promotes children’s developing social competencies.

Assessment, planning and evaluation demonstrates an understanding of children’s interests and learning. Whānau aspirations are acknowledged, and opportunities provided for whānau to be involved in decision making concerning their child’s learning. Ongoing evaluation contributes to the service maintaining and improving the quality of its education and care.

Key Next Steps         

Next steps include:

  • work with whānau to determine and define priorities for children’s learning
  • continue to increase opportunities children have to hear and speak te reo Māori in meaningful learning contexts
  • continue to embed and add depth to the localised curriculum and assessment, planning and evaluation practices.

Next ERO Review

The next ERO review is likely to be an Akarangi | Quality Evaluation.

Shelley Booysen

Acting Director Review and Improvement Services (Central)

Central Region | Te Tai Pūtahi Nui

1 February 2022 

Information About the Service

Early Childhood Service Name  Summerhill Early Learning 
Profile Number 47828
Location Palmerston North

Service type

Education and care service

Number licensed for

65 children, including up to 20 aged under 2.

Percentage of qualified teachers


Service roll


Ethnic composition

Māori 16, NZ European/Pākehā 37, Chinese 5, Indian 4, Other ethnic groups 10.

Review team on site

December 2021

Date of this report

1 February 2022

Most recent ERO report(s)

First ERO review of the service.

General Information about Assurance Reviews

All services are licensed under the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008. The legal requirements for early childhood services also include the Licensing Criteria for Education and Care Services 2008.

Services must meet the standards in the regulations and the requirements of the licensing criteria to gain and maintain a licence to operate.

ERO undertakes an Akanuku | Assurance Review process in any centre-based service:

  • having its first ERO review – including if it is part of a governing organisation
  • previously identified as ‘not well placed’ or ‘requiring further development’
  • that has moved from a provisional to a full licence
  • that have been re-licenced due to a change of ownership
  • where an Akanuku | Assurance Review process is determined to be appropriate.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

All early childhood services are required to promote children’s health and safety and to regularly review their compliance with legal requirements. Before the review, the staff and management of a service 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.

As part of an Akanuku | Assurance Review ERO assesses whether the regulated standards are being met. In particular, ERO looks at a 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 certification; ratios)
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

As part of an Akanuku | Assurance Review ERO also gathers and records evidence through:

  • discussions with those involved in the service
  • consideration of relevant documentation, including the implementation of health and safety systems
  • observations of the environment/premises, curriculum implementation and teaching practice.