Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands

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

21 Bellingham Crescent, Fordlands, Rotorua

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Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands - 20/12/2016

Here is the latest report for the Governing Organisation that this service is part of.


1 Evaluation of Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands

How well placed is Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands 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.


Central Kids Kindergartens – Fordlands operates under the umbrella of Central North Island Kindergarten Trust (CNIKT). The kindergarten is licensed for 40 children from two years to school age. The significant majority of children enrolled are tangata whenua. Restructuring of kindergarten hours in May 2016 has extended opening hours from 8.00 am to 3.30 pm, five days a week, throughout the year.

The kindergarten's draft philosophy outlines culturally responsive practices that foster children's wellbeing and identity as active learners. Central to this philosophy are the introduction of the kaiawhina role, manaakitanga and the richly resourced environment.

Since ERO's 2013 review teachers have undertaken professional learning and development in self review, assessment, teaching as inquiry and appraisal. Significant development has been achieved in areas of relationship building to embed practices that have enriched the curriculum, reflecting children's language, culture, identity, and honouring mana whenua.

Kindergarten operations are well-supported by CNIKT. The trust’s strategic direction sets out the service’s vision, expected educational outcomes, and values. It also defines the strategies for delivering the principles and strands of the early childhood curriculum, Te Whāriki, and for respecting Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Compliance and regulatory requirements are well monitored by professional leaders. Policies and procedures support the kindergarten to meet regulation requirements and management expectations. The professional leaders work alongside head teachers to support their leadership roles and provide guidance, and mentor teachers as part of the appraisal process. Kindergarten teachers have opportunities to attend professional development designed to grow their teaching and leadership skills.

Personnel matters are well managed. The trust has undertaken a long-term review of teacher appraisal in consultation with teachers. This is enabling them to respond to the expectations of the Education Council and increase the depth of teachers’ reflections about their practice. The trust has also responded effectively to the Vulnerable Children’s Act, and is well placed to complete required changes to policies and practices for the protection of children.

This review was part of a cluster of six reviews in Central North Island Kindergarten Trust.

The Review Findings

The Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands curriculum clearly responds to the language culture and identity of all children. There is an understanding of who children are, where they are from, and what influences their learning. Strong relationships have been built with kindergarten whānau and the Fordlands community. The kindergarten benefits from contributions and guidance from key people in the community. Through the kindergarten pepeha, children are able to make meaningful connections with Atua, the maunga, awa and local pūrakau. Values of manaakitanga, wairuatanga, whakawhanaungatanga and kaitiakitanga clearly underpin the curriculum. Children are strong in their identity, and their knowledge is affirmed as valued and relevant learning.

Teachers have created a welcoming, homely and resource rich environment. Within this environment children are able to learn through play. Teachers allow time and space for children to pursue interests, set their own challenges and problem solve. They encourage children to develop skills in literacy, mathematics and natural science. The environment strongly reflects culturally relevant symbols, signs and texts, which form the basis of children's literacy learning. Children also benefit from the many opportunities to learn from and nurture Papatūānuku within the kindergarten and local community.

Interactions between teachers, children and whānau are warm, positive and reciprocal. The introduction of the kaiawhina role is pivotal in developing deep and genuine relationships, and supporting positive transitions from home to kindergarten. Consistent teaching approaches to positive guidance are contributing to the calm, settled environment, and children's developing social skills and confidence. Tuakana/teina relationships are integral to the positive learning culture in the kindergarten. Children confidently engage with one another and adults, and demonstrate a strong sense of belonging.

Focused professional learning and development is strengthening teachers' practice. The robust appraisal process and ongoing constructive critique from the professional leader is supporting teachers to reflect on and refine their practice. An important development since ERO's 2013 review is the introduction of a more culturally responsive assessment framework and practice. Teachers have also given priority to learning te reo Māori and are committed to furthering this learning. They are well supported by kindergarten whānau to increasingly use and understand te reo and tikanga Māori, and develop culturally responsive teaching strategies.

Key Next Steps

Teachers have developed a draft philosophy statement for Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands. It is now important for them to consider ways to make the philosophy visible, and include whānau views and aspirations for their children as part of the consultation process.

Sustained learning and development has assisted teachers to implement self review. Further development of self-review processes should enable teachers to better understand the implications for their practice and outcomes for children.

The kindergarten leader needs to deliberately use the annual planning framework to develop a more strategic approach to the annual plan, ensuring a systematic and sustainable approach to kindergarten improvement. This was also identified as an area for improvement in ERO's 2013 report.

A significant priority for CNIKT is to build the capacity of kindergarten leadership to develop professional practice within the team. This development should enable teachers' to more effectively extend their teaching strategies, and to add further complexity to children's learning.


ERO recommends that CNIKT, in consultation with the Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands teaching team, develops an action plan to fully address the key next steps identified in this report.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands 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 Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands will be in three years.

Lynda Pura-Watson

Deputy Chief Review Officer

20 December 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 

Ministry of Education profile number5172
Licence typeFree Kindergarten
Licensed underEducation (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008
Number licensed for40 children, aged over 2
Service roll34
Gender compositionGirls 22 Boys 12
Ethnic composition




Cook Island





Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%+

Based on funding rates

80% +
Reported ratios of staff to childrenOver 21:10Meets minimum requirements
Review team on siteNovember 2016
Date of this report20 December 2016
Most recent ERO report(s)Supplementary ReviewFebruary 2013
Education ReviewOctober 2012
Education ReviewDecember 2009

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.

Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands - 03/02/2014

1 Background


A Supplementary Review is undertaken at the discretion of a National Manager, Review Services in the Education Review Office (ERO).

A supplementary review evaluates the extent and effectiveness of actions a centre has taken towards addressing issues specified in a previous education review and/or any additional areas identified since that review.

Terms of Reference

This supplementary review is based on an evaluation of the performance of the Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands governing body and management in relation to areas identified in the October 2012 ERO report or issues identified since that review. The terms of reference for this review are to investigate:

  • self-review practices
  • kindergarten leadership
  • consultation with families and the community
  • planning assessment and evaluation.

2 Evaluation Findings


Fordlands Kindergarten is located in Rotorua and licensed to provide education and care for up to 40 children over the age of two. At the time of this ERO review there were 46 children on the roll, including 23 children from a number of iwi in the area and 3 children of Pacific Island descent.

The kindergarten operates under the umbrella of the Central North Island Kindergarten Trust (CNIKT) previously known as the Central North Island Kindergarten Association (CNIKA), which provides professional support for governance, administration and personnel management.

The 2012 report identified the need to strengthen quality assurance processes, self review, assessment and planning. As a result of these concerns ERO signalled a supplementary review of the kindergarten within 12 months.

After the resignation of the head teacher at the end of 2012 careful consideration was given to the appointment of acting head teachers with particular leadership capabilities in the areas for improvement identified in the ERO report. Continuity for children and families was maintained through a planned approach to induction and transition for new staff members by the dedicated teachers who remained through this time of change.

In the middle of 2013, the new head teacher joined an experienced team and there are now four fully registered, full-time, permanent teachers in the kindergarten.

As a result of these positive improvements Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands is now well placed to provide positive outcomes for children and their families.

Areas of progress

The CNIKT have effectively managed a significant number of positive improvements, including measured and strategic changes to leadership and teaching staff, since the previous review. The CNIKT management team, and in particular the focused professional leader, provided significant and effective support and continuity for the kindergarten during a time of change.

Teachers have increased their knowledge, capability and confidence through extensive, ongoing and appropriate targeted professional learning and development, mentoring and support. These effective change-management strategies have led to a welcoming and inclusive atmosphere for families/whānau and aiga, and significant improvements in learning opportunities for children.

The new and, experienced head teacher has worked effectively to establish a collegial and cooperative team committed to continuing to strengthen the quality of teaching and learning.

Targeted professional development in self review has resulted in significant improvements to the quality and quantity of self review undertaken by teachers. The outcome of this work has addressed the area of non-compliance in relation to self review identified in the previous ERO report. This places the kindergarten in a good position to sustain and improve the quality of education and care for children.

Teachers actively promote parent involvement in the life of the kindergarten. This is evident through increased opportunities for parents to:

  • express their views and aspirations
  • participate in trips and celebrations
  • contribute to the kindergarten programme and play alongside their children
  • discuss children’s learning with teachers.

ERO observed significant improvements in teaching practice. There is now a good range of consistent and positive strategies that engage children in meaningful learning. The environment is well planned and presented, and enables children to access a wide variety of high-quality equipment and materials.

Progress in strengthening the assessment, planning and evaluation process is evident in:

  • the development of shared expectations for teaching and learning
  • children’s learning and development that is displayed in the kindergarten and actively shared with children and their families
  • a responsive curriculum that includes flexible routines.

Improvements to the programme include children having opportunities to explore, problem solve, sustain their play, and pursue their interests. They are building independence, self management and social skills to support them in their play and learning.

Areas for further improvement

The CNIKT and ERO agree that there is a need for centre leaders to continue to:

  • support the head teacher and teaching team to sustain the progress made
  • further develop partnerships to formally consult with the parents/ whānau/aiga and community to build on the relationships that have been established
  • enrich the programme to reflect the language culture and identity of children
  • develop assessment, planning and evaluation processes that respond to the learning needs of older children
  • strengthen the strategic approach of the annual plan to ensure a more systematic and sustainable approach to improvement.

ERO has confidence that the kindergarten has made sufficient progress and has appropriate support in place to sustain and improve its performance. Central Kids Kindergartens - Fordlands is well placed to promote positive outcomes for children and therefore ERO will return in 3 years.

3 Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO will review the service again as part of the regular review cycle.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

3 February 2014

Information about the Service



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 24

Boys 22

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā







Percentage of qualified teachers


Review team on site

November 2013

Date of this report

3 February 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

October 2012

December 2009

December 2006