Sun Valley Kindergarten

Education institution number:
5336
Service type:
Free Kindergarten
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
49
Telephone:
Address:

69 Meremere Street, Wainuiomata, Lower Hutt

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Sun Valley Kindergarten - 13/09/2018

1 Evaluation of Sun Valley Kindergarten

How well placed is Sun Valley Kindergarten 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

Sun Valley Kindergarten is located in Wainuiomata. It is licensed to provide all day education and care for up to 40 children, aged over two years. At the time of this ERO evaluation, 19 of the 60 children enrolled identify as Māori and eight as of Pacific heritage.

The kindergarten’s philosophy focuses on ‘He waka eke noa’ we’re all in this together, underpinned by the key values of whakawhanaungatanga, tikanga rua, motuhake and whāngai for supporting children’s learning.

Since the 2015 ERO evaluation, a new head teacher as well as a new teaching team have been appointed. All teachers are qualified. Day-to-day operation of the centre is the responsibility of the head teacher.

The kindergarten is part of the Enviroschools programme. This promotes environmental sustainability.

Sun Valley Kindergarten is one of 19 services in the Lower Hutt region, governed and managed by Hutt City Kindergarten Association (the association). Since the June 2015 ERO report, a new senior leadership team has been appointed. This includes a general manager and two senior teachers, guided by a team leader. The governance board has also undergone significant changes.

The previous ERO report identified key next steps for the kindergarten. These included: promoting Māori and Pacific success; assessment and planning for learning; and strengthening evaluation practices. Good progress has been made in addressing these areas.

The association also had some areas for development including: strategic planning; cultural responsiveness to Māori and Pacific families; evaluation and the appraisal process. Good progress has been made in these areas.

This review was part of a cluster of eight kindergartens in the Hutt City Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Children participate in a purposeful play-based programme. Learning spaces encourage them to explore, interact, experiment and have fun. The outdoor space effectively reflects the kindergarten’s focus on environmental sustainability. Planting, nurturing and harvesting fruit and vegetables enriches the natural environment. Working independently or in groups is fostered throughout the kindergarten. Teachers work alongside children supporting and affirming their play and learning.

The kindergarten appropriately supports children with additional learning needs. Teachers work in partnership with the families, whānau and outside agencies, when appropriate, to plan and monitor their progress.

Kaupapa Māori practices are well established in the kindergarten. Community expertise is used effectively to enrich the programme through weekly waiata Māori sessions. These are popular activities. Children's culture, language and identity are highly valued and celebrated. A key next step is encouraging a greater use of te reo Māori in everyday practice in the kindergarten. In addition leaders should consider ways they can weave a place-based curriculum that promotes and celebrates te ao Māori places unique to Wainuiomata.

A new system for planning children’s learning is currently being developed. Parents, whānau and teachers co-construct learning goals for their child’s individual needs. Leaders and teachers should consider how they can further enhance this framework by including:

  • specific learning outcomes for children

  • identification of teaching strategies that support learning

  • the use of assessment documentation to clearly show progression towards children's learning goals.

Children sense of belonging is well supported by teachers as they transition into the kindergarten and moving on to school.

Clear internal evaluation expectations are provided for staff. Senior teachers work collaboratively with the teaching team to build their evaluative understanding. Teachers are beginning to build their knowledge and understanding of how they can evaluate the impact of their practices on children’s learning. A continued focus on outcomes for children is important.

A comprehensive, well-considered appraisal process is in place. Teachers challenge themselves to continually improve their practice through strategic goalsetting and professional learning. Plans are in place to further strengthen this system by developing an inquiry-based approach to teacher appraisal. ERO's external evaluation confirms this direction.

The governance board includes a wide range of community representation and useful skills. The board and senior leadership team work well together, with a shared commitment to meeting its goals and objectives for the benefit of children, whānau and community. Resource allocation clearly aligns with this focus. The board and senior leadership actively seek equitable and inclusive ways to eliminate barriers to children’s learning and wellbeing.

ERO, the governance board and senior leaders agree that the association's next steps are to:

  • monitor, evaluate and report on the extent to which children and their families’ outcomes are improved though systems, processes and initiatives. This should include consideration of impact on specific priority groups

  • consider ways to increase opportunities for whānau to actively contribute to the association’s operation and strategic direction.

The association's senior teaching team is reflective and highly improvement focused. Robust, linked systems and processes have been skilfully developed to guide and grow teacher capability and positively impact children’s learning. Leaders successfully foster a collective sense of responsibility for the vision, values and mission of the association.

Key Next Steps

ERO and kindergarten teachers agree that their priority next steps are to:

  • enhance the planning for learning framework

  • develop a place-based curriculum, as well as encouraging greater use of te reo Māori

  • continue to build internal evaluation knowledge and understanding.

The association agrees they should increase the focus on:

  • measuring outcomes for children and their families

  • developing whānau and community partnership practices.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Sun Valley Kindergarten 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 Sun Valley Kindergarten will be in three years.

Alan Wynyard

Director Review & Improvement Services

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

13 September 2018

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

Lower Hutt

Ministry of Education profile number

5336

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children aged over two years

Service roll

60

Gender composition

Boys 32, Girls 28

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Pacific
Asian

19
30
8
3

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%+

Based on funding rates

80% +

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

August 2018

Date of this report

13 September 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

June 2015

Education Review

August 2012

Education Review

March 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.

Sun Valley Kindergarten - 22/06/2015

1 Evaluation of Sun Valley Kindergarten

How well placed is Sun Valley Kindergarten 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

Sun Valley Kindergarten provides education and care for children from two to five years of age. Three days a week there is the option of an extended six-hour day for older children, and two mornings a week are offered for younger children. The kindergarten is licensed for up to 40 children.

The teaching team is fully qualified and the programme is further assisted by support staff. Several staff changes since the last review have impacted on the progress of change. The kindergarten has a positive reporting history with ERO.

The August 2012 ERO report identified areas requiring further development. These included assessment, the quality of interactions and self review. The new teaching team is working to address these areas.

The kindergarten is governed by the Hutt City Kindergarten Association (the association). Two professional practice managers (PPMs) are employed by the association to provide professional support and guidance to teachers. Since the previous review there have been several changes to the General Manager.

This review was part of a cluster of ten kindergarten reviews in the Hutt City Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Children engage within a play-based early childhood programme. Their independence is promoted. Teachers actively promote the concept of tuakana teina, where children support their peers. Teachers know children well and appropriately support their developing social and emotional competence. They work alongside children, extending and challenging them in their learning. Inclusive practice is promoted and children with additional needs are well supported and monitored. Music and dance provide an extension to the programme.

The head teacher takes a collaborative approach to leading this team. As the team is recently established, it is timely to review the kindergarten philosophy in consultation with whānau. Once established, indicators of quality practice should be identified and used to guide the kindergarten programme and evaluate outcomes for children.

Te reo me ngā tikanga Māori are well used within the programme. Teachers remain committed to ongoing learning. Success for Māori and Pacific families should be further enhanced through consulting about the cultural aspirations they may have for their children.

Children’s profiles show their participation in the programme and developing friendships. Teachers acknowledge that assessment, planning and evaluation require strengthening. ERO agrees and identifies a key next steps is for teachers to analyse the assessment information in greater depth and show how they plan to add depth and complexity to children’s learning. This should help to better reflect children progression of learning over time. Consideration should also be given to how children’s culture, language and identity can be reflected and celebrated through these assessment documents.

Group planning provides a shared direction for the programme. This approach should be strengthened through clearly stating the learning intention of the programme and regularly evaluating the impact for children to inform ongoing planning.

Self review is developing and results in improved outcomes for children. Teachers should continue to build their understanding of the process and consider more regular use of self review for ongoing improvement. In addition, they should build their capacity to evaluate their practice. This should provide additional information to judge the effectiveness of kindergarten operations and practice to inform decision making.

The association is part way through the implementation of a new approach to appraisal. Once fully established this should assist leaders to provide a robust, supportive and developmental process. Leaders should then undertake regular monitoring of how well appraisal is being implemented in each kindergarten.

The board receives a range of useful information. A key next step is for leaders to provide more evaluative reporting to assist in decision making and ongoing resourcing. The strategic plan provides a vision and shared direction to guide development. Establishing clearer measures of success should strengthen evaluation of progress towards goals. In addition, strategies that promote cultural responsiveness to Māori and Pacific families should be highlighted in strategic documents.

The PPMs provide half-yearly written reports. These provide information about how the kindergarten is meeting legislative requirements, and at times, make recommendations. These reports should be strengthened by providing critical feedback on the quality of teaching and the effectiveness of the curriculum in improving outcomes for children. 

The association provides guidance and support to teachers for continuous improvement of teaching and learning. This includes:

  • a useful framework and clear expectations, that guide kindergarten operations and support the services to meet legislative and health and safety requirements
  • opportunities for professional learning and development for staff
  • sound support for provisionally registered teachers.

At the time of this review the association was involved in a process of a formal review to determine the future direction of Hutt Kindergartens. ERO identified that, within the current operating model, the capacity of senior staff to provide targeted support that promotes ongoing improvement to teaching and learning is limited.

Key Next Steps

ERO identified that priorities for improvement should include:

  • consulting with parents about their cultural aspirations to promote success for Māori and Pacific learners
  • improving assessment, planning and evaluation practices
  • using self review more regularly and strengthening the evaluative aspect.

The association should:

  • strengthen the measures used to evaluate the progress of the strategic plan
  • provide evaluative reports to support decision making
  • at a strategic level, identify strategies to promote cultural responsiveness to Māori and Pacific families
  • monitor each kindergarten to ensure the robust implementation of the appraisal process.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Sun Valley Kindergarten 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 Sun Valley Kindergarten will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

22 June 2015

2 Information about the Early Childhood Service

Location

Wainuiomata, Lower Hutt

Ministry of Education profile number

5336

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, aged over two years

Service roll

43

Gender composition

Girls 24,

Boys 19

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Pacific

Other ethnic groups

6

30

2

5

Percentage of qualified teachers

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2015

Date of this report

22 June 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

August 2012

 

Education Review

March 2009

 

Education Review

February 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.