Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner

Education institution number:
5457
Service type:
Free Kindergarten
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
42
Telephone:
Address:

25 Dryden Street, Sumner, Christchurch

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Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner - 26/03/2015

1. Evaluation of Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner

How well placed is Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Kidsfirst Kindergartens is very well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Kidsfirst Kindergarten Sumner is one of 62 kindergartens governed and managed by Canterbury Westland Kindergarten Association Incorporated, trading as Kidsfirst Kindergartens. All Kidsfirst Kindergartens share a common vision and values.

Children from two years old to school age can attend kindergarten for up to six hours a day during the four kindergarten terms. The kindergarten is located beside Sumner School and has a close relationship with the school.

Since the June 2011 ERO review, the kindergarten has made significant progress to meet the recommendations in the ERO report. Self review, child assessment and planning are now useful and provide good direction for learning and teaching. The bicultural dimension of the programme has also been significantly strengthened.

This review was part of a cluster of 18 kindergarten reviews.

The Review Findings

Children benefit from the strong learning partnerships established between the teachers and the families. Home and kindergarten learning are closely connected. Teachers actively seek parent aspirations, views and insights of their children as learners. They make effective use of this information to extend children’s learning and social confidence.

The children make significant contributions to the programme and their learning. Teachers attentively listen to children and ask appropriate questions to find out more about children’s interests. Teachers use this information to help children develop their higher-level thinking, reasoning and problem-solving skills.

Children work well together and are inclusive of all other children. A feature is the way older children include younger children in their play. The session structure and teacher practices successfully promote younger and older siblings playing together and children developing friendships across age groups.

Te reo and tikanga Māori are successfully woven into all aspects of the programme and kindergarten documents. Children are proud of New Zealand’s bicultural heritage and willingly share their new knowledge with their families. Families from all nationalities work with the teachers to continue to strengthen the inclusion of the Māori language and culture within the kindergarten environment.

Teachers are progressive in their thinking and focused on further improving their practices and learning outcomes for all children. Leadership is shared across the team and individual teacher strengths and interests are well used to benefit the children, families and wider community.

The Kidsfirst Kindergartens Association

All kindergartens in this cluster have spacious indoor and outdoor areas and are well resourced to meet the interests and learning needs of their children. In most of these kindergartens, environments and resources:

  • encourage children’s critical thought, wonderment and inquiry

  • provide challenges, stimulation and social support for children, families and the wider communities

  • promote opportunities for children to learn about sustainable practices.

Kidsfirst Kindergartens provides significant support for priority learners and their families. Teachers in kindergartens with priority learners receive considerable extra training and funding to ensure the needs of these learners are well met.

Kidsfirst Kindergartens has a strong commitment to te ao Māori (the Māori world view) and ensuring that their Education Service Managers (ESMs) and teachers are competent and confident in te reo and tikanga Māori. In this cluster of kindergartens, a bicultural curriculum is in place and bicultural practices are highly evident. The contribution from parents of Māori children is highly valued and Māori children are well supported to achieve success as Māori.

The association has a well-understood vision, and highly effective strategic and annual planning systems, policies and procedures. It has strong leadership and collaboration across all levels of the organisation.

There is a thorough and well-understood process of self review at all levels of Kidsfirst Kindergartens.

The skills and knowledge of the CEO, board and senior leaders are regularly sought by other kindergarten associations and early childhood services nationally and internationally.

The highly experienced and skilled trustees bring a good range of expertise to support their decision making. They have a wide knowledge and understanding of Kidsfirst and are very focused on achieving their goals. Their priorities are strongly linked to providing high-quality learning and care for all children.

The strategic leadership team members have a good breadth and depth of knowledge across their various areas of expertise. They value each other’s contributions and use their wide range of knowledge and skills to ensure effective operation of the service.

The ESMs show a high level of commitment to Kidsfirst and the implementation of the Kidsfirst vision, policies and expectations. They successfully challenge and use each other's strengths to meet the goals of Kidsfirst for high-quality learning and teaching in each kindergarten.

Kidsfirst has a well-developed evaluation process that is effectively used to identify the strengths, progress and areas for further development in each of its kindergartens. This allows the ESMs to successfully monitor how well each kindergarten is providing high-quality outcomes for children.

High-quality professional development is closely aligned to leaders and teachers achieving the Kidsfirst vision and goals. In this cluster, this is most evident in the well-developed, understood and useful self-review processes, child assessment and planning practices and effective use of a range of technologies.

Key Next Steps

The Kidsfirst Kindergartens’ managers have identified, and ERO agrees that the key next steps are:

  • to further align the existing appraisal process for ESMS, head teachers and teachers to recent developments in Kidsfirst Kindergartens' quality improvement programme ensuring it is consistently achieving its vision to provide high-quality learning and teaching for all children

  • to continue to review kindergarten practices and premises to make sure that they meet the changing needs of their communities.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner 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 Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner will be in four years.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer-Southern

Southern Region

26 March 2015

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

5457

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

36 children, aged two years and over

Service roll

46

Gender composition

Boys 25

Girls 21

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Asian

British

Dutch

Hungarian

Czech

0

37

1

3

2

2

1

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

November 2014

Date of this report

26 March 2015

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review

June 2011

 

Education Review

November 2007

 

Education Review

June 2004

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.

Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner - 30/06/2011

1. The Education Review Office (ERO) Evaluation

Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner is located in the Sumner suburb of Christchurch. This kindergarten operates on a sessional basis to provide care and education for 30 children over the age of two. All teachers are fully qualified and registered.

It is one of 63 kindergartens (including one early learning centre) administered by the Canterbury Westland Kindergarten Association Incorporated trading as Kidsfirst Kindergartens.

Positive features of this kindergarten are:

  • high quality interactions and teaching practices that encourage and extend children’s independence, creativity and curiosity
  • the range of learning experiences which respond to children’s interests and reflect and utilise the local environment and resources
  • the strong bicultural focus within the environment and programme.

Teachers know the children, their families and the community well. They value and encourage families and whānau to share their whākakpāpā. Close links with the local schools support children’s transitions from the kindergarten. The children regularly visit the local school to use the library and for important school events.

The next step for the teachers is to review and further consolidate programme planning, assessment and self-review practices to increase their quality and usefulness of these processes.

The association is well organised and managed. It provides clear policies and procedures, a comprehensive framework for monitoring health and safety. The association incorporates management support in the form of education services managers and a manager of kindergarten operations who work in partnership with teachers providing ongoing leadership and professional development.

This review occurred at a time when the association and its kindergartens were responding to issues associated with the Canterbury earthquakes relating to children, family, personnel and property. The association has been proactive in addressing these challenges.

Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the kindergarten again in three years.

2. Review Priorities

The Focus of the Review

Before the review, the management of Kidsfirst Kindergarten Sumner was invited to consider its priorities for review using guidelines and resources provided by ERO. ERO also used documentation provided by the kindergarten to contribute to the scope of the review.

The detailed priorities for review were then determined following a discussion between the ERO review team and the management and staff. This discussion focused on existing information held by the kindergarten (including self-review information) and the extent to which potential issues for review contributed to positive outcomes for children at Kidsfirst Kindergarten Sumner.

All ERO education reviews in early childhood focus on the quality of education. For ERO this includes the quality of:

  • the programme provided for children
  • the learning environment
  • the interactions between children and adults.

ERO’s findings in these areas are set out below.

The Quality of Education

Background

The kindergarten’s vision is to develop a community of learners where everyone is treated with respect. Teachers aim to encourage children to be critical, creative, self-directed learners.

Areas of strength
Relationships

Teachers, children and their families demonstrate caring and respectful relationships. Teachers know the children and families well. Children are cooperative and inclusive of each other. ERO observed children enjoying playing and learning together.

Teachers foster strong links with the community. They make good use of local resources and encourage parents to share family histories and connections to the local area. They have positive relationships with the local schools and new entrant teachers. Children are well supported in transitioning to school.

Teaching practices

Children’s learning and development are well supported by high quality interactions with teachers. Parents and teachers have high expectations for learning and behaviour. Teachers use a good range of effective teaching strategies. They:

  • use and model a wide vocabulary to support children’s language development
  • positively manage children’s behaviour
  • build on children’s curiosity
  • focus on helping children to develop thinking skills.

These practices help build children’s confidence in a calm learning environment.

Teachers are involved alongside children’s play. This has a positive impact on children’s learning. Teachers actively listen and respond to children. Their planning is responsive to children’s interests and needs. Programme planning is clearly displayed for parents and their feedback is sought.

Learning environment

Children benefit from a well presented and interesting learning environment. They are provided with a wide range of resources. Teachers make good use of the indoor and outdoor spaces to provide children with a variety of learning opportunities. The environment reflects the unique nature of the Sumner community.

Bicultural perspectives are clearly evident and integrated into the environment. Teachers are committed to the use te reo Māori and include phrases and waiata appropriately within the programme.

Areas for development and review

Teachers regularly reflect on the programme and how well children are learning. The best examples clearly identify learning and are used to plan next steps. As a new teaching team the teachers have identified, and ERO agrees, that they now need to consolidate group planning and assessment across the team to ensure the best learning outcomes for children.

While teachers use the association guidelines for self review, it is not clear what use is made of these findings. These findings could be more effectively used in planning centre developments.

3. National Evaluation Topic

Overview

ERO provides information about the education system as a whole through its national reports. This information will be used as the basis for long term and systemic educational improvement.

Partnerships with Whānau of Māori Children in Early Childhood Services

As part of this review, ERO evaluated the extent to which:

  • this kindergarten understands and values the identity, language and culture of Māori children and their whānau, particularly when the child and whānau transition to the service
  • managers and teachers have built relationships with whānau of Māori children
  • this kindergarten works in partnership with whānau of Māori children.
Background

There are four Māori children attending this kindergarten whose parents/whānau have identified them as Māori. Teachers demonstrate a high commitment to biculturalism.

Areas of strength

A strength of this centre is the positive and supportive links teachers make with Māori whānau. They regularly discuss whānau aspirations for their children. Teachers value Māori culture and are interested in and encourage children and their whānau to share personal history and knowledge. Teachers also foster strong links to local Māori history and have shared this with the wider kindergarten community.

The association’s recent development of ‘Kidsfirst Whānau’ - a whānau-based approach for involving and engaging parents in kindergarten life and their child’s learning.

As a result Māori children experience an environment where their culture is respected and they have a sense of belonging.

4. Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff of Kidsfirst Kindergarten Sumner 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:

  • administration
  • health, safety and welfare
  • personnel management
  • financial and property management.

During the review, ERO looked at the kindergarten’s documentation, including policies, procedures and records of recent use of procedures. ERO also checked elements of the following areas that have a potentially high impact on outcomes for children:

  • emotional safety (including behaviour management, prevention of bullying and abuse)
  • physical safety (including behaviour management, sleeping and supervision practices; accidents and medication; hygiene and routines; travel and excursion policies and procedures)
  • staff qualifications and organisation
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

5. Future Action

ERO is confident that the kindergarten is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the service again in three years.

Graham Randell

National Manager Review Services

Southern Region

About the Centre

Type

All day Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Centres) Regulations 1998

Number licensed for

30 children aged over two years of age

Roll number

60

Gender composition

Girls 30; Boys 30

Ethnic composition

New Zealand European/Pākehā 49; Māori 4; Asian 2; Other 5

Review team on site

February 2011

Date of this report

30 June 2011

Previous three ERO reports

Education Review November 2007

Education Review June 2004

Accountability Review‘ December 1998

To the Parents and Community of Kidsfirst Kindergarten Sumner

These are the findings of the Education Review Office’s latest report on Kidsfirst Kindergarten Sumner.

Kidsfirst Kindergartens Sumner is located in the Sumner suburb of Christchurch. This kindergarten operates on a sessional basis to provide care and education for 30 children over the age of two. All teachers are fully qualified and registered.

It is one of 63 kindergartens (including one early learning centre) administered by the Canterbury Westland Kindergarten Association Incorporated trading as Kidsfirst Kindergartens.

Positive features of this kindergarten are:

  • high quality interactions and teaching practices that encourage and extend children’s independence, creativity and curiosity
  • the range of learning experiences which respond to children’s interests and reflect and utilise the local environment and resources
  • the strong bicultural focus within the environment and programme.

Teachers know the children, their families and the community well. They value and encourage families and whānau to share their whākakpāpā. Close links with the local schools support children’s transitions from the kindergarten. The children regularly visit the local school to use the library and for important school events.

The next step for the teachers is to review and further consolidate programme planning, assessment and self-review practices to increase their quality and usefulness of these processes.

The association is well organised and managed. It provides clear policies and procedures, a comprehensive framework for monitoring health and safety. The association incorporates management support in the form of education services managers and a manager of kindergarten operations who work in partnership with teachers providing ongoing leadership and professional development.

This review occurred at a time when the association and its kindergartens were responding to issues associated with the Canterbury earthquakes relating to children, family, personnel and property. The association has been proactive in addressing these challenges.

Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the kindergarten again in three years.

When ERO has reviewed an early childhood centre we encourage management to inform their community of any follow up action they plan to take. You should talk to the management or contact person if you have any questions about this evaluation, the full ERO report or their future intentions.

If you would like a copy of the full report, please contact the centre or see the ERO website, http://www.ero.govt.nz.

Graham Randell

National Manager Review Services

Southern Region