Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay

Education institution number:
5624
Service type:
Free Kindergarten
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
48
Telephone:
Address:

Eyre Street, Whitianga

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Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay - 10/10/2016

1 Evaluation of Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay

How well placed is Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay 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

Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay operates under the umbrella of the Central North Island Kindergarten Trust (CNIKT). The kindergarten is located in Whitianga, and is licensed to cater for 40 children from two years to school age. At the time of this ERO review, a high percentage of children identified as Māori. The kindergarten is open from 8.45am to 3.00pm, five days a week.

The kindergarten philosophy statement places priority on developing strong, respectful relationships with tamariki, whānau and community. Partnerships for learning empower children to be competent and confident lifelong learners, with a positive sense of identity and mana.

Since the 2013 ERO review a new head teacher has been appointed along with one other teacher. There have been considerable developments in all areas of self review. Areas identified for improvement in the 2013 ERO report have been addressed.

The kindergarten is well-supported by the Central North Island Kindergarten Trust. 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 Te Tiriti o Waitangi. The trust works positively to provide equitable opportunities to families by extending its hours of opening.

Professional leaders monitor the kindergarten’s compliance with policies and procedures to ensure it meets regulation requirements and management expectations. They work alongside head teachers to support their leadership and provide guidance, and to mentor teachers as part of the appraisal process. Kindergarten teachers have generous opportunities to attend professional development opportunities to grow their teaching and leadership skills.

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 four reviews in the Central North Island Kindergarten Trust.

The Review Findings

Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay is very well placed to sustain positive outcomes for children and their parents and whānau. Children and their whānau demonstrate a strong sense of belonging to the kindergarten community.

Teachers know children well in the context of their family and general life experiences. They use this knowledge to ignite children's curiosity, wonder and desire for discovery, and add complexity to their learning. As a result, children are developing learning dispositions, knowledge and skills that support them to inquire into, and make sense of the world around them. Children confidently take responsibility for self-initiated and sustained play and learning, and are capable and competent learners.

Children's holistic development is well supported by teachers who have a deep and shared understanding of how they learn. Teachers' beliefs and values underpinning high-quality education and care. They place an emphasis on the importance of Te Tiriti o Waitangi partnerships. Teachers value the expertise and knowledge of tangata whenua. Kaumātua, parents, whānau and community members generously share their knowledge and time to enrich children's learning experiences.

A new initiative has been the introduction of a beach programme where children are developing an understanding about sustainability and kaitiakitanga for their environment. They take shared responsibility for care and protection of their local beach, as well as learning about local history.

Teachers keep up-to-date with current theories and research about learning and teaching. They use this professional knowledge to design a highly responsive emergent curriculum. The principles of empowerment, holistic development, relationships, family and community within Te Whāriki (early childhood curriculum) are strongly evident in practice, and underpin all aspects of teaching and learning. Teachers successfully implement an inclusive curriculum that embraces the concept of whanaungatanga, manaakitanga and ako. Literacy, mathematics and other learning areas are meaningfully integrated into children's interests, strengths and play.

Teachers are skilled at engaging children in meaningful learning experiences, within a thoughtfully prepared and stimulating environment. There are extensive open-ended opportunities for children to develop their creativity, use their imagination and be innovative. Children are experiencing success in learning.

Teachers use high-quality teaching interactions that support children to problem solve, think critically, and develop learning habits and behaviours that support older children in their transition to school. Children's social competencies are effectively extended through their social interactions. Their language and communication skills are well supported.

Teachers use assessment, planning and evaluation information to implement meaningful programmes and inquire into the effectiveness of their practice. Child portfolios reflect a credit-based approach that builds on what children know across a range of contexts. Quality information about learning, identity and progress.

High quality professional leadership supports relational trust at all levels. The head teacher, with the support of the CNIKT professional leader, teachers and whānau have established a kindergarten culture in which children are first and foremost valued, celebrated and affirmed for who they are and what they bring to their learning. This culture is one that:

  • advocates for equitable outcomes for all children, parents and whānau, which is highly responsive to the diverse needs, knowledge and skills of children and their families

  • uses highly-effective self-review systems to improve all aspects of kindergarten practice

  • integrates parents', whānau and children's aspirations and views into all decision making

  • values everyone as a leader, with strengths and knowledge to contribute to positive outcomes for children and their families.

Key Next Step

ERO affirms the kindergarten's self-identified next step in their self-review inquiries. Leaders, teachers and whānau agree that a valuable next step is to strengthen and build on the strong foundations already established that promote te ao Māori and a bicultural curriculum.

This next step includes continuing to work in partnership with whānau and local iwi to increase shared understandings and knowledge about local Māori histories and knowledge, as well as culturally responsive assessment practice.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay 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 - Mercury Bay will be in four years.

Lynda Pura-Watson

Deputy Chief Review Officer

10 October 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

Whitianga

Ministry of Education profile number

5624

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children aged over 2

Service roll

35

Gender composition

Boys 19 Girls 16

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Indian

Other

20

13

1

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

June 2016

Date of this report

10 October 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

May 2013

Education Review

June 2010

Education Review

February 2007

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 - Mercury Bay - 13/05/2013

1 Evaluation of the Service

How well placed is the service to promote positive outcomes for children?

Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay is well placed to promote positive outcomes for children, with the support of the Central North Island Kindergarten Trust (Trust).

Context

Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay is located in Whitianga and caters for children from the local community and surrounding areas. The kindergarten is well established in the community and some families have generational connections. Education and care are provided for up to 40 children over the age of two. The kindergarten operates Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 8.45am to 2.45pm and Wednesday 8.45am to 1.00pm.

The kindergarten operates under the umbrella of the Central North Island Kindergarten Trust, (known as Central Kids). It aims to develop children’s skills to become lifelong learners and support them to become confident, competent, strong communicators and secure in their sense of belonging. Teachers value partnerships with parents and have a commitment to celebrate the dual cultural heritage and multi-cultures of New Zealand.

The teaching team has been together for a number of years. Recent professional development about positive guidance enhances teaching practices and supports children’s social development.

The kindergarten has responded to the 2010 ERO review and has reviewed the indoor learning environments to increase opportunities for children to learn through play. They have adopted the new appraisal system developed by the Trust. This system is supporting teachers to reflect on the quality of their teaching practice.

While teachers have had a focus on improving self-review processes, there remains a need for systems to be further developed. This should enable teachers to more effectively monitor the quality of teaching and educational outcomes for children.

This review was conducted as part of a cluster approach to reviews in eleven early childhood education services within the Central North Island Kindergarten Trust umbrella organisation.

Review Findings

A feature of the centre is the emphasis placed on fostering children’s and parents’ sense of wellbeing and belonging through trusting relationships. Teachers have a good knowledge of how children learn, and notice and respond to their emerging interests to extend their thinking. The environment is well resourced and provides children with a range of choices to initiate and support their learning.

Children confidently use information and communication technologies as a tool for learning. Teachers work alongside them to develop their research skills and seek further information. Teachers are committed to the principles of sustainability and children learn to respect and nurture papatuanuku (the earth). Literacy and mathematics are woven throughout children’s play. There are many opportunities for children to develop their social skills through meaningful interactions with their peers and adults. Teachers have enhanced the inside environment and purchased resources to reflect a stronger Māori dimension, and are increasingly integrating te reo and tikanga Māori practices. They operate an inclusive programme and give careful consideration to providing appropriate challenges for boys.

The head teacher has strong links with the local community. Parents are welcomed by the kindergarten team and are able to share their aspirations for their child’s wellbeing. Children and parents have easy access to children’s profiles. These profiles celebrate their time at the centre.

The kindergarten receives equity funding that is well used to support teachers' professional development, and to provide further learning opportunities and resources for all children.

The Trust provides clear and comprehensive guidelines and expectations for practice. The head teacher and teachers are well supported by a knowledgeable and experienced professional leader. The Trust provides generous professional development for teachers to keep them up-to-date with current theory and practice.

Key Next Steps

There remains a need for the head teacher to work collaboratively with staff to more effectively monitor and review positive outcomes for children. ERO, kindergarten leaders and teachers agree that the key next step to inform decisions for ongoing improvement is to implement and document effective systems and procedures to guide self review. This should include:

  • a focus on teaching and learning, and outcomes for all children
  • links between the kindergarten’s vision, philosophy, annual plan and outcomes of the appraisal process
  • a clear review focus with a specific purpose supported by meaningful indicators
  • planned actions and timeframes, which include ongoing monitoring of self review projects
  • professional learning and development, and research related to the self review focus area
  • in-depth analysis of appropriate evidence.

Recommendation

The head teacher and teachers with the support of the Trust’s professional leadership team, develop reliable and effective self review systems.

2 Legal Requirements

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Central Kids Kindergartens - Mercury Bay 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.

3 Next Review

When is ERO likely to review the early childhood service again?

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in three years.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

13 May 2013

Information about the Early Childhood Service

Location

Whitianga

Ministry of Education profile number

5624

Licence type

Education and Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll

53

Gender composition

Boys 30 Girls 23

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

Māori

Asian

European

Pacific

26

20

4

2

1

Percentage of qualified teachers

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

     
 

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

March 2013

Date of this report

13 May 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

June 2010

February 2007

November 2003

General Information about Early Childhood Reviews

About ERO Reviews

The Education Review Office (ERO) is the New Zealand government department that reviews schools and early childhood services throughout New Zealand.

Review focus

ERO's education reviews in early childhood services focus on the factors that contribute to positive learning outcomes for children. ERO evaluates how well placed the service is to make and sustain improvements for the benefit of all children at the service. To reach these findings ERO considers:

  • 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 self review and partnerships with parents and whānau.

Review Coverage

ERO reviews do not cover every aspect of service performance and each ERO report may cover different issues. The aim is to provide information on aspects that are central to positive outcomes for children and useful to the service.