Karori Playcentre

Education institution number:
60036
Service type:
Playcentre
Definition:
Not Applicable
Total roll:
28
Telephone:
Address:

64 Campbell Street, Karori, Wellington

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1 Evaluation of Karori Playcentre

How well placed is Karori Playcentre 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

Karori Playcentre is one of 19 parent-led early childhood centres governed and administered by the Wellington Playcentre Association (the association). The playcentre is licensed to provide mixed-age sessional education and care for 30 children, five mornings a week. This includes provision for 18 children, up to the age of two.

A council of elected volunteer representatives from each of the association's member centres, oversees the association at the governance level. This work is assisted by an operations manager and general manager. An executive committee administers the adult education programme. A centre support worker is employed to visit the centre and provide professional advice and feedback to strengthen practice and promote improvement. Responsibility for the day-to-day operation is undertaken by centre-elected office holders.

Curriculum planning and implementation is a shared responsibility. Sessions are supported by a duty team of parent educators who hold playcentre training certificates. Many centre members are involved in the association's training programme. Parents come with a wide range of tertiary qualifications and are actively involved in their child's education.

The association philosophy, 'Whānau tupu ngātahi – families growing together', is articulated as empowering parents and children to learn, grow and play together. This underpins practice and was reaffirmed by the association and Karori Playcentre in 2016.

The service and the association responded positively to the areas identified for improvement in the May 2014 ERO report. Internal evaluation and strategic planning were undertaken by association personnel to bring about changes to both the structural and organisational culture of the organisation. Clear boundaries between governance and management were expressed and changes made to improve support to individual centres.

The previous ERO report also identified that centre leaders would benefit from association support to: further develop continuity of planning across sessions; enhance practices to especially foster Māori and Pacific success; and continue to review transition-to-school processes. 

The New Zealand Playcentre Federation, of which the Wellington Association is part, is planning a significant restructure for 2017, that includes amalgamating associations. Playcentres will become part of a regional hub, supported by a regional manager and support persons.

This review was part of a cluster of ten reviews in the Wellington Playcentre Association.

The Review Findings

The association philosophy and Te Whāriki effectively underpin centre practice. An inclusive culture of care, respect and shared responsibility for leading children's play and learning is evident. The positive tone in the centre supports children’s social skills, development and learning. Parent educators know the children well. They enthusiastically involve themselves in the learning and wellbeing of all children.

A recently introduced online system promotes continuity in assessment, planning and evaluation across all sessions. The process supports parent educators' increased involvement in children’s learning. They are developing clear, shared expectations and processes for responding to children’s interests and ideas and successfully contributing their views to programme planning. Leadership is encouraged and distributed amongst parents. Adults are developing as reflective practitioners.

Indoor and outdoor spaces are appropriately resourced to encourage children to learn, investigate, develop their physical skills and engage in imaginative, creative play. Literacy and mathematics learning is enhanced as part of children’s daily experiences. Infants and toddlers are encouraged to explore their surroundings. Wider community contexts, that include weekly sessions outside the centre, enrich older children's learning opportunities.

Well-considered, clear strategies support children and their families’ induction into the centre. Parent educators continue to develop useful processes for children as they move to school.

A comprehensive internal evaluation was undertaken during 2014. This was to discover how well the association and centres included te reo and tikanga Māori as part of a culturally responsive curriculum. At Karori Playcentre, te ao Māori continues to develop as an integral part of children's early learning experience. Appropriate resources, displays and practices that reflect te ao Māori, promote children's and adults' growing knowledge and understanding of their bicultural heritage. Parents continue to develop their practice to support Māori children to achieve success as Māori and Pacific children to achieve success as Pacific.

Karori Playcentre members are a diverse group of enthusiastic parents and whānau who bring valuable skills and knowledge to their roles. The high levels of involvement of the centre's community and a sense of collective responsibility to children, provide a positive platform for learning. Effective systems support the smooth day-to-day running of the playcentre.

The dual purpose of internal evaluation for accountability and improvement is well understood by centre leaders and increasingly informs decision-making. Involvement in association internal review has supported centre members' improved understanding of planned review. Planning priorities are aligned to the playcentre's and association vision and focused on improving teaching and learning. 

The association is an improvement focused organisation. The 2014 ERO reviews found the support provided at the centre level by association support workers was appreciated. ERO also recognised that formalising this arrangement to provide a more effective approach to responding to the needs of individual centres was a next step for development.

The association, as part of reviewing its structural organisation, reviewed the position of centre support workers and made improvements to human resource management. Timely and relevant leadership and guidance is provided for its member centres.

Key Next Steps

Association and centre leaders should further improve outcomes for children and families, by using internal evaluation to ensure good practice is sustained and prioritised developments are achieved.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Karori Playcentre 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 Karori Playcentre will be in three years.

Alan Wynyard
Deputy Chief Review Officer Central (Acting)

13 July 2017 

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

Wellington

Ministry of Education profile number

60036

Licence type

Playcentre

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 18 aged under 2

Service roll

49

Gender composition

Girls 30, Boys 19

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
English
Chinese
Other ethnic groups

2
37
4
3
3

Reported ratios of adults to children

Under 2

1:1

Better than minimum requirements

Over 2

1:5

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2017

Date of this report

13 July 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

 

Education Review

May 2014

Education Review

September 2010

Education Review

November 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.

1 Evaluation of Karori Playcentre

How well placed is Karori Playcentre 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

Karori Playcentre is one of 20 parent-led early childhood centres administered by the Wellington Playcentre Association, (the association). A council oversees operation at governance level and an executive committee provides the adult education programme, guidance and support for members. Two centre supporters are employed by the executive to visit playcentres and provide professional advice and feedback to strengthen practice and promote improvement. Responsibility for day-to-day operation is undertaken by centre-elected office holders. Parents share the duties associated with implementing the programme.

Playcentre philosophy recognises parents as the best first teachers of their children and emphasises the importance of child-initiated play in mixed-age sessions. Acknowledging Te Tiriti o Waitangi is an integral part of this philosophy.

Karori Playcentre is one of the first playcentres established in Wellington and operates out of its original premises in Ben Burn Park. It offers daily morning sessions for pre-school children.

The service has long been an integral part of the local community. Core values of respect, cooperation, supportiveness and inclusion guide parent cooperation for promoting children’s wellbeing, learning and development.

The centre has a positive reporting history with ERO, with successive reports indicating sustained good practice and continuous improvement. Since the September 2010 ERO report, the premises have been upgraded to meet requirements for relicensing under the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008. Professional development has focused on growing leadership and capability for implementing a culturally responsive curriculum. Centre members are working to retain more children until they go to school.

This review was part of a cluster review of 20 centres in the Wellington Playcentre Association.

The Review Findings

The philosophy, values, vision and mission are well reflected in guiding documents and practice. Mutually respectful and supportive relationships are evident and extend beyond the centre. A caring, family community is promoted.

The learning environment offers variety and challenge and is organised to invite children’s interaction with the programme. Children are assisted to settle and participate with others on arrival and are included in decisions about resources. They are able to select from a suitable range of learning materials supporting preference and choice. Children have opportunities to continue with their interests or explore something new. The park provides immediate access to wide open spaces when needed.

Babies and toddlers are appropriately included in the programme. Adults work sensitively with younger children, watching for cues to be attuned to needs. Infants have the protection of a designated area within the main play space. They enjoy the contact with older siblings and other children.

The programme is strongly child-led with adults taking supporting roles. Since the previous ERO review members have reviewed and refined systems for assessment, planning and evaluation. As a result, there is improved efficiency and consistency in processes across session teams. A further review is planned. The focus of this should be guided by planned evaluation of the extent to which changed practice has improved outcomes for children.

Parent educators know children and their families well. Information provided by parents guides them with understanding each child’s personality, communication skills and particular needs. They engage in conversation to encourage children to extend play and develop the language of the activity. Opportunities for children to be creative and imaginative are fostered well. Parents listen carefully to children and each other to check their responses are what is needed.

Each child’s journey of learning and development is recorded in their individual profiles, which are contributed to by parents and playcentre members. Entries provide useful information on individual interests, learning, development and wellbeing. These are regularly updated and show increasing participation in the centre curriculum, developing social relationships and progress. Parent educators know, from their training and self review, that written observations should be considered more deeply to identify the learning and plan for continuity and complexity.

Centre leaders, in consultation with the association, are committed to enhancing members’ understanding of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and to embedding biculturalism in centre operation. This is being effected with the support of the association Māori Whānau Support Group and through making links with the local Māori community. Members’ learning is reflected in the use of te reo me ngā tikanga Māori in the programme and adult meetings. The next planned step for members’ development is to be deliberate in promoting success for Māori children by recognising whānau culture and identity.

Adults take pride in being part of a community of learners with their children. Highly committed parents manage continuity of leadership through planned induction, mentoring and transition. They are improvement focused. Strategic priorities are well articulated and supported with measures for monitoring and reviewing progress. Self review is an embedded part of playcentre practice. Next steps for improvement are identified and known to all.

The association provides good support and training for members. The centre supporter gives regular and face-to-face feedback and aid as needed. A more structured and evaluative approach based on centre and association-identified priorities, and growing members’ practice, should help with promoting and sustaining improvement over time. Comprehensive and up-to-date written policies and procedures guide office holders in their management roles, and members in planning and implementing an appropriate programme. The association is both improvement and future-focused. A systematic review of and plan for restructuring governance and management are being carefully implemented to support a more sustainable direction for the organisation and individual centres.

Key Next Steps

Members have identified that they should continue their development in:

  • recognising children’s learning and making this clearer in planning to ensure continuity across the session teams
  • enhancing culturally responsive practice, especially to foster success for Māori and Pacific children
  • increasing the number of children who stay until entry to school. This should be worked toward in conjunction with a review of the transition-to-school process.

The association should:

  • continue to develop centre support processes based on identified needs and priorities
  • provide leadership to members to help them define their understanding of success for Māori as Māori
  • redevelop the appraisal process to ensure any paid team leader's development needs are suitably identified and addressed.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Karori Playcentre 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 Karori Playcentre will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services Central Region (Acting)

15 May 2014

2 Information about the Early Childhood Service

Location

Karori, Wellington

Ministry of Education profile number

60036

Licence type

Playcentre

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including 18 aged up to 2

Service roll

58

Gender composition

Girls 34,

Boys 24

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Other European

Other ethnic groups

2

40

7

9

Reported ratios of adults to children

Under 2

1:1

Better than minimum requirements

 

Over 2

1:5

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

March 2014

Date of this report

15 May 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

 

Education Review

September 2010

 

Education Review

November 2007

 

Education Review

March 2005

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.