Barnardos Early Learning Centre Oamaru

Education institution number:
Service type:
Education and Care Service
Not Applicable
Total roll:

25 Trent Street, Oamaru

View on map

1 ERO’s Judgements

Akarangi | Quality Evaluation evaluates the extent to which this early childhood service has the learning and organisational conditions to support equitable and excellent outcomes for all learners. Te Ara Poutama- indicators of quality for early childhood education: what matters most (PDF 3.01MB) are the basis for making judgements about the effectiveness of the service in achieving equity and excellence for all learners. The Akarangi Quality Evaluation Judgement Rubric (PDF 91.30KB) derived from the indicators, is used to inform the ERO’s judgements about this service’s performance in promoting equity and excellence.

ERO’s judgements for Barnardos Early Learning Centre Oamaru are as follows:

Outcome Indicators

ERO’s judgement

What the service knows about outcomes for learners

Whakaū Embedding

Ngā Akatoro Domains

ERO’s judgement

He Whāriki Motuhake

The learner and their learning

Whakaū Embedding

Whakangungu Ngaio

Collaborative professional learning builds knowledge and capability

Whakaū Embedding

Ngā Aronga Whai Hua

Evaluation for improvement

Whāngai Establishing


Leaders foster collaboration and improvement

Whakaū Embedding

Te Whakaruruhau

Stewardship through effective governance and management

Whāngai Establishing

2 Context of the Service

Barnardos Early Learning Centre Oamaru is part of the nation-wide charity Barnardos New Zealand. A service delivery manager oversees service operations, and a centre manager is responsible for
day-to-day management. All teachers are certificated. The service provides education and care for children from birth-to-school-age.  

3 Summary of findings

Children are actively involved in a wide range of learning experiences that include promoting physical, social, and emotional competency. Kaiako work in partnership with parents and whānau to support children’s learning and wellbeing. Children are encouraged to take responsibility for themselves, others, and the environment. Their mana is fostered within a culturally responsive, play-based learning curriculum, underpinned by Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.

Kaiako provide caring and nurturing interactions to support a positive sense of belonging for infants, toddlers, and young children. They use a range of strategies to encourage children to be confident to explore, experiment, problem solve, and express their ideas. Children with additional needs are well supported to succeed.

Leaders and kaiako are committed to practices which promote success for Māori children however these are in the early stages of implementation. Some kaiako naturally integrate te reo me ngā  tikanga Māori into day-to-day practice, intentionally supporting Māori learners to succeed as Māori. Understandings of te ao Maori are variable within the team and intentional teaching practices have yet to evaluated for their impact on outcomes for Māori learners. Kaiako value and celebrate Pacific and other diverse groups of children.

Recent involvement in professional learning has supported kaiako to improve their understanding of the learning outcomes from Te Whariki. Kaiako are beginning to make the learning outcomes more visible in individual children’s planning and assessment records. The intended learning outcomes are not clear in group planning. The languages, cultures and identities of children are not consistently prominent in children’s learning records.

Leaders foster relational trust to support collaboration and change. They work closely with kaiako to develop and enact the service’s philosophy, vision, and goals, including recognising Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Kaiako have good opportunities for professional learning, mentoring, and coaching to develop knowledge, skills, and confidence in evaluation and inquiry. Strategic planning and evaluation, internal evaluation, appraisal, and curriculum design processes are new and at the early stages of being embedded.

4 Improvement actions

Barnardos Early Learning Centre Oamaru will include the following actions in its Quality Improvement Planning. These are to:

  • deepen kaiako understandings of bicultural practices, Māori theories and pedagogies, to assist all kaiako to enact a culturally responsive curriculum
  • strengthen intentional teaching practices by making the learning outcomes from Te Whāriki more evident in assessment, planning and evaluation of children’s learning
  • further develop kaiako knowledge, skills and confidence to engage in evaluation and inquiry to implement change and sustain improvements.

5 Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Barnardos Early Learning Centre Oamaru 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.

Dr Lesley Patterson
Director Review and Improvement Services (Southern)
Southern Region | Te Tai Tini

2 July 2021 

6 About the Early Childhood Service

Early Childhood Service Name Barnardos Early Learning Centre Oamaru
Profile Number 83063
Location Oamaru

Service type

Education and care service

Number licensed for

40 children, including up to 12 aged under 2.

Percentage of qualified teachers


Service roll


Ethnic composition

Māori 15, NZ European/Pākehā 45, Other ethnicities 12.

Review team on site

May 2021

Date of this report

2 July 2021

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review June 2016; Education Review, February 2013.


1 Evaluation of Barnardos Kidstart Childcare-Oamaru Early Learning Centre

How well placed is Barnardos Kidstart Childcare-Oamaru Early Learning Centre to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Barnardos Kidstart Childcare-Oamaru Early Learning Centre is well placed to promote positive outcomes for children.

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


This centre is part of Barnardos Kidstart, a nation-wide charitable trust that specialises in educational programmes, care and support for children and their families. As such, the centre receives a range of professional leadership support from Barnardos that is focused on continuing to improve outcomes for all children.

Care and education programmes for children from birth to school age are provided in two separate areas. Programmes are based on Te Whāriki, the New Zealand Early Childhood Curriculum. Planning is currently underway to update the outdoors environment.

Staff are a mix of fully registered teachers, new graduates and teachers in training. Since the 2013 ERO review, cultural diversity has continued to increase. Daily meals for children are prepared by an experienced cook. The centre actively promotes healthy food and physical activity.

Progress has been made in addressing the areas identified for improvement in the 2013 ERO report. Good progress is evident in some areas while others continue to be a focus for ongoing attention.

The Review Findings

Children benefit from the nurturing care and support they receive from teachers who know them and their families well. The frequent links teachers make between the centre and home help to build relationships that are warm and responsive to the needs of children and their parents. Children’s wellbeing remains a key and shared priority for all staff. Centre leaders seek extra support for children who have particular learning, social or health needs.

Children are encouraged to choose learning activities that are of interest to them and are supported to become increasingly independent. They have ongoing opportunities for settled and sustained play. Teachers’ constant conversations with children and open-ended questioning support oral language development and help to build children’s confidence in expressing ideas. Children learn ways of playing with their peers and resolving conflict through the ways teachers model and reinforce positive choices and behaviours.

Centre leaders and staff actively value children’s diverse cultures and languages. They think deeply about cultural values and ideas. This is strengthening aspects of the programmes and practices for Māori and Pacific learners. Centre leaders and teachers welcome parents into the centre. They seek and respond to parents’ feedback and work closely with them to support children.

Some well planned, large-group programmes are in place. The best examples of these make the intended learning clear and identify the strategies teachers will use to support this learning. Improvements to the way group programmes are evaluated will considerably strengthen current practice.

Infants and toddlers in the under two’s area are well nurtured and cared for. Teachers are responsive to children’s verbal and non-verbal cues and encourage gradual independence. Routines for young children are flexible and responsive to their needs. Early literacy is promoted through music and movement.

Staff are well supported by their professional and early learning managers. Useful Barnardos systems and structures support internal evaluation and health and safety practices. Appraisal processes promote teacher reflection, especially in regard to professional readings and their links to teaching practice. The professional learning programme is well linked to centre goals and other practices and systems that promote children’s learning and wellbeing. Recently a developed guidelines and templates to further strengthen internal evaluation have the potential to considerably improve outcomes for children’s learning.

Key Next Steps

ERO and centre leaders agree on the following priorities for improvement. These are:

  • further strengthening internal evaluation
  • continuing to improve assessment and planning processes and practices for individual children
  • formalising, documenting and using observations of teaching practice in appraisal processes.

Once the current review of the centre’s philosophy has been completed, it would be timely to evaluate progress in other areas against the updated philosophy’s aspirations and goals. Focus areas could include the indoors environment and centre programmes such as readiness for school and support for children with English language needs.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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 Barnardos Kidstart Childcare-Oamaru Early Learning Centre will be in three years.

Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern

29 June 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 number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

44 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 42; Girls 42

Ethnic composition









Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%+

Based on funding rates

80% +

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2016

Date of this report

29 June 2016

Most recent ERO reports


Education Review

February 2013

Education Review

August 2009

Education Review

May 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.