Katikati Playcentre - 28/06/2018

1 Evaluation of Katikati Playcentre

How well placed is Katikati 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.


Katikati Playcentre is a parent-led, mixed-age service. It is licenced for 25 children, including 12 up to the age of two years. Since the last ERO review there has been a decline in the roll and currently 15 children attend. The centre is currently operating three morning sessions on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. A Supporting Parents Alongside Children's Education (SPACE) programme is also available for parents with infants.

During 2018 playcentres are transitioning from operating as The New Zealand Playcentre Federation (NZPF) with 32 regional associations to a national organisation with six offices. In the central North Island eight associations have merged into a regional hub renamed Playcentre Aotearoa Central North Island. This region includes 95 playcentres spread over a large geographic area. During the organisation transition there is some overlap between association systems and new national approaches. At the time of this ERO review there is some uncertainty as new processes become established.

The governance management structure consists of a regional manager and a centre support coordinator who provides guidance and management for the playcentres. A centre administrator (CA) and centre support worker (CSW) were appointed in early 2018 to provide support and guidance for centre operations. A national professional learning and development team is in the early stages of planning for additional learning support to build members’ capability as first teachers of their children. Responsibility for centre leadership is shared across centre members.

Through their philosophy the centre aims to support adults and children to learn together through play and discovery in a safe, stimulating and caring learning environment.

The centre has a positive reporting history with ERO. Since the last ERO review in 2015, the centre has made good progress in most areas identified as next steps. These include strengthening members' confidence in te reo Māori and improving internal evaluation and the planning and assessment of children's learning. A need for more work around policy review and development remains.

This review was part of a cluster of six playcentres reviews in the Western Bay of Plenty under the governance of Playcentre Aotearoa Central North Island.

The Review Findings

A collaborative group of members provide effective leadership of the centre. They have clear roles and responsibilities that help to promote positive learning outcomes for children. Members have developed a useful strategic and annual plan to guide improvement. They have also internal evaluation practices that are informing centre development. Members are strongly committed to the playcentre philosophy and participate in ongoing parent education programmes when available. Decisions are focused on children and their parents growing and learning together.

The curriculum is well designed to support children's emerging interests and strengths. A child-focused programme is planned around the knowledge that children and their families bring to the centre. Literacy, mathematics and science are integrated well and opportunities for sensory exploration enriches children's learning. A recent focus on environmental sustainability is contributing to children's project work. The bicultural curriculum has been strengthened. Tikanga and te reo Māori are valued and incorporated into the programme by members. Pacific children share their language, culture and identity with others in the centre. Children develop a strong sense of belonging.

Children are well supported to become independent and confident learners. Rich assessment portfolios capture children's learning. They acknowledge the identity of the child as a successful learner and document their strengths and interests. Members notice, recognise and respond to children’s emerging interests and plan around the emerging curriculum. Daily sessions are evaluated to plan for future learning opportunities. Children's emerging interests are well supported.

Children's learning is enhanced through responsive, respectful and trusting interactions. Their social competence is supported in a calm and settled environment. Through inclusive practice children are seen as individuals and positively affirmed for their contributions. Children up to the age of two years are supported by their primary caregiver, through strong secure attachments. Tuakana/ teina relationships are formed and within the mixed-age setting the youngest children are supported by more competent or older children, who in turn benefit from leadership opportunities. Children and their families develop a sense belonging and wellbeing.

The Central North Island region is in the early stages of providing support for centres during a time of transition. Existing polices and systems are supporting centre operations until new systems developed by Playcentre Aotearoa are implemented. The strategic and annual plans are yet to consistently guide regional and centre direction. A particular strength is the Te Whare Tikanga Māori initiative, which promotes self-determination for Māori members through regular hui and targeted funding and enacts the partnership aspect of Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Key Next Steps

ERO has identified the need for Playcentre Aotearoa Central North Island management to develop:

  • more robust quality-assurance processes for internal evaluation practice and reporting systems to inform priorities, future direction and provide targeted support for its playcentres
  • a strategic approach to professional development in relation to Te Whāriki 2017.

In addition, playcentre members, with support from the CSW and CA, have identified a need to increase membership to ensure sustainability for the service and to share roles and responsibilities.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Katikati 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.

Action for compliance

ERO identified an area of non-compliance related to appraisal.

The current appraisal process does not meet Ministry of Education regulatory requirements. Governance needs to ensure suitable human resource management practices are developed, documented and implemented.

[Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Centres 2008, GMA7.]

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Katikati Playcentre will be in three years.

Lynda Pura-Watson

Deputy Chief Review Officer

Te Tai Miringa - Waikato / Bay of Plenty Region

28 June 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



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type


Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

25 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 11 Boys 4

Ethnic composition







Review team on site

May 2018

Date of this report

28 June 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

February 2015

Education Review

September 2011

Education Review

September 2008

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.