Omapere Playcentre - 26/11/2012

1 Evaluation of the Service

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

Omapere Playcentre is well placed to continue to provide children with experiences that promote positive outcomes for their learning and development.


Omapere Playcentre is managed cooperatively by family members who attend with their children. The centre operates three days a week under the umbrella of the Mid Northland Playcentre Association, Whakarongorua. Centre members have varying levels of Playcentre qualifications. Playcentre parent education and support help centre members to increase their knowledge about early childhood education and to understand their roles in promoting children’s learning. Centre members’ current focus is on establishing self-review processes.

The Playcentre philosophy clearly outlines a commitment to promoting children’s learning through child-initiated play and to supporting parents as children’s first teachers. The philosophy also promotes the centre as a cooperative body where parent members work together to promote positive outcomes for children.

Since ERO’s 2009 review, the Association, which provides a framework for the centre’s operations, has adapted its structure. The lack of a centre support worker has reduced support for centre members to provide good quality programmes.

The Review Findings

Children develop a sense of wellbeing and belonging at Omapere Playcentre. They know each other well and participate in inclusive mixed-age play. Children form trusting relationships with adults and ask for support and guidance to extend their learning.

A strong team approach is evident in the ways in which centre members implement the programme for children. Centre routines are predictable to give children a sense of security in the Playcentre environment. Children make choices and display confidence in their own abilities.

In 2009 ERO noted that a distinctive Māori focus was clearly evident in the programme. This focus continues to be an integral part of centre practices and helps to give children a sense of belonging in the centre.

Centre members have recently made improvements in the appearance of both indoor and outdoor areas. As a result, the centre is a pleasant and attractive environment for children to learn and play.

Children access a range of resources and activities. Adults work alongside children and engage in conversations that prompt their involvement in the programme. Adults listen carefully to children and are responsive to their interests. Experienced adults are welcoming to newer members and model effective practices for interacting with children.

Centre members have developed collective values and beliefs. The programme is strongly influenced by the Playcentre philosophy and Te Whāriki, the New Zealand early childhood curriculum. Frequent and ongoing discussions provide opportunities for all adults to communicate and learn together.

Whānau value the strong leadership of the centre president. They acknowledge the improvements and progress that have resulted from her commitment to ensuring high quality learning for children. She has inspired members to develop their leadership roles and has developed effective, transparent and inclusive management systems for the centre.

Members have identified self review as an aspect of their practice that they need to further develop and strengthen. They are focused on continuous improvement. They could now monitor how the completion of centre goals influences children’s learning.

ERO agrees that, to enhance the curriculum and promote good practice, centre members could:

  • develop clear documentation for planning, assessment and evaluation and form shared understandings about good assessment practices that are based on children’s interests
  • seek support to develop systems for planning that will enrich children’s learning
  • develop for the centre long-term and annual plans that link to the Association’s planning.

ERO and the centre members discussed how whānau could develop a self-review process that identifies ways to improve learning outcomes for children and builds on members’ understanding of self review.

More robust Association systems for monitoring the quality of all aspects of centre operations would help centre members to improve the quality of their programmes

2 Legal Requirements

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Omapere 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.

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.

Makere Smith National Manager Review Services Northern Region (Acting)

26 November 2012

Information about the Early Childhood Service


Opononi, Northland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Sessional Playcentre

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 8 aged under 2 years

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 6

Girls 6

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā



Review team on site

September 2012

Date of this report

26 November 2012

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review 

November 2009

October 2006 

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.