Methodology

ERO'S framework for evaluation

An overall judgement was made for each early childhood service in response to the following evaluation question:

To what extent does this service’s curriculum promote positive learning outcomes for infants and toddlers, particularly in relation to the communication and exploration strands of Te Whariki?

ERO gathered information during regular education reviews in 235 early childhood services during Terms 1 and 2, 2014. ERO asked the following key questions in each service to inform their overall judgement:

  1. What informs and influences the service’s curriculum (with a focus on communication and exploration strands and associated goals) for infants and toddlers?
  2. How do relationships and interactions between teachers and infants and toddlers support them in relation to the goals associated with exploration and communication?
  3. What does assessment information show about infants’ and toddlers’ progress and learning in relation to communication and exploration?
  4. How does the physical environment support infants and toddlers to become competent and confident communicators and explorers?
  5. What do leaders and teachers know about the extent to which their curriculum supports infants and toddlers as competent and confident communicators and explorers?

Our report findings are guided by the following questions:

  • What is happening in early childhood services where infants and toddlers are well supported to become competent and confident communicators and explorers?
  • What are the challenges and/or barriers for services in supporting infants and toddlers to become competent and confident communicators and explorers?

ERO also gathered information about the ages of children enrolled, adult-to-child ratios, group sizes and qualifications of staff working with children from birth to two years old and children aged from two to three years old. We also gathered information about recent professional learning and development specific to infants and toddlers.

Appendix 1 includes some self-review questions for services to use for their self review, inquiry and reflection. Appendix 2 has more information about the sample.

Data collection

During each early childhood service’s review, ERO collected information from a variety of sources including:

  • discussions with leaders and teachers at each service
  • informal discussions with parents and whanau
  • observations of teaching and learning at the service
  • documentation related to the operation of the service and children’s learning.