ABC Marne Street - 23/11/2017

1 Evaluation of ABC Marne Street

How well placed is ABC Marne Street 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.


ABC Marne Street in Palmerston North, is one of eight early childhood centres in the area operating under the umbrella of BestStart. It is a new purpose-built centre that opened in June 2015.

The centre is licensed for 60 children, including 17 aged up to two years. Of the 83 children enrolled at the time of this review, 15 are Māori.

In January 2017 the centre manager of ABC Hokowhitu became the co-manager at ABC Marne Street and ABC Hokowhitu. The staff consists of 12 teachers and most are qualified and registered.

The philosophy considers children as active explorers who are supported to take risks in a peaceful unhurried environment. They are viewed as confident and capable. Children's emotional wellbeing is supported and a lifelong love of learning is promoted.

This is the first report ERO report for ABC Marne Street.

The Review Findings

The philosophy of the centre is clearly evident and enacted in practice. A culture of respect and care underpins positive relationships between children. Children confidently converse with teachers.

Children engage for sustained periods in meaningful play. Learning and engagement in literacy, mathematics, art and science are promoted. They learn at their own pace in an unhurried manner. The indoor and outdoor environments are well-resourced and offer children opportunities to be explorers, challenged physically and participate creatively. They lead their learning independently and collaborate with others.

Children with additional needs are well supported within a highly inclusive learning environment.

Te reo me ngā tikanga Māori are evident in the centre environment and practices. Visual artefacts include posters, Māori art, pepeha, kakahu and natural resources. Leaders continue to strengthen practices that contribute to success for Māori.

The curriculum is informed by children's interests and guided by parent aspirations. It aligns with the intended learning outcomes of Te Whāriki (the early childhood curriculum).

The review of online portfolios of children's learning continues and leaders have identified from this the need to strengthen planning for each child. Leaders are continuing to develop their knowledge and understanding to better meet the needs of Pacific children.

Programme provision for children up to two years of age supports individual strengths and needs. Babies are nurtured and experience respectful relationships of care and respect.

Transition processes are well managed. Practices support children's movement into, through and out of the centre to school. Information is shared across rooms and a pamphlet prepared for children moving on to school.

The appraisal cycle is clearly articulated by BestStart. Fully implementing expectations for teacher inquiry, observations linked to teachers’ goals and competencies as outlined in Tātaiako: Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori Learners are needed to support staff development.

Developing knowledge and understanding of effective internal evaluation to guide improvement is a key next step. Building evaluative capability and using internal evaluation processes consistently and centre wide, should assist teachers to know about programme effectiveness and outcomes for children.

The centre manager and Best Start management work well together. They provide guidance and support that assists the effective operation of the centre.

Key Next Steps

Centre leaders acknowledge that continued development is required in relation to:

  • planning for learning for each child

  • fully implementing appraisal to support teacher development

  • understanding and using internal evaluation for continuous improvement.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of ABC Marne Street 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 ABC Marne Street will be in three years.

Patricia Davey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central (Acting)

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

23 November 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


Palmerston North

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

60 children, including up to 17 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 42, Girls 41

Ethnic composition

Other ethnic groups


Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

September 2017

Date of this report

23 November 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

This is the first review of this centre

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.