Barnardos KidStart Childcare - Huia Home-based Service - 31/01/2013

1 The Education Review Office (ERO) Evaluation

Barnardos offers a range of early childhood care and education, and child and family services in communities throughout New Zealand. Barnardos KidStart Huia operates in Gisborne and is one of seven early childhood 'projects' administered by the regional business manager. A team leader and visiting teacher are responsible for the provision of home-based care, implementing a quality curriculum for children and for the ongoing professional growth of caregivers in the area. Since the September 2005 ERO review a new business manager has been appointed and significant changes of personnel have occurred within the leadership team.

This ERO review evaluates the quality of education and care provided by a sample group of educators and the quality of support provided by the Barnardos KidStart management.

Relationships between adults and children are responsive, friendly and trusting. Children enjoy friendships with their peers and play cooperatively together. Educators interact responsively with children, supporting them to make choices and play freely. They choose activities that reflect children’s interests. These are further supplemented through additional resources provided by KidStart. Children experience the wider community through outings to the parks, library and other places of interest. Additional opportunities to socialise with other children through attending the regular playgroup are offered by the network.

A visiting teacher, who is a qualified early childhood teacher, regularly visits educators and children in the educator’s home. This teacher is responsible for providing support and guidance for educators and ensuring the homes meet health and safety standards. All educators have initial and ongoing professional learning opportunities and receive a practice certificate from Barnardos that is renewed every two years.

Planned strategies to build leadership capability have the potential to improve outcomes for children. Self review is developing and new systems are being introduced to support leaders and visiting teachers to maintain consistent practice amongst educators in the network.

ERO and management have agreed that the next steps for development include self review, staff appraisal and systems to develop educator practice in identifying hazards in the environment.

Future Action

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in three years.

2 The Focus of the Review

All ERO education reviews in early childhood focus on the quality of education. For ERO this includes the quality of:

  • the programme provided for children
  • the learning environment
  • the interactions between children and adults.

The Quality of Education

Background

Since the 2005 ERO review restructuring has occurred in Barnardos KidStart services. A new regional business manager was appointed in 2011 and significant changes of personnel have occurred within the leadership team. The business manager has a strong focus on continual improvement. Capacity building within the leadership team to improve the services’ capability to recruit, manage and develop competent educators is a current focus. The vision of Ko ngā tamariki i te tuatahi – Children come First underpins the service.

Areas of good performance

Children spend most of their time in child-initiated play. Their curiosity and interests are stimulated by appropriately presented activities in family homes. ERO observed educators interacting warmly and positively with children, who are secure and confident to explore their learning environment. Regular play experiences outside the home offer children opportunities to interact with other adults and children. Additional opportunities to socialise, through attending the regular playgroup, are offered through the network. Families are carefully matched with educators and programmes respond effectively to children’s needs through flexible routines and timetables. Whanaungatanga is central to the developing organisational culture. A commitment to working collaboratively with parents and whānau is evident.

Educators’ homes visited by ERO are well equipped with a variety of appropriate resources. These are supplemented by the KidStart toy library. Pukapuka, the children’s record of learning prepared by the educators, highlight children’s engagement in the programme and their developing relationships. Letters to the children from the visiting teacher are carefully crafted to show parents how their child’s learning links with Te Whāriki. There is a strong focus on biculturalism across the network. Educators’ homes reflect some aspects of tikanga Māori. The visiting teacher effectively models te reo Māori in her interactions with educators and children.

Educators are supported in developing their practice through a range of professional learning opportunities. The visiting teacher maintains a caring and professional relationship with educators and provides them with regular constructive feedback to build their skills. The weekly playgroup offers additional opportunities for educators across the network to share good practice.

Areas for development and review

Evidence-based self review is in the early stages of development. The focus recently has been on meeting relicensing requirements. The process should continue to be refined to enable managers to make judgements about the quality and impact of the programme for children and their families.

The role of appraisal as a process to support ongoing improvement is developing. Managers are presently modifying current processes to include personal development goals for teachers. Continuing to strengthen appraisal to support ongoing improvement is an agreed priority.

Barnardos KidStart provides appropriate guidelines to support children’s health and wellbeing. These are clearly communicated to educators and monitored regularly by the visiting teacher. To ensure that high standards of safety are maintained at all times, systems to support educators to self-identify hazards in the environment need strengthening.

3 Management Assurance on Compliance Areas

Overview

Before the review, the management and staff of Barnardos KidStart Huia completed an ERO Home-Based Care Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they had taken all reasonable steps to meet their legal obligations related to:

  • administration
  • health, safety and welfare
  • personnel management
  • financial and property management.

During the review, ERO checked the following items because they have a potentially high impact on outcomes for children:

  • emotional safety (including behaviour management, prevention of bullying and abuse)
  • physical safety (including behaviour management, sleeping and supervision practices; accidents and medication; hygiene and routines; travel and excursion policies and procedures)
  • staff qualifications and organisation
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

ERO and the service provider agree that:

The service is not meeting the Equity Funding reporting requirements. In order to address this, the service provider must:

Report to parents and the local community about how they have spent their Equity Funding.

Reporting must include:

  • an outline of the amount received under each Equity Funding component
  • a brief description of the purpose to which the funding was applied
  • a brief outline of the reasons for spending the funding in that way

The report must be included in the service’s annual report for presentation at its annual general meeting.[Early Childhood Funding Handbook- Chapter 10, Equity Funding]

4 Future Action

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services

Central Region

31 January 2013

About the Service

Location

Gisborne

Ministry of Education profile number

55250

Service type

Homebased Network

Chartered under

Education (Home-based Care) Order 1992

Service roll

43

Gender composition

Female 24

Male 19

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Pacific

Other ethnic groups

24

15

1

3

Review team on site

November 2012

Date of this report

31 January 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Accountability Review

August 2005

December 2000