Blossoms Educare Onehunga - 27/06/2018

1 Evaluation of Blossoms Educare Onehunga

How well placed is Blossoms Educare Onehunga 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.

Background

Blossoms Educare Onehunga is an early childhood education and care centre located in Onehunga, Auckland. The service is licensed for 83 children over the age of two years, including a maximum of 20 children under the age of two years. The centre's roll is multicultural with a majority of Pacific children attending from the local community.

The centre is housed within a new, purpose-built building that opened in 2016. This is the first ERO report for this service. The centre is one of 11, operating under the larger Blossoms Educare organisation.

The centre owner is fully involved in the daily operation of the service. As a qualified early childhood teacher, she supports the development of curriculum, assessment and the evaluation of children's learning. An experienced centre manager has overall responsibility for the centre's learning programmes and activities.

Children play in two age-related learning environments. The area for children under two years is designed for babies to have their own space. They are also able to join in with older toddlers in the adjacent space. The learning room for children two to five years old is a large open environment with two distinct areas designed around a central kitchen. Each room is professionally led by an experienced team leader.

The centre's philosophy highlights the importance of whānau partnership in children's learning. Leaders and teachers make equitable provision for children and families to attend the centre where transport needs are a barrier.

The Review Findings

Children benefit from supportive relationships between child, teacher and family that foster children's wellbeing and their sense of belonging. Centre staff are working towards effective partnerships with families that promote and develop children's individualised learning.

The centre is purposefully working with the Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum document, to establish good consistent practice in early childhood education and care. Children under two years receive good quality care. Teachers are respectful of babies and toddlers and encourage strong, affirming attachments between children, teachers and parents. The relaxed, open ambience of the under two area supports children's sense of belonging. Teachers work closely with families to ensure home routines are followed.

The centre's learning environment encourages children to play cooperatively and collaboratively. The learning rooms are open and well designed to allow children to select and locate their play and learning resources. The range of learning experiences gives opportunity for staff to promote children's social skills and friendships. Some early literacy and numeracy skills are integrated into the context of play.

Teachers use assessment practices that respond well to what they notice about each child's interests and strengths. They share this information with families through learning stories and conversations, encouraging parents to participate and contribute to their children's learning progress.

The centre leaders are developing processes to ensure that teachers are well supported to keep their practice current. Professional development is accessed that is suitable for teachers' individual and collective needs. Staff appraisal and registration systems meet the requirements of the Education Council. Organisation leaders are working towards more clarity in the documentation of the appraisal process.

Centre staff are committed to engaging with te reo me te ao Māori. Children's interests, centre celebrations and events reflect bicultural New Zealand, Pacific cultures and the other ethnicities of the children who attend the service. Families feel a sense of welcome and inclusion.

The larger Blossoms Educare organisation provides the centre with good processes, systems and updated policies. Strategic planning is in place for the centre, and would benefit from more regular evaluation of progress against the stated goals. Evaluation is becoming more responsive to identified areas for service improvement.

The centre philosophy is being meaningfully reviewed as centre practice continues to develop past the establishment phase of 2016.

Key Next Steps

Centre staff agree that next priorities for centre development are:

  • further focusing on children's individual learning dispositions

  • more explicitly planning intended learning outcomes for children in centre programmes

  • extending opportunities to develop parent learning partnerships

  • providing professional development in leadership for centre managers.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Blossoms Educare Onehunga 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 Blossoms Educare Onehunga will be in three years.

Julie Foley

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

27 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

Location

Onehunga, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

47041

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

83 children, including up to 20 aged under 2

Service roll

81

Gender composition

Girls 44 Boys 37

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Samoan
Indian
Tongan
Fijian
Niuean
Cook Islands Māori
other

12
7
14
10
10
8
5
4
11

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:4

Better than minimum requirements

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2017

Date of this report

27 June 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

No previous ERO reports

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.