Childcare Plus Learning Centre - 19/02/2018

1 Evaluation of Childcare Plus Learning Centre

How well placed is Childcare Plus Learning Centre 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.


Childcare Plus Learning Centre is a well-established, privately-owned education and care centre catering for up to 20 children over the age of two years. The centre operates in a modified house and garden with all children sharing the indoor and outdoor spaces. The ownership of the centre changed in June 2015, and it is now run by two owners/directors who work with the staff as qualified early childhood teachers.

Since the change of ownership there have been staff changes. There are currently three qualified teachers, including the owners, and one teacher in training. The centre also employs a cook and part-time teachers.

Most children who attend the centre live locally, while others have parents who come into the area for work. Many children come from homes where a language other than English is spoken. They come from a variety of cultural backgrounds and approximately half are of Chinese heritage. While some children attend half-day sessions, most attend for the full day.

The centre's philosophy promotes partnership with parents, respectful relationships, and valuing children as individuals. It identifies that the teachers' role is to support children's inquiry and imagination by working alongside them, allowing time and space for them to grow and develop.

The 2014 ERO report commented on the positive and affirming relationships in the centre, and the inclusive curriculum that supported children to learn through play. The centre was well managed, using internal evaluation to guide improvement.

The previous centre managers had identified that strategic planning and appraisal processes needed strengthening, and that the teachers' role in supporting learners needed clarifying. Good progress has been made in improving appraisal practices.

The Review Findings

The centre continues to provide a family atmosphere that welcomes children and their families into a settled, calm environment. Children experience respectful relationships with adults and build friendships among their peer group.

Children are able to make choices from the activities and areas of play that teachers make available for them. Teachers have reviewed the structure of the day to ensure that children get extended periods of time for uninterrupted play. The layout and resourcing of the physical environment encourage children to explore.

Managers and teachers take time to get to know the children, and are increasingly focusing the programme around individual children. They are beginning to observe children more closely, and talk with them to identify their interests and dispositions for learning. They are becoming better informed about how to support the children as learners.

Teachers encourage parents/whānau to contribute to the curriculum. The use of electronic communication is resulting in increased participation by families in assessing children's learning and programme planning. Teachers encourage parents to share aspects of the children's cultures with the other children that attend the centre. Matariki and Diwali are now an integral part of the curriculum. Managers and teachers recognise the need to increase their knowledge of te ao Māori and to introduce more aspects of Māori culture, including te reo Māori, into the programme.

Teachers and managers promote the learning of early literacy and mathematics skills and knowledge though children's play. They share with parents the approach to this learning, as explained in Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.

Planning, assessment and evaluation processes could be strengthened to support teachers' commitment to more individual planning. Parents are encouraged to share more information about their children's home experiences and cultures so that this information can inform teachers' programme planning. Teachers could now use learning stories more to show how children's learning has developed over time, and how teachers might extend their learning.

Since taking ownership of the centre, the managers have reviewed all policies to ensure that they meet current legal requirements. Appraisal systems have been reviewed to ensure that the education council requirements are met, and teachers are appraised and provided with professional learning relevant to their development goals.

Internal evaluation is used well to improve systems and practices. All staff engage in planned and spontaneous reviews. Parents are consulted as part of the internal evaluation. A recent review has led to improvements in processes to support children's transition to school.

Key Next Steps

Centre staff have identified appropriate next steps for ongoing improvement, including:

  • strengthening strategic planning by developing specific improvement goals and action plans
  • participation in relevant professional learning to strengthen planning, assessment and evaluation in order to extend children's learning through play
  • continuing to develop strategies to support children's literacy and numeracy through play, and children's oral language skill development.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Childcare Plus Learning Centre 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 Childcare Plus Learning Centre will be in three years.

Julie Foley
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

19 February 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 


New Lynn, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

20 children over the age of 2 years

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls       13
Boys        8

Ethnic composition

Sri Lankan
other Ethnicities


Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

December 2017

Date of this report

19 February 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

August 2014

Education Review

June 2011

Education Review

May 2008

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.