Glenview Free Kindergarten - 01/10/2014

1 Evaluation of Glenview Free Kindergarten

How well placed is Glenview Free Kindergarten 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

Glenview Free Kindergarten is located in Timaru and is part of the South Canterbury Free Kindergarten Association. Since October 2013, the kindergarten has followed a model that matches the school day. It caters for children aged from two years to school age. Forty children attend in the morning and about thirty stay for the afternoon.

There have been significant staff changes over the last year. Five qualified teachers now work at the kindergarten. The teachers have continued to work on the recommendations from the 2011 ERO report. They now make much greater use of te reo Māori in their programmes, and are continuing to develop their systems for assessment, planning and evaluation and self review. The kindergarten community has upgraded the playground since the last ERO review to make better use of the outdoor space.

Glenview Kindergarten is part of a group of kindergartens and schools who meet to support children’s successful transition to school. This review was part of a cluster of 11 kindergarten reviews in the South Canterbury Free Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

The children have a strong sense of belonging at the kindergarten and go out of their way to care for each other. Children are settled and become engrossed in their play in groups or by themselves. They make their own choices about where to play and what to do.

Children have access to a wide range of interesting learning activities in the indoor and outdoor areas. The teachers set out the equipment and resources thoughtfully and attractively. There are opportunities for children to challenge themselves, solve problems, and be independent.

The teachers have nurturing and caring relationships with the children. They notice the children’s interests and build on them. This allows some play ideas to continue over several days. Teachers have identified some children who require extra support around speech and language and they have developed useful strategies to help them.

Parents are very much a part of the kindergarten community. They feel comfortable to spend time with their children in the kindergarten, and contribute in many ways.

Children benefit from a wide range of books, wall displays and natural materials that reflect the bicultural dimension of Aotearoa/New Zealand. Teachers are supporting children to learn:

  • a centre mihi and about important local landmarks

  • waiata, karakia and te reo Māori

  • concepts such as ako (teachers and children learning together).

The teachers are developing a plan to build stronger partnerships with Māori whānau so their children can be confident in their language, culture and identity at the kindergarten.

As part of the review, ERO investigated how well the programme supported children to develop early mathematics concepts. The programme supports children’s mathematics learning through everyday experiences such as baking, counting games, sorting and measuring. At a later date the teachers should further develop teaching and learning of mathematics in the kindergarten.

In 2014 the teachers have worked as a team to:

  • establish a clear vision for the kindergarten based around partnerships with families

  • make the vision for children’s learning more visible to parents

  • find ways of working together that make the most of individual teachers’ strengths

  • implement new systems for individual and group planning that incorporate input from both parents and children.

These positive initiatives are in the early stages of development.

The head teacher and the association’s senior teacher are providing effective leadership to the teaching team through this period of change at the kindergarten.

Key Next Steps

Kindergarten leaders and ERO agree that the key next steps are to continue the positive initiatives that are already underway. They agree they should do this by:

  • increasing the team’s understanding of self review

  • using self review to monitor the progress and effectiveness of recent changes

  • developing the kindergarten’s strategic plan and aligning it with the associations.

Governance

The South Canterbury Free Kindergarten Association is governed by a board and managed by a newly-appointed general manager. The board:

  • has a strong commitment to teaching and learning

  • seeks parents’ views about important matters in the association

  • has made changes to the roll size and opening hours of the kindergartens to be more responsive to community needs and maintain the financial viability of the association

  • is very responsive to important government initiatives such as ensuring educational success for all children.

Next steps for the board are to:

  • know more about its roles and responsibilities as the governing body

  • develop strategic planning

  • ensure that reports review how well the association’s goals are met, are more evaluative and are better used for future planning

  • refine appraisal systems to ensure that staff and teachers more formally receive critical feedback about their work.

The senior teachers provide useful ongoing professional development and maintain a strong focus on teaching and learning to the kindergartens within the association. They have shared with the teachers at Glenview Kindergarten the expectations they have for teaching and learning and how well they think the team is meeting those expectations.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Glenview Free Kindergarten 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 Glenview Free Kindergarten will be in three years.

Graham Randell

National Manager Review Services Southern Region

1 October 2014

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

Timaru

Ministry of Education profile number

5472

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children over 2 years of age

Service roll

48

Gender composition

Girls: 26

Boys: 22

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Other ethnicities

3

42

3

Percentage of qualified teachers 0-49% 50-79% 80% Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

Not applicable

 
 

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

July 2014

Date of this report

1 October 2014

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review

June 2011

 

Education Review

November 2007

 

Education Review

November 2004

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.