Jamieson Kindergarten - 06/11/2014

1 Evaluation of Jamieson Kindergarten

How well placed is Jamieson 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

Jamieson Kindergarten is located in Hamilton North, near Forest Lake School. It provides sessional education and care for children from three years to school age. The kindergarten is licensed for up to 40 children over the age of two years old. Afternoon sessions are currently limited to 20 children who remain at the kindergarten for the school day. Of the 50 children enrolled at this kindergarten, 12 are identified as Māori.

The head teacher and two members of the teaching team have remained together at the kindergarten for many years. A long-serving teacher and former head teacher retired from her position in the weeks preceding this ERO review and an acting part-time teacher now teaches during morning sessions. Since the 2011 ERO review, there have been improvements to the outdoor area. These enhance opportunities for children to explore the natural world and to access physical challenges and play activities of their choice.

Children and families from the community and beyond are always welcome, and many have a long association with the kindergarten. Parents are regularly invited to contribute their thoughts and opinions about the programme. Teachers have recently engaged in professional development about positive guidance for children and assessment, planning and self review. A review of kindergarten routines has resulted in more time for children to engage in sustained play activities of their choice. Systems to ensure smooth transition to the nearby school are well established.

The kindergarten operates under the umbrella of the Waikato Kindergarten Association (WKA), which is a charitable trust, and does not operate for profit. The strategic direction of the association is guided by the overarching statement, ‘Every child reaching their full potential’. The WKA has a commitment to providing quality, inclusive services that effectively meet the diverse educational needs of all children attending. All WKA kindergartens provide an Enviroschools focus as a key curriculum feature to encourage children to better understand caring for the environment.

The Educational Service Manager (ESM) monitors and reports to the association on the kindergarten’s quality of education. A kaumātua from Tainui provides advice, guidance and support about Māori language, culture and identity. The kindergarten’s administrative responsibilities are well supported by association resource personnel.

The kindergarten benefits from the WKA's clear guidelines and expectations for practice and the availability of good self-review processes for monitoring and evaluating the quality of education and care it provides for children.

This review was part of a cluster of 12 kindergarten reviews in the Waikato Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Jamieson Kindergarten is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

Children benefit from positive interactions and relationships where inclusion and friendship are promoted. Tuakana-teina is naturally expressed as children support each other in learning and achieving success. Teachers and children have fun together, sharing humour and enjoying their learning and play. Teachers have responsive conversations with children that challenge their thinking and literacy skills. Te reo Māori is well integrated into discussions and conversations. Children know waiata very well and participate enthusiastically in singing and actions.

Recently revised routines have resulted in more time for child-directed, sustained and uninterrupted play. Teachers respond continually to children’s emerging interests and provide opportunities to extend their skills in music, physical challenges and creative expression. They skilfully integrate opportunities for children to develop their early mathematical concepts and writing skills within the varied contexts of their play. Children who remain at the kindergarten for both sessions have opportunities to further extend their interests and skills during afternoon play. They see themselves as confident, capable learners and communicators.

The curriculum is well resourced to respond to children’s interests. Teachers provide a comprehensive range of puzzles and activities which are progressive in their complexity and foster children’s developing interests and skills in many aspects of literacy and mathematics. An Enviroschools' approach provides children with opportunities to learn about and care for the natural environment. Computers are used as tools for learning and research. Learning is becoming more visible to parents through wall displays, portfolios and digital communication.

Teachers know children and families well and have established a welcoming environment and a strong sense of community among teachers, families and children. Twice-yearly interviews with parents ensure that families can share their goals and aspirations for their children with teachers. Portfolios include records of parent meetings with clear goals, teacher responses and outcomes for children. Parents who spoke with ERO appreciate teachers’ approachability and immediate opportunities to see their children’s play and learning through digital media. They are increasingly responding to this information. Family evenings are appreciated and well supported.

The head teacher is a reflective leader and practitioner. She sets clear expectations and has a shared vision for further developing the kindergarten’s programme, practice and environment. She recognises and values the skills and interests of the teaching team and has implemented opportunities for shared leadership. Self review is developing and includes regular consultation with parents.

Key Next Steps

ERO, the ESM, the head teacher and teachers agree that the kindergarten’s next steps are to further develop strategic self review in order to strengthen:

  • philosophy development and implementation
  • assessment, planning and evaluation
  • visibility at children’s level of themselves as learners and decision makers.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

6 November 2014

2 Information about the Early Childhood Service

Location

Hamilton

Ministry of Education profile number

5149

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll

50

Gender composition

Boys 30

Girls 20

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Asian

Samoan

Other

12

33

2

1

2

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

September 2014

Date of this report

6 November 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

February 2011

 

Education Review

January 2008

 

Education Review

November 2004

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.

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.