Kids Count - Weymouth - 18/10/0213

1 Evaluation of Kids Count - Weymouth

How well placed is Kids Count - Weymouth 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

This is one of three Kids Count centres based in South Auckland. Kids Count Limited provides umbrella policy and procedural guidelines for its centres. It uses additional Ministry of Education funding to implement a 'wrap around' service for low-income families who have difficulty accessing early childhood services. It provides transport for children to attend centre sessions, promotes parenting courses, and makes information about early childhood education and care available for parents. The service has a family liaison officer to help strengthen partnerships between the centres and whānau.

Kids Count – Weymouth offers full time and sessional education and care for up to 50 children between the ages of two and five years. Most children attend for the twenty hours offered free. Centre leaders are working with families to help reduce transience and to help achieve more regular attendance by children. The curriculum they offer has a particular focus on preparing children for learning and supporting their transition to school.

The centre’s philosophy stresses the importance of having nurturing relationships and also having an environment that engages children in learning and supports them to become confident and competent learners. Most of the children who attend are Māori and/or Pacific. The centre was licensed in April 2013 and this is its first ERO review.

The Review Findings

Children at the centre are valued and affirmed for who they are and what they bring to their learning. They experience respectful and affirming relationships with nurturing staff who are focused on their needs. Children are well supported to develop social competencies. They benefit from how successfully teachers have established an environment that promotes their learning and their confidence with language. Children respond positively to this environment and show a willingness to engage in new learning. The centre’s inclusive approaches ensure that all children, including those with special or high needs, are welcomed and appropriately catered for.

Teachers are committed to the centre philosophy. Centre documents and displays demonstrate the good range of learning activities provided for children. Many early literacy and numeracy learning experiences are effectively integrated into children’s play and routines, and the centre uses some effective strategies for helping children transition to school. Teachers are now improving how well they formally document children’s learning and identify learning outcomes and intentions for children. Such improvement should result in a programme that is more directly related to children’s emerging interests and overall developmental needs.

Staff come from many cultures and well presented displays reinforce New Zealand’s bicultural and multicultural makeup. Many good practices reflect the bicultural expectations of Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum. All children hear, see and participate in tangible examples of te reo me ōna tikanga Māori. The employment of a resource person for tikanga Māori further builds their skills and knowledge. Māori children are supported to succeed as Māori through these good practices and through the centre’s efforts to engage more successfully with whānau of all the children who attend.

Centre leaders set high expectations, and significant improvements have occurred since the centre was licensed. Centre leaders have worked collaboratively with staff to form a unified team focused on maximising children’s learning opportunities. They are energetic, enthusiastic and forward looking. The leadership team supports teachers’ professional development and model good teaching practices. Thoughtful and realistic self review guides centre operations and helps ensure responsiveness to whānau needs. High quality leadership and increasingly effective long-term planning position the centre very well to retain its strengths and engage in ongoing improvement.

Key Next Steps

ERO supports the self review findings of centre leaders, particularly in regard to:

  • maintaining the current focus on supporting children’s attendance and minimising the impact that transience has on children’s early education opportunities
  • seeking more effective ways of developing relationships with parents and communicating with them about their children’s learning and early childhood education in general.
  • ERO also agrees with the plans of centre leaders to improve the programme by:
  • extending the challenge of the programme for children and involving children more in the life of the local community
  • extending children’s opportunities for self management
  • continuing to ensure that transition to school focuses on developmentally appropriate practices, and capturing such practices more directly in centre documents
  • continuing improvements in the outdoor play area, and in increasing the visibility of children’s cultures in the centre and its programmes.

ERO is confident that the centre has the capacity and capability to undertake these actions.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Kids Count - Weymouth 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 Kids Count - Weymouth will be in three years.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

18 October 2013

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

Weymouth, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

45920

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

50 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll

93

Gender composition

Boys 54

Girls 39

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Samoan

Cook Island Māori

Tongan

Fijian

Indian

Other

51

5

11

5

5

3

2

11

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 2013

Date of this report

18 October 2013

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.