Kidspace Early Learning Centre - 18/06/2012

1. The Education Review Office (ERO) Evaluation

Kidspace Early Learning Centre is a privately owned service that opened in May 2010. It is located in Tauranga and operates in a purpose-built facility and caters for children from infancy to school age. The centre is licensed to accommodate 25 children, including 5 under the age of two. It has benefitted from consistent leadership and staffing. This is the centre’s first report from ERO.

The centre manager and head teacher are committed to providing a high-quality service for children and their families. They are well informed about best practice in early childhood education and together have established a collaborative staff culture. Teachers respond readily to children’s interests, including the promotion of early literacy and mathematics development.

The indoor areas provide children with ready access to a wide range of age-appropriate, good-quality resources. Children take pride in assisting teachers to maintain and care for equipment and materials. A next step is to review the outdoor area in order to further encourage children’s exploration and learning.

Teachers are responsive to children’s individual care and learning needs. They actively participate in children’s play to sustain engagement. Teachers use a range of strategies to effectively promote children’s thinking and problem solving. In particular, infants receive high-quality care and nurture, with a strong emphasis on having fun. Children know each other well and ERO observed many examples of children engaged in sustained play in groups and activities of their choice.

Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the service again in three years.

2. Review Priorities

The Focus of the Review

Before the review, the management of Kidspace Early Learning Centre was invited to consider its priorities for review using guidelines and resources provided by ERO. ERO also used documentation provided by the centre to contribute to the scope of the review.

The detailed priorities for review were then determined following a discussion between the ERO review team and the management and staff. This discussion focused on existing information held by the centre (including self-review information) and the extent to which potential issues for review contributed to positive outcomes for children atKidspace Early Learning Centre.

All ERO education reviews in early childhood focus on the quality of education. For ERO this includes the quality of:

  • the programme provided for children;
  • the learning environment; and
  • the interactions between children and adults.

ERO’s findings in these areas are set out below.

The Quality of Education

Background

Kidspace Early Learning Centre is a privately owned service that opened in May 2010. It operates in a purpose-built facility and caters for children from infancy to school age. The centre has benefitted from consistent leadership and staffing. This is the centre’s first report from ERO.

Areas of strength

Leadership and management: The centre manager and head teacher are committed to providing a high-quality service for children and their families. They are well informed about best practice in early childhood education. Together they have established a collaborative staff culture that is underpinned by positive, constructive professional relationships and generous provision for professional development. Effective administration systems, including staff appraisal and self review, provide a sound basis for continuing improvement.

Programme: The philosophy and programme appropriately emphasise the education and care of children as individuals according to the goals and principles of Te Whāriki. The programme is made visible to parents and reflects a variety of interests and celebrations that promote children’s learning, including child-centred focuses on early literacy and mathematics development. Teachers use community resources to extend children’s interests and experiences. They are gaining confidence in the use of te reo Māori.

Programme records are attractively presented and accessible for children to revisit and discuss their learning experiences. Portfolios provide parents and children with an attractive record of participation in centre activities. Recent initiatives in teachers’ assessment practice are enabling them to focus more specifically on learning progress and development.

Environment: The indoor areas provide children with ready access to a wide range of age-appropriate, good-quality resources. Teachers present children’s art in attractive displays. Children benefit from using computers for a variety of learning experiences. They take pride in assisting teachers to maintain and care for equipment and materials.

Interactions: Teachers are responsive to children’s individual care and learning needs. They actively participate in children’s play to sustain engagement and use a range of strategies to effectively promote children’s thinking and problem solving. In particular infants receive high-quality care and nurture, with a strong emphasis on having fun. Parents’ are actively encouraged to participate in centre activities and events. Children know each other well and ERO observed many examples of children engaged in sustained play in groups and activities of their choice.

Agreed priorities

ERO and centre managers agree that areas for further consideration include:

  • developing a long-term, strategic approach to centre development;
  • continuing to review and develop the outdoor environment to further enable children to explore nature and experience a wider range of physical challenges; and
  • increasing the use of parents’ and children’s perspectives in assessment.

3. Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff of Kidspace Early 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:

  • administration;
  • health, safety and welfare;
  • personnel management; and
  • financial and property management.

During the review, ERO looked at the service’s documentation, including policies, procedures and records of recent use of procedures. ERO also checked elements of the following areas that have a potentially high impact on outcomes for children:

  • emotional safety (including behaviour management, prevention of bullying and abuse);
  • physical safety (including behaviour management, sleeping and supervision practices; accidents and medication; hygiene and routines; travel and excursion policies and procedures);
  • staff qualifications and organisation; and
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

4. Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the service again in three years.

Makere Smith

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region (Acting)

About the Centre

Location

Tauranga

Ministry of Education profile number

45439

Type

Education and Care Service (All Day)

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

25 children, including up to 5 aged under 2

Roll number

39

Gender composition

Girls 21

Boys 18

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā 19

NZ Māori 10

Samoan 4

Indian 2

Other 4

Review team on site

April 2012

Date of this report

18 June 2012

Previous ERO reports

This is ERO’s first review of this centre

To the Parents and Community of Kidspace Early Learning Centre

These are the findings of the Education Review Office’s latest report on Kidspace Early Learning Centre.

Kidspace Early Learning Centre is a privately owned service that opened in May 2010. It is located in Tauranga and operates in a purpose-built facility and caters for children from infancy to school age. The centre is licensed to accommodate 25 children, including 5 under the age of two. It has benefitted from consistent leadership and staffing. This is the centre’s first report from ERO.

The centre manager and head teacher are committed to providing a high-quality service for children and their families. They are well informed about best practice in early childhood education and together have established a collaborative staff culture. Teachers respond readily to children’s interests, including the promotion of early literacy and mathematics development.

The indoor areas provide children with ready access to a wide range of age-appropriate, good-quality resources. Children take pride in assisting teachers to maintain and care for equipment and materials. A next step is to review the outdoor area in order to further encourage children’s exploration and learning.

Teachers are responsive to children’s individual care and learning needs. They actively participate in children’s play to sustain engagement. Teachers use a range of strategies to effectively promote children’s thinking and problem solving. In particular, infants receive high-quality care and nurture, with a strong emphasis on having fun. Children know each other well and ERO observed many examples of children engaged in sustained play in groups and activities of their choice.

Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the service again in three years.

When ERO has reviewed an early childhood centre we encourage management to inform their community of any follow up action they plan to take. You should talk to the management or contact person if you have any questions about this evaluation, the full ERO report or their future intentions.

If you would like a copy of the full report, please contact the centre or see the ERO website, http://www.ero.govt.nz.

Makere Smith

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region (Acting)

GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT REVIEWS

About ERO

ERO is an independent, external evaluation agency that undertakes reviews of schools and early childhood services throughout New Zealand.

About ERO Reviews

ERO follows a set of standard procedures to conduct reviews. The purpose of each review is to:

  • improve quality of education for children in early childhood centres; and
  • provide information to parents, communities and the Government.

Reviews are intended to focus on outcomes for children and build on each centre’s self review.

Review Focus

ERO’s framework for reviewing and reporting is based on four review strands.

  • Quality of Education – including the quality of the programme provided for children, the quality of the learning environment and the quality of the interactions between staff and children and how these impact on outcomes for children.
  • Additional Review Priorities – other aspects of the operation of a centre, may be included in the review. ERO will not include this strand in all reviews.
  • Compliance with Legal Requirements – assurance that this centre has taken all reasonable steps to meet legal requirements.

Review Coverage

ERO reviews do not cover every aspect of centre performance and each ERO report may cover different issues. The aim is to provide information on aspects that are central to positive outcomes for children and useful to this centre.

Review Recommendations

Most ERO reports include recommendations for improvement. A recommendation on a particular issue does not necessarily mean that a centre is performing poorly in relation to that issue. There is no direct link between the number of recommendations in this report and the overall performance of this centre.