Lovely Lotus Childcare - 17/07/2014

1 Evaluation of Lovely Lotus Childcare

How well placed is Lovely Lotus Childcare 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.


Lovely Lotus Childcare is privately owned. It caters for 22 children, including 11 aged up to two and five who identify as Māori. Separate areas are organised for over two-year-olds, and infants and toddlers. The centre serves a wide, multicultural community.

Overall responsibility for centre operations lies with the owner manager. She is well supported by two leaders, providing professional guidance for teachers and strategic direction for the service. The owner is committed to employing qualified teachers.

The aim of the collaboratively developed philosophy is for the centre to engage with its community, valuing families and their cultures.

This is the centre’s first report

The Review Findings

The philosophy of the service is well enacted. The curriculum responds to the interests, preferences, strengths and capabilities of young children including priority learners. It aligns closely with the principles and strands of Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum. Learning extends into the community with excursions to parks, libraries and an aquatic centre.

Leaders and teachers have established a culture in which children are valued, celebrated and affirmed for who they are and what they bring to their learning. Teachers are encouraged to lead and given opportunities to develop.

There is a focus on improving the quality of education and care through ongoing systematic self review. Leaders work collaboratively to ensure that sustainable changes to practice provide positive outcomes for children. They model and promote strong teacher understandings about children’s learning, nurture and care.

Teachers use a range of intentional strategies to develop and extend children's learning. Adults evaluate their teaching practices and the impact these have on children’s growing understanding and learning. These processes will be strengthened by clearer alignment to the centre philosophy and self review including appraisal.

Teachers are patient, caring and gentle in their interactions with children. Tuakana teina is clearly evident as older children care for and assist those younger. Individuals are empowered to take increased responsibility for themselves and others. They are supported by adults to lead their learning.

Assessment and planning focuses on developing learning opportunities for children. Assessment information is kept in well presented portfolios that are available to children. They can revisit and share their learning with others. Parents sometimes contribute their own stories and photographs to these books. Leaders and teachers are working to increase parents’ contributions to assessment.

Teachers value and acknowledge parents’ and whānau aspirations for their children. Parents express high levels of satisfaction with the service.

Appropriate adult to child ratios for infants and toddlers help teachers provide high levels of care. Environments are calm and peaceful. Thoughtful consideration is given to transition practices as children move through the centre. All children have a primary caregiver who has a good understanding of attachment theory and consistent care giving. Children are confident, capable communicators.

Teachers integrate te reo Māori meaningfully into the programme. They give consideration to the culture and language of each child and seek to sustain children’s cultural identity.

Teachers actively support children’s transition to primary school through visits and providing parents with information. Leaders identify that strengthening links with local schools should further assist children to make a good transition.

Key Next Steps

Centre management and ERO agree that:

  • staff should continue to focus on increasing parents' contributions to assessment
  • the performance of the owner, who also teaches, should be appraised
  • leaders and teachers should more clearly align the centre's philosophy and teaching practices with appraisal and self review to further enhance outcomes for children.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Lovely Lotus Childcare 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 Lovely Lotus Childcare will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services Central Region

17 July 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


Palmerston North

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

22 children, including up to 11 aged up to 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 18, Girls 12

Ethnic composition

Other ethnic groups


Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2014

Date of this report

17 July 2014

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.