Mangapapa Playcentre - 19/02/2014

Evaluation of Mangapapa Playcentre

How well placed is Mangapapa Playcentre 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.


Mangapapa Playcentre serves the Mangapapa community in Gisborne. It offers three mixed-age, morning sessions a week for a maximum of 25 children, including 15 up to two years old. The paid supervisor is a qualified and registered teacher, with experience at playcentre association level.

The centre philosophy emphasises families growing and learning together. The centre is managed as a parent cooperative and most parents stay through the sessions with their children. The annual management plan, and the performance management goals of the supervisor, align with the strategic direction of the centre.

At the time of this review there was a significant increase in the enrolments of infants and toddlers. Inquiring into, and catering for, the learning needs of this priority group has been a major review focus for this centre.

Governance responsibility is with Tairawhiti Playcentre Association (the association). The association is administered by a board of governors. Recruiting and sustaining members’ commitment on the board has been difficult and this has resulted in many systems and processes not being kept up to date including policy review.

At the time of this review the association does not have the capacity to offer support for improvement to individual services.

This review was part of a cluster of seven playcentre reviews in the Tairawhiti Playcentre Association.

The Review Findings

This playcentre is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

Members are committed to and enact the centre philosophy. Interactions between adults and children are warm, caring and respectful. They respond well to children’s verbal and non-verbal communication. Routines are well established to provide a framework for the day. Children are engaged and freely choose their area of play.

The spacious outdoor environment encourages investigation and exploration. Indoor areas and resources should be developed to provide more diversity and challenge, especially for younger children. Many excursions into the community are undertaken which broaden children’s experiences.

Members have identified the need to develop a programme to more specifically address the learning needs of very young children. Findings from a wide-ranging review are just being implemented. ERO affirms that this is a suitable focus for ongoing development.

Assessment for learning documents highlight children’s engagement and participation in the programme. Formal planning is in place but should be more responsive to individual children's interests, add complexity to learning and reflect progress. Outcomes of the programme should be regularly evaluated to determine how well experiences have supported learning.

The bicultural programme is in the early stages of development. Use of te reo Māori and aspects of tikanga Māori are evident. Te ao Māori should now be further integrated into the wider curriculum by all members. Similarly, literacy and numeracy, while evident, could be more strongly integrated into more areas of the programme.

The supervisor is committed to the Playcentre philosophy and is providing expertise in building capacity of members to improve education. She models good support for learning with children. More explicit communication about these strategies would provide guidance for the wider membership to offer extension and challenge in interactions, especially for older children. The supervisor fosters collaboration amongst the members.

Parents are supportive of each other and the children. They help each other in their developing knowledge of transition to school. Introducing a formal process should further support children and their families. Next steps should include establishing relationships with the local schools and providing basic information for children approaching primary school.

Different ethnic groups are welcomed in this centre and their cultures acknowledged and celebrated. There is a small number of Māori families. Centre members have yet to consider how they might foster success for Māori children, as Maori, in their centre.

Self review has been strengthened since the November ERO 2010 report. A clear process for short and long-term review is well documented. The next step is to strengthen the review process so that it enables members to determine how well their current practices align with their identified indicators of quality. This will assist them to more clearly identify and plan for improvement.

Key Next Steps

Next steps for the playcentre are to:

  • strengthen the planning process to better identify significant learning for individuals, and show how this is might be extended
  • develop and increase the strategies of members to enrich children’s learning, and develop thinking and problem solving skills
  • further develop transition to school processes
  • foster success for Māori, as Māori.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Mangapapa Playcentre 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 Mangapapa Playcentre will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services Central Region (Acting)

19 February 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



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type


Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

25 children, including 15 aged up to 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 17, Girls 10

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā



Review team on site

November 2013

Date of this report

19 February 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

November 2010


Supplementary Review

November 2008


Education Review

June 2007

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.