Montessori Monavale - 28/07/2017

1 Evaluation of Montessori MonaVale

How well placed is Montessori MonaVale to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Montessori Mona Vale is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

ERO's findings that support this overall judgement are summarised below.


Montessori Mona Vale is a small centre catering for children from two years to school age. It provides a Montessori approach to education. Many aspects of Te Whāriki, the New Zealand early childhood curriculum, are also embedded into the programme. The centre has a high proportion of children from different cultures. Many of the children do not have English as their home language.

The majority of teachers are qualified early childhood teachers. A number of teachers also hold Montessori qualifications or are working towards this qualification. Teachers are representative of the home cultures of the families attending.

An experienced centre manager is responsible for the day-to-day centre operations. A BestStart business manager and a professional services manager visit the centre regularly to support the service.

Since the 2014 ERO review the centre has made good progress in meeting the recommendations in that report. The centre philosophy now reflects the unique context of this centre. Assessment and planning for individual children has significantly improved and bicultural perspectives are more evident in the programme.

Montessori Mona Vale operates under BestStart Ltd.

The Review Findings

Children are well supported in their learning by a deliberate, well planned and implemented approach. Teachers have high expectations and an in-depth knowledge of each child's learning and achievement. They make very good use of the Montessori approach to focus children on their learning so that they experience successful outcomes.

Children are self-managing and independent. Teachers make sure children know the routines and expectations for using the resources and working with others. Children are respectful and highly focused on their work and its completion.

Children's home cultures are valued and included in the programme. Family members willingly share their culture to help make it meaningful and well understood by children and staff.

Children's learning opportunities are enhanced by their easy access to the wide range of well- presented resources. The programme has a very strong focus on developing literacy and mathematical skills and knowledge. Teachers are focusing more on building children's interests and reflecting these in the programme.

Assessment and planning for individual children effectively supports teaching and learning. Teachers skilfully identify children's learning and their role in promoting the child's learning and skill development. Many teachers also identify clear goals to further develop children's learning. Parent aspirations are requested but documentation has yet to show how these aspirations are used in planning and assessment processes.

Leaders have high expectations and are highly focused on improving staff performance and increasing their skills and knowledge. They make effective use of teacher strengths and interests to extend the learning of children and other staff. There are close links between the strategic plan goals, professional development and staff appraisal. Progress towards achieving the goals is carefully monitored by internal evaluation.

The centre manager, business manager and professional services manager work effectively in partnership to implement BestStart systems to ensure accountability and continuous improvement. They have clear expectations for teaching and learning and appropriate systems for supporting teachers' and leaders' professional growth.

Key Next Steps

Centre mangers and ERO agree that key next steps for the service include:

  • strengthening internal evaluation by focusing more on identifying the outcomes for children

  • continuing to increase the bicultural component of the programme, including supporting Māori children to achieve success as Māori

  • improving group planning and evaluation by more clearly identifying goals, teaching approaches and outcomes for children

  • continuing to integrate the Montessori and Te Whāriki curriculum principles for learning and teaching in the programme.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Montessori MonaVale 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 Montessori MonaVale will be in three years.

Dr Lesley Patterson
Deputy Chief Review Officer - Southern (Te Waipounamu)

28 July 2017

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

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys: 16

Girls: 16

Ethnic composition



Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2



Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

June 2017

Date of this report

28 July 2017

Most recent ERO report


Education Review

May 2014

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.