Northcote Point Community Creche - 02/09/2015

1. Evaluation of Northcote Point Community Creche

How well placed is Northcote Point Community Creche 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

Northcote Point Crèche was established in 1984. It is based in a heritage building, the old Council Chambers/Library. The crèche is currently carrying out an extensive upgrade of the outdoor facilities. It is licensed to provide care and education for 26 children, including up to 10 children under the age of two years.

The governance committee is ably managed by parents. They hold meetings once or twice per term and parents are encouraged to join and support these meetings. The committee is responsible for overseeing staff appointments and staff support, strategic development and ensuring legislative requirements are in operation.

The four permanent staff are supported by parents/caregivers who are rostered as parent helpers. Since the 2012 ERO report, a new head teacher and administration support person has been appointed. The head teacher manages the day-to-day running of the centre and mentors teachers and parent helpers in curriculum delivery.

The centre’s philosophy values child-initiated learning and expresses a commitment to bicultural practices. These aspects are acknowledged and celebrated in the programme, which is underpinned by Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.

The 2012 ERO report identified good quality adult interactions with children and noted that children responded positively to adults. These aspects remain a key feature in the centre’s programme.

The Review Findings

The centre’s highly effective and inclusive teaching practices affirm and build on the strengths children bring. As a result children are confident and are well supported to be independent. They are keen learners and engage well in the range of activities teachers provide. Children are given the space to initiate their own play and conversations with each other. Teachers are unhurried and calm and this allows time for children to explore their environment.

The learning environment is used well to enrich children’s learning and to promote play that challenges children’s thinking. Teachers’ review of the learning environment has resulted in more provision of quality resources that provoke children’s thinking to enquire and explore.

Teachers plan and implement a high quality curriculum for children that reflects the centre’s philosophy and Te Whāriki, the New Zealand early childhood curriculum. The curriculum also prioritises Maori language, culture and values. Teachers are committed to further continue strengthening their bicultural journey.

The programme is holistic, inclusive of all children and provides authentic learning experiences. Attractively presented programme documentation shows how children’s interests and parent aspirations guide the programme. Children’s portfolios are highly valued and are often added to by families. They clearly show children’s learning journey.

Teachers are reflective and use self review effectively to improve their teaching practices and learning outcomes for children. Recent self review has resulted in improvements to centre resources and to programmes for children, including routines designed to start the day off well for children. Changes are resulting in children being better engaged in the learning programme.

Partnerships between parents and teachers are strong. They are respectful and responsive to each other and to children. Parents receive clear and open communication from the centre. The contributions parents make to their children’s learning programmes are appreciated by teachers. Parents value the culturally diverse and inclusive programme teachers promote. Parents are positive about the well managed programme. They appreciate how teachers are building positive networking relationships within the community through fundraising events and working bees to maintain and improve the facility. These good practices contribute to parents’ and children’s sense of belonging to their centre.

Strong professional leadership enables the centre to maintain its focus on providing high quality early childhood education and care. Positive working relationships, mentoring and collaboration between management and staff help create a culture of trust and respect.

The management committee provides very good governance. They are active and committed to their role and have developed robust systems that clearly demonstrate their roles and responsibilities. They support the head teacher and teachers well. The committee values and uses self review to build on their knowledge, to measure their progress, and to make strategic decisions about the centre’s future direction. They could further strengthen this by aligning their strategic plan to an annual plan that unpacks how progress against strategic goals will be achieved.

Key Next Steps

Centre leaders, parents and teachers agree that they could continue to strengthen:

  • the programme to further recognise children’s language, culture and identity
  • teachers’ shared understanding of effective teaching practice with parent helpers
  • the use of questioning to prompt and deepen children’s learning experiences and language development.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Northcote Point Community Creche 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 Northcote Point Community Creche will be in four years.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

2 September 2015

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

Northcote Point, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

20119

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

26 children, including up to 10 aged under 2 years old

Service roll

71

Gender composition

Boys 38

Girls 33

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

other Asian

other European

Indian

5

60

3

2

1

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

50-79%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:4

Better than minimum requirements

 

Over 2

1:5

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2015

Date of this report

2 September 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

July 2012

 

Education Review

February 2009

 

Education Review

March 2006

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.