Nurtured at Home - Auckland 1 - 24/03/2017

1 Evaluation of Nurtured at Home - Auckland 1

How well placed is Nurtured at Home - Auckland 1 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

Nurtured at Home is a privately owned company that provides home-based care for children within seven networks across the wider Auckland region. This Auckland service opened in 2014, and has since extended to networks in the Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Hawkes Bay and Gisborne. The owner is a fully qualified early childhood teacher. She provides comprehensive governance and leadership support for the service and works with a training and development manager to provide professional learning for the teaching team. The Nurtured at Home Auckland service employs seven full-time, fully registered teachers and a manager who provides leadership and management support.

Nurtured at Home serves a culturally diverse community. The majority of children are Tongan, and a small number are Māori. Two of the Auckland networks cater for Chinese communities and are led by a Chinese-speaking teacher. Another network has a growing number of Samoan children and is led by a Samoan-speaking teacher.

Each visiting teacher supports 12 educators in their network. Teachers visit educators at least two or three times a month. They provide educators with resources, and guide them in the care and education of infants, toddlers and older children. Teachers provide educators with written and oral reviews of their practice.

Nurtured at Home - Auckland 1 caters for children and families in the West Auckland area. It is licensed for 80 children, including 40 up to the age of two. Currently 41 children are on this network's roll.

This is the first ERO review for the Nurtured at Home - Auckland 1 service.

This review was part of a cluster of five home-based network reviews in the Nurtured At Home (Auckland) Limited organisation. 

The Review Findings

Visiting teachers forge positive and respectful relationships with educators, children, parents and the extended families they serve. Visiting teachers establish trust with educators. They support them to use teaching strategies and approaches that promote positive outcomes for children. These play ideas and activities include the use of natural materials and home-made educational resources.

Visiting teachers promote connections between educators and children through playgroups and discovery days. These events provide different learning experiences for children and useful educational ideas for educators. These connections prompted a group of Tongan educators to meet as a group in order to enhance the aspirations that Tongan parents have for their children.

In many cases, educators share the same cultural background as the children in their care. This means that care and educational practices are responsive to the cultures of children and their families. Educators prioritise the use of children's first or home languages. Visiting teachers value, and are responsive to the various cultures in each network. They know their educators and children well. Teachers and managers use a variety of successful approaches to maintain connections with parents.

Visiting teachers have good professional knowledge and understanding of early childhood educational theory and practice. They have useful systems for recording children's learning and progress. Their learning stories highlight the connections between children's play and learning. These stories provide good information for parents and educators about what and how children learn. Some educators notice, recognise and respond well to children's interests and strengths.

Visiting teachers maintain clear and useful records of their visits to educators. They identify how educators interact with children, and focus on children's health and wellbeing. They engage educators in discussions about children's learning and support them to reflect on and improve their practice. Educators have access to visiting teachers and to the management team.

The service's philosophy and guiding principles are evident in management and teaching practices. Managers work collaboratively with each other and with the visiting teacher team. They recognise strengths in teachers and educators, and empower others to take on leadership roles. Professional learning for teachers is very well considered and is responsive to the needs of teachers and educators in the home-based care context. They maintain a well-stocked toy library and educational resources. This facility along with equipment such as prams and cots, is available for educators at no cost.

Managers maintain good systems and processes that promote ongoing improvement and accountability. They keep up-to-date with legislative requirements. Recent restructuring of management team responsibilities has further improved the systems and practices across the organisation. This improvement includes a well-executed and up-to-date policy framework.

Managers and visiting teachers have a good understanding of self review as a tool for improvement. The teacher appraisal system supports teachers to reflect on and improve their practice. Managers ensure that strategic planning, service goals, appraisal and professional learning are well aligned. They make strategic appointments to meet the cultural diversity of the community they serve.

Managers express their commitment to bicultural practice and approaches that affirm Māori as tangata whenua. Culturally responsive teaching and learning approaches are included as part of the organisation's professional learning.

Key Next Steps

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

  • strengthening the evaluative component of the service's self review, including having a longer-term focus on a particular area across the whole organisation

  • deepening bicultural practices at all levels of the service, including a focus on the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Nurtured at Home - Auckland 1 completed an ERO Home-based Education and Care 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 Nurtured at Home - Auckland 1 will be in three years.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

24 March 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 Home-based Education and Care Service 

Location

Penrose, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

46382

Institution type

Homebased Network

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

80 children, including up to 40 aged under 2

Service roll

41

Standard or Quality Funded

Standard

Gender composition

Girls 24 Boys 17

Ethnic composition

Māori

Tongan

Niue

Indian

Samoan

Southeast Asian

Fijian

4

24

5

3

2

2

1

Number of qualified coordinators in the network

4

Required ratios of staff educators to children

Under 2

1:2

Over 2

1:4

Review team on site

February 2017

Date of this report

24 March 2017

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 the draft methodology for ERO reviews in Home-based Education and Care Services: July 2014

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.