PAUA Early Childhood Homebased Care Service - 21/08/2012

The Education Review Office (ERO) Evaluation

PAUA Early Childhood - Bay of Plenty (PAUA) is a chartered service that includes networks in the Bay of Plenty and Christchurch, and is part of the New Zealand-wide PAUA organisation. The service provides preschool home-based education for children from birth to five years old. There are two visiting teachers who are qualified early childhood teachers providing educational support to educators and children. The national owner/manager has overall responsibility for the operation of the network. This is the first Education Review report for this service.

The guiding principles of PAUA philosophy are based on the early childhood curriculum. These principles include:

  • a commitment to building strong relationships with parents and whānau
  • developing an educational journey for children in a home environment
  • children exploring their interests in safe natural settings.

Staff employed in these networks share a belief that children benefit from the richness of home-based care and education.

The owner/manager has developed highly effective systems to support service operations and professional practice. A particular feature of the service is the high level of communication and support provided for the visiting teacher role. Visiting teachers work positively together to ensure placements are appropriate and that educators and parents/whānau are comfortable with their children's safety, education and care arrangements.

This ERO review evaluates the quality of education and care received by children, with particular focus on environments, interactions and learning programmes. It also evaluates the service's progress with self review. Aspects of health and safety were sampled in the educators' homes.

Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO will review the service again within three years.

2 The Focus of the Review

All ERO education reviews in early childhood focus on the quality of education. For ERO this includes the quality of:

  • the programme provided for children
  • the learning environment
  • the interactions between children and adults.

The Quality of Education

Background

PAUA is a chartered network established in 2007 in the Bay of Plenty region. It has an attached network based in Christchurch. The service provides preschool home-based education for children from birth to five years old. There are two visiting teachers one in Papamoa/Tauranga and one in Christchurch. The manager has recently appointed a new visiting teacher to the Christchurch network. The national owner/manager has overall responsibility for the operation of both networks. This is the first Education Review for this service.

Areas of good performance

Systems and operations: Effective systems that support service operations and professional practice are well embedded. There are clear and comprehensive procedural guidelines and expectations for visiting teacher practice and for educators. A particular feature of the service is the high level of communication and support provided for visiting teachers and their networks. An appraisal process includes teacher reflection and provides staff with effective professional guidance. Management hold high expectations for the quality of visiting teacher notes as evidence of children’s progress and development. Visiting teachers, educators and parents/whānau benefit from good-quality administrative systems focused on children’s care and education.

Professional leadership: The experienced and knowledgeable owner/manager skilfully blends effective professional leadership with respectful relationships. There is a clear focus onbuilding positive relationships with children, parents and whānau. She works with visiting teachers to meet the needs of educators and children in the network. Regular national hui are held to share and set future strategic direction, build professional capability and to maintain collegial relationships. This collaborative approach to leadership ensures all visiting teachers are well informed and play an integral role in the development of the organisation.

Relationships and interactions: Interactions amongst the visiting teacher, educators and children are positive, respectful and responsive. The visiting teacher supports educators in their roles and models good practice. Through interactions with children she provides feedback to educators about what they are doing. Babies, toddlers and young children benefit from caring interactions that are responsive to their needs and preferences, which stimulate their early language development. Children are settled and demonstrate high levels of trust and confidence in their educators.

Learning environment: Educators’ homes provide children with environments that contribute to their well-being and sense of belonging. They listen and talk with children to hear about their ideas and extend their thinking. Frequent conversations develop children’s oral language and communication skills. Children enjoy a variety of age-appropriate literacy and mathematical resources. They are encouraged to make choices, explore and persist in their play. Educators extend to children’s interests in local outdoor settings that provide them with physical challenge and links to the natural world. This holistic approach to early childhood education encourages children to be confident learners in the environment.

Tauranga Network

Leadership: The visiting teacher works effectively to improve education and care for children and brings a range of strengths that enhance the development of bicultural perspective across the service. In her area, she has established many opportunities for educators to come together to share relevant aspects of PAUA administration. In addition, regular play groups and specific professional development opportunities contribute to educators building their capabilities to care for and promote children’s learning. These initiatives allow educators to network with each other and encourage children to socialise and play together.

Christchurch Network

Management: There is a strong focus on relationships and whānau care. The organisation values and promotes home cultures and languages of children and educators. Provision of extra resources and learning experiences supplement home programmes. Useful systems guide educator practice and support quality assurance systems. Children benefit from positive relationships in home environments.

Areas for development and review

There are some very good examples of educators recording aspects of individual children’s learning in learning journey books. These books provide a daily record of children’s participation in activities and demonstrate the progress they make in learning during their time in the home and the local community. Improved use of this information by teachers and educators should strengthen the quality of learning. Aspects for consideration include: • targeted professional development for visiting teachers and educators • documenting children’s learning by recording how educators notice, recognise and respond • sharing current high-quality practice with educators and parents. The daily documenting of children’s learning will provide parents with evidence about how the day-to-day programme provides opportunities and possibilities to extend children’s learning through play.

3 Management Assurance on Compliance Areas

Overview

Before the review, the management and staff of PAUA Early Childhood - Bay of Plenty completed an ERO Home-Based Care Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they had taken all reasonable steps to meet their legal obligations related to:

  • administration
  • health, safety and welfare
  • personnel management
  • financial and property management.

During the review, ERO checked the following items because they have a potentially high impact on outcomes for children:

  • emotional safety (including behaviour management, prevention of bullying and abuse)
  • physical safety (including behaviour management, sleeping and supervision practices; accidents and medication; hygiene and routines; travel and excursion policies and procedures)
  • staff qualifications and organisation
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

4 Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO will review the service again within three years.

Makere Smith

National Manager Review Services Northern Region (Acting)

21 August 2012

About the Service

Location

Tauranga and Christchurch

Ministry of Education profile number

50127

Licence type

Home-Based Care

Chartered under

Education (Home-based Care) Order 1992

Service roll

28

Gender composition

Girls 15

Boys 13

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

NZ Māori

Other

17

5

7

Review team on site

June 2012

Date of this report

21 August 2012

Most recent ERO report(s)

No previous ERO reports