Titirangi Rudolf Steiner Kindergarten 1 - 01/05/2018

1 Evaluation of Titirangi Rudolf Steiner Kindergarten 1

How well placed is Titirangi Rudolf Steiner Kindergarten 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

Titirangi Rudolf Steiner Kindergarten 1, is well established and continues to provide education and care for children from two years six months to six years of age. The centre is affiliated to Titirangi Rudolf Steiner School and shares 100 acres of native forest land.

The kindergarten is a member of the Rudolf Steiner Schools and Early Childhood Centres in New Zealand. It is managed by a College of Teachers and governed by a trust board. Teachers undertake the day to day responsibilities and operations of the centre. The programme provides children with Waldorf Steiner preschool educational values, aligned with Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.

Leaders and teachers have responded positively to ERO's 2014 report.

The Review Findings

Children and their families are warmly welcomed into the centre. Teachers encourage children to make choices about where they wish to play and to make decisions about the resources they need. The four learning environments are inviting and promote quiet self-selected play. Children demonstrate relaxed and friendly relationships with their peers and teachers. They settle quickly and engage in imaginative and creative play. Children with diverse needs are well catered for within the learning programmes.

Steiner philosophy and anthroposophical values are strongly evident in programmes that support children's holistic development. The provision of open-ended resources and opportunities to learn about the rhythms of the day, encourages children's sense of ownership in their play.

Since the 2014 ERO review, a new initiative to make more use of the centre's wider environment has been established. The Ngahere (nature) programme is enabling children to build confidence and resilience through time spent each week in forest exploration, gardening and preparing food in the open air. The addition of beehives close to the orchard, and apiarist training for a staff member, enables the centre to further use the property to promote children's understanding of environmental sustainability.

Teachers are aware of the need to include a bicultural focus in the programme. They have made a good start to incorporating some tikanga and te reo Māori into the programme. Māori legends sometimes provide a focus for story times and children are learning waiata. Older children model and support younger children in tuakana/teina relationships.  Teachers intend to strengthen these aspects as part of the development of the programme.

Leadership within the centre is strong and focused on building teacher capability and sustaining programme quality. Distributed leadership is encouraged and teachers willingly assume leadership in aspects of daily management. One of the centre leaders is strongly involved in international Steiner education networks.

Teachers' practice is sustained by regular internal evaluation, professional development and ongoing appraisal processes that are currently under review. The new strategic plan should provide clear guidance about the intended directions for growth and further development.

Key Next Steps

Agreed next steps to support centre improvement are for centre leaders to:

  • continue to increase the focus on bicultural integration in daily programmes
  • further develop the Ngahere nature programme
  • update systems for the appraisal process.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Titirangi Rudolf Steiner Kindergarten 1 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 Titirangi Rudolf Steiner Kindergarten 1 will be in three years.

Julie Foley
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

1 May 2018 

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

Titirangi, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

20495

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

81 children, over 2 years of age

Service roll

53

Gender composition

Boys      28 
Girls       25

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
European
Japanese
others

  3
40
  6
  2
  2

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49%       50-79%       80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

February 2018

Date of this report

1 May 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

June 2014

Education Review

April 2011

Education Review

October 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.