ERO evaluated how ECE services work in partnership with whānau of Māori children in 374 early childhood services. The sample was representative of the national profile of service types. The data was gathered during each service’s regular education review in Term 4, 2010 and Term 1, 2011.
ERO’s framework for this evaluation
The evaluation focussed on three questions:
- To what extent does the service understand and value the identity, language and culture of Māori children and their whānau, particularly when they transition to the service?
- To what extent have managers and educators built relationships with whānau Māori?
- To what extent does the service work in partnership with whānau Māori?
Approach to this evaluation
Evidence was gathered during scheduled education reviews of early childhood services and included:
- meetings with teachers/educators at the service
- meetings with the manager(s) of the service
- conversations with whānau of Māori children
- observations of interactions between Māori whānau and teachers/educators, and between teachers/educators and Māori children
- observations of the programme in action
- documentation related to the service’s operation and to the learning of individuals and groups of Māori children.
Review officers provided descriptive information for each key question. A framework with best practice indicators  was used to support reviewer’s judgements for each service.