Au Pair Link Taranaki 1 - 30/08/2016

1 Evaluation of Au Pair Link Taranaki 1

How well placed is Au Pair Link Taranaki 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.


Au Pair Link Taranaki 1 is operated by the national early childhood organisation, Au Pair Link. Many families live in rural farming communities in Taranaki. There are fourteen licensed networks across New Zealand. The organisation recruits au pairs (educators) from overseas to work with young children in their homes, usually for a maximum term of one year. Through the recruitment process, families choose an educator who they think will meet the needs of their children. Building strong, secure relationships between families and educators is a high priority for the organisation.

The network is licensed for 80 children, including 80 aged up to two years.  The roll at the time of the review was 38, with six identifying as Māori.

The programme manager is a fully qualified and registered teacher.

Au Pair Link has responded positively to the areas for development and review identified in the April 2013 ERO report. This included: further supporting educators to recognise and respond to children's learning; building parents awareness of the expectations for curriculum delivery; and strengthening strategic planning to include expected outcomes for children.

This review was part of a cluster of three in the Au Pair Link organisation.

The Review Findings

Au Pair Link provides high quality education and care. Well aligned, robust systems and processes including quality assurance, monitoring of practice, effective leadership and systematic internal evaluation contribute to improvement, sustainability and positive outcomes for all children.

There is a strong commitment to the philosophy at all levels of the organisation. A focus on high quality care and education in children's own homes and positive learning outcomes is highly evident.

The service values the importance of children learning through play. Children are introduced to a wide range of learning experiences within and outside the home. Well considered, high quality resources and regular excursions further enhance learning opportunities. Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, strongly underpins the service's curriculum.

Educators undertake a comprehensive induction process. This includes support to develop an understanding of Te Whāriki, children's learning dispositions and bicultural practices. 

The programme manager provides comprehensive support for educators in the home and at regular service playgroups. This includes coaching and guidance to effectively model ways to plan children's learning and identify next learning steps. Children's progress is captured and celebrated by educators in photos and stories. Parents' contribution to the programme is highly valued. Assessment practices successfully supports continuity in learning and demonstrates children's progress in a range of contexts.

Many children in the service are infants and toddlers. The placement of educators is well considered and responsive to the needs of individual children and their families. The programme manager works positively alongside educators to provide a curriculum that effectively supports infants and toddlers.

Through the recruitment process, provision for children with additional learning needs is carefully considered. The programme manager effectively works alongside educators, families and external agencies to promotethe participation and engagement of these children in the learning programme.

The strategic plan effectively guides direction for the service. Goals are clearly linked to outcomes for children. Au Pair Link has identified the need to increase the participation of Māori and Pacific families. Since the April 2013 ERO review, this has occurred and continues to be a priority.

Key Next Steps

Management has identified, and ERO's evaluation affirms, the need to continue to strengthen participation of Māori and Pacific families.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Au Pair Link Taranaki 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 Au Pair Link Taranaki 1 will be in four years. 

Joyce Gebbie
Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

30 August 2016 

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 


New Plymouth

Ministry of Education profile number


Institution type

Homebased Network

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

80 children, including up to 80 aged under 2

Service roll


Standard or Quality Funded


Gender composition

Boys 25, Girls 13

Ethnic composition

Other ethnic groups


Number of qualified coordinators in the network


Required ratios of staff educators to children

Under 2


Over 2


Review team on site

July 2016

Date of this report

30 August 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

April 2013

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.