Avonside Early Childhood Centre - 14/11/2019

1 Evaluation of Avonside Early Childhood Centre

How well placed is Avonside Early Childhood Centre to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Avonside Early Childhood Centre is very well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

ERO's findings that support this overall judgement are summarised below.


Avonside Early Childhood Centre is a non-profit community centre located in the Eastern suburbs of Christchurch. It provides care and education for children aged two-to-six years. The centre is licensed for 30 children.

The centre is governed by a board of trustees. The management team is made up of a centre manager/senior teacher, a finance manager and the board chair. There is a stable, experienced teaching staff.

The centre's philosophy is based on Te Whāriki, the New Zealand Early Childhood Curriculum and the Incredible Years programme. The philosophy is underpinned by the centre values of kindness, responsive and intentional teaching, relationships and respect, open communication and honesty, and a collaborative and co-operative team.

The recommendations in the 2016 ERO have all been addressed.

The centre is a member of the Tamai Kāhui Ako|Community of Learning.

The Review Findings

Avonside Early Childhood Centre is very effectively enabling positive outcomes for children. Warm, respectful relationships between children, teachers and families are highly evident. A well-considered philosophy, vision and values clearly influence the programme and contribute to equitable outcomes for children. Leadership has established a culture in which children are first and foremost valued, celebrated and affirmed for who they are and what they bring to their learning. Leaders and teachers advocate for children and provide a quality and inclusive early childhood education.

Effective and collaborative leadership sets a clear direction for teachers. This ensures a consistent approach to quality teaching interactions. Leaders use internal evaluation well to make improvements to programmes and practices. Ongoing and focussed professional development has helped teachers better plan, record and assess children's learning.

A rich, responsive curriculum closely aligned with Te Whāriki provides an inclusive, stimulating learning environment. Teachers plan using authentic contexts for learning and use children's interests to engage them in the programme, they use a range of approaches for different assessment purposes to understand and support children's learning and development.

Parents' and whānau aspirations for their children are valued and considered in assessment and planning, processes and programmes. Leaders and teachers work in partnership with parents of children with diverse learning needs to improve and enhance their learning.

Leaders and teachers take responsibility for learning about the languages, cultures and identities of all children attending. Children have opportunities to use te reo and tikanga Māori in the daily programme. Transitions into and beyond the centre are well managed. The centre provides a range of well-considered and thoughtfully resourced indoor and outdoor environments that meet the needs of children.

Key Next Steps

ERO recommends, and the centre leaders agree to:

  • develop a greater alignment between the strategic and annual plans

  • ensure ongoing and evaluative monitoring of progress towards identified strategic goals.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Avonside Early Childhood Centre 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.

Dr Lesley Patterson

Director Review and Improvement Services Southern

Southern Region

14 November 2019

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



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, two years old and over

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 18

Boys 14

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā


Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Ratio of staff to children

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

October 2019

Date of this report

14 November 2019

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review

October 2016

Education Review

July 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 ERO’s Approach to Review in Early Childhood Services.

ERO’s Overall Judgement

The overall judgement that ERO makes will depend on how well the service promotes positive learning outcomes for children. The categories are:

  • Very well placed

  • Well placed

  • Requires further development

  • Not well placed

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.