Beachcomber Kindergarten - 15/12/2014

1 Evaluation of Beachcomber Kindergarten

How well placed is Beachcomber Kindergarten 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.


Beachcomber Kindergarten in Howick, Auckland, is an established privately owned service. It provides high quality care and education for up to 30 children over two years of age. The service provides an attractive home-like and well maintained learning environment. The children attending the service come from a range of cultural backgrounds.

The centre offers sessional attendance or all day programmes that match school hours and school terms. All teachers are fully registered and are capably led by a centre manager and head teacher. The teaching team is stable and settled. There is a high teacher-to-child ratio.

The centre’s philosophy promotes participation and learning through opportunities for both independent and collaborative play. The focus is on offering an accessible well resourced learning environment that invites children to engage in exploration and to have fun in their learning. Partnerships with families are valued.

Beachcomber Kindergarten has a history of positive ERO reporting. Areas for improvement in the ERO 2011 report have been a centre focus and continue to be strengthened.

The Review Findings

Children are settled, engaged and relaxed in the centre environment. They have good access to learning resources that are well presented and organised. Children are well supported to become socially competent. They are developing skills to build relationships with teachers and friendships with other children. There are opportunities for them to develop leadership and negotiation skills.

Teachers celebrate children’s successes and achievements. Teachers' high quality interactions extend and challenge children’s thinking. Children's transitions into the centre are sensitively supported so that children develop a sense of wellbeing and belonging. Inclusive practice promotes positive outcomes for all children. The teaching team works skilfully to establish warm, reciprocal relationships with children and their parents. This is providing a good foundation for continuing to building effective partnerships with parents that support children’s learning.

Teachers provide many opportunities for children to engage in meaningful learning experiences about literacy, natural science and mathematics. They have a focus on children developing as competent communicators. Many children are learning to speak English.

Mathematics learning is well supported in this centre. Teachers know the importance of children developing a practical understanding of mathematical concepts. This is part of preparing them for lifelong competency and interest in numeracy and maths. Children are learning to apply math concepts relevantly in imaginative play scenarios. Teachers use inquiry learning strategies to stimulate children’s interest and thinking. Records show how teachers extend children’s knowledge in specific projects.

Teachers also have a strong commitment to extending bicultural knowledge and practice in the centre. Te reo Māori and knowledge of local histories, legends and values are seamlessly integrated into learning programmes. Children and teachers are becoming confident in their understanding of the dual cultural heritage of Aotearoa. Teachers could now consider how they could make aspects of children’s individual cultural backgrounds more evident in the environment.

Effective management systems, policies and procedures guide practices and help to provide positive outcomes for all children. The strategic plan focuses on building the capacity of teachers to teach well. There are good links between the centre’s philosophy, strategic direction and the implementation of annual plans.

A change in the centre’s management structure has provided better opportunities for teachers to develop leadership roles. It is also helping them to increase their expertise in specific areas. Teachers’ professional knowledge and capability to enrich children’s learning is being strengthened. This is being achieved through professional development, by thoughtfully reflecting on practices, and through the introduction of a more robust appraisal system. Teachers work collaboratively to embed the centre’s philosophy in their practice. Together they are keeping up to date with current approaches to teaching and learning.

Key Next Steps

Centre managers and teachers agree to strengthen centre practices. They could now:

  • reflect on their role in supporting children to experience success as learners through their own cultural contexts
  • review strategic and annual planning processes to ensure that they support the achievement of centre goals.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Beachcomber Kindergarten 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 Beachcomber Kindergarten will be in three years.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

15 December 2014

2 Information about the Early Childhood Service


Howick, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 25

Girls 21

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā





Latin American








Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

November 2014

Date of this report

15 December 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

August 2011


Education Review

August 2008


Education Review

August 2005

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.