Box Hill Kids - 15/05/2018

1 Evaluation of Box Hill Kids

How well placed is Box Hill Kids 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

Box Hill Kids is a community-based, non-profit early childhood service. Based on Christian values, it is governed by a board, comprised of the Onslow Anglican Parish, parents and staff representatives. Education and care is provided for 30 children including 12 up to the age of two years, within a mixed-age group setting. Of the children enrolled, four identify as Māori.

Since the April 2016 ERO report, there has been significant restructure of staff. Two teachers are currently on long term leave. A new board has recently been elected. The day-to-day running of the centre is the responsibility of the centre manager.

The previous ERO review identified areas that required further development that included: assessment, planning and evaluation; responsive teaching; and development of the bicultural programme. The review also identified that stronger leadership in internal evaluation and curriculum design and implementation was needed to improve outcomes for children. Although some progress is evident, much work continues to be needed in relation to improving curriculum design and teaching practices.

The Review Findings

Children are yet to experience a curriculum that suitably responds to their abilities, interests, and needs.

Stronger leadership in curriculum design and teachers' implementation of good practice, are key improvement priorities. Leaders need to strengthen their understanding of best practice linked to teaching and learning in line with the requirements of Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.

Planned group times are not responsive to the individual abilities of children. Teachers need to focus on the suitability of these group times and the impact they have on children's learning, particularly for infants and toddlers. Further improvement to the programme to empower children as learners is needed.

The progress previously made in assessment and planning practice has not been sustained. The quality of children's narrative learning stories is variable. The group, project-based model of planning does not respond to children's interests, skills and dispositions for learning. Developing a suitable approach to planning and assessment is a priority and includes establishing clearer guidelines to support teachers' practice and how they intentionally support children's learning.

Professional learning and development has supported better provision of the bicultural curriculum. Children confidently participate in daily rituals that incorporate tikanga Māori. Leaders and teachers need to continue to deepen their knowledge and understanding of te ao Māori to strengthen partnerships with whānau Māori and learning outcomes for Māori children.

The Christian character is reflected through the programme offered. Children's cultures are celebrated. A focused approach to knowing the culture and language of children has resulted in the provision of activities and resources that promotes their sense of identity. Continuing to strengthen culturally responsive practices and making this more visible in the environment is a next step to further support Pacific children's success.

Transition to school processes require further improvement to better reflect current early learning research and best practice.

A system of ongoing review has resulted in some positive changes. This should contribute to the centre's readiness to evaluate the quality of the programme and support any further decision making.

A regular system of appraisal is now implemented. The centre manager has identified that this process requires further strengthening. ERO confirms this direction to better promote consistency of practice across the teaching team.

The newly elected committee and parents express their support and contribute to the upkeep of this community based service.

Key priorities for improvement are:

  • curriculum responsiveness to better meet all children's strengths, abilities, interests and needs

  • stronger leadership in curriculum design and teachers' implementation of good practice

  • the quality and consistency of assessment and planning for children's learning

  • understanding of te ao Māori and meaningful use of te reo Māori

  • culturally responsive teaching practices that support success for Māori and Pacific children

  • understanding and use of evaluation to measure the impact of teaching practice on children's learning outcomes

  • having clear systems and processes in place to assist leaders and trustees to understand and meet all the legislative requirements.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Box Hill Kids 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.

Actions for compliance

ERO found significant areas of non-compliance in the service related to:

  • premises and facilities
  • curriculum
  • governance and management
  • health and safety.

To meet requirements the service must ensure that:

  • teachers and leaders plan, implement and evaluate a curriculum that is informed by relevant theories and best practice which responds to children's learning interests, strengths, and capabilities of enrolled children

the outdoor activity space can be easily and safely accessed by children

  • when children leave the premises on an outing or an excursion, assessment and management of risks is undertaken specific to the location and that parents/caregivers have given prior written approval for the child's participation, and the proposed ratio for special excursions is shared

  • records of medication (prescription and non-prescription) that are given show evidence of parental acknowledgement. [Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008 Regulation 43a (i), (iii); Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood and Care Centres 2008, PF13, HS17, HS28]

In order to improve practice:

leaders and teachers should give consideration to the current suitability of facilities for children's toileting and nappy changing to ensure they promote children's dignity and right to privacy.

Recommendation to Ministry of Education

ERO recommends that the Ministry reassess the licence of Box Hill Kids. ERO will not undertake a further education review of this service until the Ministry of Education is satisfied that the service meets licensing requirements.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Box Hill Kids will be in consultation with the Ministry of Education.

Patricia Davey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

15 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

Wellington

Ministry of Education profile number

50058

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll

48

Gender composition

Girls 24, Boys 24

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Other ethnic groups

4
30
14

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:4

Better than minimum requirements

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

March 2018

Date of this report

15 May 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

April 2016

Education Review

February 2013

Education Review

January 2010

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.