Carrigane Infant Centre - 28/02/2018

1 Evaluation of Carrigane Infant Centre

How well placed is Carrigane Infant Centre 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.


Carrigane Infant Centre is licensed to provide education and care for 23 infants and toddlers, including 20 aged up to two years. In consultation with families, children then transition to the adjacent Carrigane Childcare Centre.

Carrigane has been operating for over 50 years and owned by a family trust that oversees the services as a governing board. A member of the family serves as manager of both centres. She and two head teachers make up the professional leadership team.

Teaching teams are long serving and work closely together. Their shared teaching philosophy places a strong emphasis on relationships and Te Tiriti o Waitangi based practices. Families from a range of cultural backgrounds attend the service.

The service has been responsive to the areas for development identified in the July 2014 ERO report.

The Review Findings

Infants and toddlers benefit from positive relationships with teachers who are attentive to their communication and cues. Their oral language development is very well supported. Staff warmly engage in play with individuals and groups and respectfully offer them meaningful choices. Care routines are flexible to children's preferences and needs. An emphasis on nature exploration and sensory play is evident.

Teachers purposefully build learning partnerships with parents, supporting a sense of belonging and wellbeing for children and their families. Staff respond effectively to children with diverse learning needs. Teachers liaise with whānau and external agencies to share useful information that supports children's learning and wellbeing.

Professional learning has supported teachers to develop a curriculum that meaningfully reflects the local community. Children benefit from regular opportunities to see, hear and experience aspects of te ao Māori. Teachers demonstrate commitment to continually growing their bicultural competence. Resources, rituals and celebrations support this valuable learning. The service acknowledges that their next step is to implement specific strategies for promoting educational success of Māori learners. ERO's evaluation confirms this.

Assessment is well understood and effectively informs the programme. Portfolios are rich records of children's learning and engagement. The centre has developed a very useful framework to guide planning and assessment. Teachers gather a wide range of information to inform the planning cycle, including regular consultation with parents. Teachers should further enhance assessment documentation by showing clearly how they have drawn on their strong knowledge of children, as well as parents’ aspirations and cultural information, to purposefully challenge children and extend their progress. This should also assist teachers to know the impact of their teaching on improving learner outcomes.

Transitions processes are very well considered and sensitive to children’s needs for familiarity and belonging. A range of useful practices promotes the confidence of parents and children during these times. Transitions are further supported through regular opportunities for children to interact with their older peers at the neighbouring Carrigane Childcare Centre.

Teachers collaborate on meaningful internal evaluations of their practice. They consult with relevant research and members of the learning community to inform changes and ongoing improvements. Outcomes for children and whānau are prioritised in decision making. Leaders agree that internal evaluation should be further refined, by gathering data that is directly linked to measurable indicators. This would better define the intent and success of the evaluation.

Appraisal, mentoring and certification processes are well aligned with Education Council requirements. Some teachers demonstrate strong inquiry practice focused on priority learners. Management acknowledge that it is timely to review the implementation of the performance management process to ensure consistency and meaningful critical feedback, for all teachers.

A cohesive leadership team supports a positive staff culture. They are very well supported by management to engage in a wide range of professional learning and leadership opportunities. Staff demonstrate a high level of commitment to continuous improvement, focused on quality outcomes for children and families.

Key Next Steps

Centre leaders and ERO agree that priority should be given to:

  • promoting educational success for Māori learners

  • enhancing assessment documentation

  • further development of internal evaluation

  • strengthening the appraisal process.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Carrigane Infant 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.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Carrigane Infant Centre will be in three years.

Alan Wynyard

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central (Acting)

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

28 February 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



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

23 children, including up to 20 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 14, Boys 11

Ethnic composition

Other ethnic groups


Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

January 2018

Date of this report

28 February 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

July 2014

Education Review

May 2011

Education Review

June 2007

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.