Carterton Playcentre - 15/12/2014

1. Evaluation of Carterton Playcentre

How well placed is Carterton Playcentre 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.


Carterton Playcentre is one of three parent-led early childhood centres administered by the Wairarapa Playcentre Association, (the association), which oversees governance operations. An executive committee provides the adult education programme, guidance and support for members. A centre support person is employed by the executive to visit playcentres and provide professional advice and feedback to members to strengthen their practice and promote improvement.

Responsibility for day-to-day operations is undertaken by centre-elected office holders. Parents share the duties associated with implementing the programme. The playcentre operates mixed-age sessions three mornings per week.

Compliance concerns identified in the March 2013 ERO report have been addressed. The New Zealand Playcentre Federation (NZPF) has provided centre members with professional learning and development (PLD) in self review, planning, assessment and evaluation, and positive guidance. This training has been helpful in the development of programmes for children.

This review was part of a cluster of three reviews within the Wairarapa Playcentre Association.

The Review Findings

The curriculum is strongly child-led with adults taking supporting roles. The environment is welcoming, inclusive and promotes children's exploration and sense of adventure. Their creativity and imagination is intentionally nurtured. Routines aid children’s independence and foster a sense of belonging. Adults and children learn together and develop friendships with others.

The individual needs of learners are well supported. All children are seen as confident and competent and they are encouraged to make choices about their learning. There is regular review of the provision of spaces and materials to assist exploration. Practices provide well for children with identified special needs.

Useful processes for assessment have been established. Programme planning is informed by children’s interests, parents’ ideas and session evaluations. Leaders are committed to ongoing assistance for the development of members’ professional knowledge. Assessment of children’s learning is a current focus.

Māori and Pacific children have their cultures recognised in meaningful ways. Te ao Māori is reflected through waiata, signage and the use of basic te reo Māori. Further developing capability to provide programmes that are responsive to the cultural identity of families should enhance outcomes for children.

Leadership is collaborative and inclusive. A high level of trust is evident among members. Adults are aware of their roles and responsibilities. The need to grow and replace leaders to support future sustainability of the centre is recognised and acted upon.

Self review is developing and results in improvement and change. Good examples of review are shared with members in order to further develop their understanding. Strategic planning clearly identifies the service’s priorities. Agreed next steps are identified and progress is monitored against expected outcomes.

Leaders acknowledge that while they have made substantial progress since the previous ERO review, there is a need to continue to refine and embed developments.

Key Next Steps

Members have identified that they should continue to:

  • build the quality and consistency of assessment practices
  • develop self review
  • enhance culturally responsive practice.

Since the previous review the association has provided new personnel to support centres. The association should:

  • assist members to address the key next steps they have identified
  • engage with iwi and encourage a wider involvement of Maori
  • seek support to further develop cultural competencies
  • ensure the team leader's development needs are suitably identified and addressed through a robust appraisal process.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Carterton Playcentre 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 Carterton Playcentre will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services Central Region

15 December 2014

2. Information about the Early Childhood Service



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type


Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

25 children, including 15 aged up to 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 18,

Girls 17

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā





Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements


Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

October 2014

Date of this report

15 December 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

These are available at

Education Review

March 2013


Education Review

June 2009


Education Review

April 2006

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.