Caterpillars to Butterflys Childcare - 19/06/2013

1 Background

Introduction

A Supplementary Review is undertaken at the discretion of a National Manager, Review Services in the Education Review Office (ERO).

A supplementary review evaluates the extent and effectiveness of actions a centre has taken towards addressing issues specified in a previous education review and/or any additional areas identified since that review.

Terms of Reference

This supplementary review is based on an evaluation of the performance of the Caterpillars to Butterfly's Childcare governing body and management in relation to areas identified in the April 2012 ERO report or issues identified since that review. The terms of reference for this review are to investigate:

  • systems for building staff capability, including appraisal processes and systems for developing reflective teacher practice, especially for provisionally registered teachers
  • children’s learning records, including the consistency of staff assessment practices and processes for showing children’s progress over time and next learning steps
  • the learning environment, including programme resourcing and the inclusion of te reo Māori, tikanga and New Zealand’s bicultural heritage in the environment and centre programmes
  • centre responses to compliance actions in the 2012 report, particularly those linked to the development of a positive guidance approach for managing children’s behaviour.

2 Evaluation Findings

Background

Caterpillars to Butterfly’s Childcare is located in Hillcrest on Auckland’s North Shore. The centre is licensed to provide all day education and care for 35 children aged from three months to school age. The centre opened in 2008 and has had four ERO reviews to date.

The 2012 ERO report identified areas needing improvement, both in centre operations and in educational outcomes for children. During the past 12 months the centre has taken positive action to address some of the issues raised. A new teaching director has been appointed. Four staff are registered teachers and staff are now working more productively as a team.

As reported in previous ERO reviews, teachers continue to be caring and supportive of children. They welcome families warmly into the centre.

Areas of progress

The appointment of the new teaching director, who has recent experience in leading other early childhood services, has improved centre operations. Staff are more settled and work collaboratively together, using reflective practices to improve outcomes for children. Teacher capability is being strengthened through the centre’s appraisal system. This system should now be linked to more strongly to the current professional teaching criteria.

Assessment and planning records for children indicate that some teachers are noticing, recognising and responding to children’s individual strengths and interests. The infants and toddlers’ area has developed more strongly in this respect, showing evidence of children’s progress over time. Teachers working with older children evaluate their teaching practice, but relate this more to group activities than to outcomes for individual children.

Children are enjoying opportunities to make better choices in their play. Their exploration and play is enhanced by access to better quality resourcing, including improved provisions at the carpentry table and improved digital equipment. Learning areas for the infants and toddlers’ group and for the older children’s group have more clearly defined areas for play.

Self review continues to improve and is contributing to the centre’s growing effectiveness. Spontaneous and informal review is regularly undertaken and has been the source of much improvement to the children’s learning environment.

Te reo and tikanga Māori are more visible in the learning programme and centre routines.

The centre has sustained its focus on good quality care for children. Children show a sense of well being and benefit from a calm centre tone. A behaviour policy, with accompanying robust procedures, has been developed with the input of external advisers and is promoting positive guidance for children. Parents have also been consulted in relation to this policy and there is evidence of more regular communication between the centre and its families.

Areas for further improvement

To further improve centre practices, centre leaders should establish formal strategic and annual planning approaches to guide operations and systems. Professional learning and appraisal for teachers should be aligned to strategic and annual planning. Work in these areas would promote more systematic and formal self-review processes. It would enable centre leaders and staff to better evaluate the success of centre goals and guide future cycles of planning.

Programme planning is also in need of further improvement. Centre leaders agree that upcoming professional development should focus on developing more effective programme planning that is responsive to children’s interests. Evidence of learning progress should be included in children’s assessment records. Staff should regularly observe children and share information about each child’s development as a learner. Parents should be involved in, and informed about, their children’s next learning steps.

3 Future Action

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interest of the children. Therefore ERO will review the service again as part of the regular review cycle.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services Northern Region

19 June 2013

Information about the Service

Location

Hillcrest, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

20225

Licence type

All Day Education and Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Centres) Regulations 1998

Number licensed for

35 children, including up to 15 aged under 2

Service roll

23

Gender composition

Boys 14

Girls 9

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā

Māori

Chinese

African

Niue

Other European

9

5

4

1

1

3

Percentage of qualified teachers

50-79%

Review team on site

April 2013

Date of this report

19 June 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)

Supplementary Review

Supplementary Review

Education Review

April 2012

November 2010

September 2009