Childhood Concepts Early Learning Centre Ltd - 17/05/2018

1 Evaluation of Childhood Concepts Early Learning Centre Ltd

How well placed is Childhood Concepts Early Learning Centre Ltd 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

Childhood Concepts Early Learning Centre, is one of two privately owned and managed services in the Hutt Valley, Wellington. The service is licensed to provide all day education and care for 36 children. This includes 12 children aged up to two years.

The philosophy acknowledges each child as an individual and prioritises whānau involvement through whanaungatanga and whenua.

The owner operator has an early childhood teaching qualification and a practising certificate. She is assisted by another professional leader and together they oversee the day-to-day operation and provide professional leadership to the teaching teams in both the Lower Hutt and Upper Hutt centres. These managers and centre managers from each service, work collaboratively to provide professional leadership and support to teachers and to meet the service's strategic vision. An office manager is employed to attend to administrative tasks.

Centre managers have delegated responsibility for curriculum implementation in each service. Teachers are allocated to two distinct learning spaces that cater for particular age groups of children.

The service responded positively to the July 2015 ERO report. Internal evaluation and development have taken place, in relation to curriculum responsiveness to Māori and Pacific learners' cultures, languages and identities and the service's strategic direction and philosophy.

This review was one of two in the Childhood Concepts Early Learning Centres Ltd.

The Review Findings

Children's learning and wellbeing are supported through relationship-based teaching and a very well-considered culturally responsive curriculum. Teachers know children well and as a result of this are attuned to their preferences, interests and needs. This is particularly notable for the youngest children attending.

The principles, strands and goals of Te Whāriki, the service philosophy and core values of, Manaakitanga, Ako Ako, Whanaungatanga, Awhina and play underpin the service's curriculum aspirations and priorities. Teachers, families and whānau have shared expectations of what they want children to experience and achieve during their time at the service.

The leadership team has efficiently built teachers' capability and led effective internal evaluation of aspects of the curriculum since the previous ERO review. It has contributed to improved outcomes for learners. Teaching staff have built knowledge of culturally responsive practice and the curriculum responds well to and affirms the cultures, languages and identities of all the children attending. Children and families demonstrate a strong sense of community and belonging.

Learning activities in the centre and wider community are purposefully planned in response to children's interests and strengths. Children's curiosity for learning is provoked and their knowledge and skills extended. Plentiful opportunities occur for children to lead their own learning, be physically active, join in planned experiences and activities, or play alongside their peers in the functional learning environment. Wellconsidered literacy, mathematics, science activities and excursions in the wider community are core components of the curriculum.

Te ao and te reo Māori are meaningfully woven through learning experiences and centre rituals, as are those pertaining to children's Pacific heritage. It is an integral part of Māori and Pacific children's early education. Teachers continue to build their knowledge of culturally responsive practices and adapt their teaching in light of this.

Children with additional needs are very well catered for. Teachers access support from external agencies when necessary. Inclusive practice and a positive tone promote children's holistic development.

Management, leadership and the service administrator provide valuable support to centre leaders and teachers. The high levels of involvement of the centre's community and a sense of collective responsibility for children, provides a very positive platform for learning.

Processes for building teachers' capability encourage collaborative inquiry about best practice and are evidence based. They are highly reflective practitioners who work collectively to continually improve outcomes for children and their families and whānau.

The dual purpose of self review for accountability and improvement is well understood and informs ongoing decision-making. The centre's internal evaluation guides development. Priorities align to the service' strategic vision, annual goals and clearly focus on effective and consistent teaching practice and learning outcomes for children.

Key Next Steps

Leaders should continue to build all teachers capability to use internal evaluation effectively to sustain and continually improve teaching and learning for all children.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Childhood Concepts Early Learning Centre Ltd 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.

During the evaluation ERO identified some procedures related to personnel management, excursions and health and safety that needed improvement to ensure these were fit for purpose and met requirements. Since the onsite phase of the review these matters have been addressed.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Childhood Concepts Early Learning Centre Ltd will be in three years.

Patricia Davey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central (Acting)

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

17 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

Lower Hutt

Ministry of Education profile number

60000

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

36 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll

35

Gender composition

Boys 19, Girls 16

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Chinese
Indian
Pacific
Other ethnic groups

9
13
7
3
2
1

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

17 May 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

July 2015

Supplementary Review

July 2013

Education Review

June 2012

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.