Childhood Concepts (Wellington) Limited - 10/07/2019

1 Evaluation of Childhood Concepts (Wellington) Limited

How well placed is Childhood Concepts (Wellington) Limited to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Childhood Concepts (Wellington) Limited is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

ERO's findings that support this overall judgement are summarised below.

Background

Childhood Concepts (Wellington) Limited is an inner city early learning service catering for children from birth up to five years. The centre was previously known as Co Kids Basin Reserve. In May 2018 it changed name and ownership and became part of the Childhood Concepts group (CCg).

The roll is made up of children from diverse cultural backgrounds and most attend full time. Two separate indoor spaces cater for the younger and older children with a shared area for outdoor activities.

The CCg philosophy emphasises the importance of play-based learning and a family-like environment. It promotes a sense of belonging and strong, respectful and responsive relationships. The centre philosophy is currently under review to revisit the service’s priorities for learning, and provide a shared vision for teaching and learning.

The CCg director provides governance and supports the centre manager who oversees day-to-day operation and leads the teaching team.

The Review Findings

There is a calm, settled tone within the well-organised and appropriately resourced environment. Children demonstrate confidence and a sense of belonging. Free access to a refreshed range of learning materials enables them to follow their interests and explore new ideas. The outdoor playspace offers opportunities for social interaction between different age groups. It provides suitable opportunities for physical challenge, gardening and adventurous activities.

Teachers are responsive to children's wellbeing and learning needs. They work collaboratively to settle children and promote their involvement in learning. Opportunities for developing literacy and numeracy are well integrated into the programme. Exploration and social relationships are promoted.

Children engage in self-chosen activities for sustained periods of time. Routines of the day are designed to promote their independence. Leaders and teachers should continue to develop the child-led, play-based approach and support children’s independence as learners.

There is good provision for infants and toddlers. They benefit from opportunities for language development through rich conversations. Care routines are implemented respectfully and with empathy. Sensory learning experiences provide support for holistic development.

Planning for learning is well considered and appropriately focused on significant aspects of individual children’s learning and development. The process is designed to help teachers notice and identify their interests, strengths, dispositions, and challenges. Children’s progress is regularly reviewed in collaboration with teachers and parents to promote continuity of learning. Strengthening the consistency of teachers' practice to more clearly show how they add value to children’s learning through assessment, is a next step.

Strengthening the implementation of Treaty-based practice, culturally responsive practice and teachers' understanding of te ao Māori is required. This should better support the implementation of the bicultural curriculum and provision for Māori learners.

Groups of priority learners are specifically identified and planned for. Developing specific outcomes linked to these groups' learning plans should better support evaluation of provision and decisions about next development steps.

Teachers regularly talk to parents about their children’s learning. Parents’ aspirations for their children are sought and records of learning are shared. Staff are finding ways to further support parents to become more active partners in planning for their child’s learning.

A recent review of transitions into and through the centre has resulted in improved practices and responsiveness to children and their families. Teachers should continue to seek ways to share information with new entrant teachers to support continuity of children’s learning as they transition to school.

Internal evaluation is being well led by the centre manager who is working to increase teacher participation and capability. Recent strategic reviews inform decision making and have resulted in improved practices and outcomes for children.

The director and manager work collaboratively to support operation and improvement. Strategic planning, developed in collaboration with the CCg, is guiding centre direction and development.

Management should ensure that guidelines are current and systems for reporting to the director are strengthened to provide assurance of quality.

Building a cohesive teaching team and promoting teachers' leadership have been identified as areas for development. The implementation of a newly introduced appraisal process has been well supported with professional learning and development. It provides opportunities to build teachers' practice and aligns with Teaching Council requirements. CCg should provide clearer guidelines for the annual process and also develop procedures for the induction and mentoring of provisionally certificated teachers.

Key Next Steps

Leaders should:

  • continue to support the development of the child-led, play-based approach and children’s independence as learners

  • further develop teachers' assessment, planning and evaluation practice, including the promotion of parents as active partners in children's learning

  • strengthen the implementation of Treaty-based, culturally responsive practice and understanding of te ao Māori

  • ensure operational guidelines are current, and formalise reporting about priorities and health and safety requirements.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Childhood Concepts (Wellington) Limited 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.

To improve practice management should ensure:

  • the Health and Safety at Work Act (2015) is fully understood and implemented, including the development of a more site-specific hazard management system

  • clear procedures are documented for the appraisal process, and the induction and mentoring of provisionally certificated teachers.

Lesley Patterson
Director Review and Improvement Services Southern
Southern Region

10 July 2019

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

60088

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

46 children, including up to 25 aged under 2

Service roll

39

Gender composition

Boys 21, Girls 18

Ethnic composition

Māori
NZ European/Pākehā
Indian
Other ethnic groups

6
13
7
13

Percentage of qualified teachers

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

May 2019

Date of this report

10 July 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

March 2016

Education Review

November 2012

Education Review

May 2009

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

The overall judgement that ERO makes will depend on how well the service promotes positive learning outcomes for children. The categories are:

  • Very well placed

  • Well placed

  • Requires further development

  • Not well placed

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.