Creators Christian Childcare Centre - 04/05/2015

1 Evaluation of Creators Christian Childcare Centre

How well placed is Creators Christian Childcare 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.


Creators Christian Childcare Centre provides full-day education and care for children from birth to school age. The centre operates three age-based rooms for children up to and over the age of two years. Creators is governed by a non-profit charitable community trust. It is one of two centres and a home-based service, in the Waikato region governed and managed by this trust.

The centre is licensed for 62 children, including 25 up to the age of two years. At the time of this review the roll was 93, including 10 children of Māori descent. Ongoing developments since the previous 2012 ERO review have been the implementation of a new management structure, addition of a separate nursery and toddler area, and significant improvements to the indoor and outdoor environments. Teachers have continued to participate in relevant and useful professional development to enrich learning opportunities for children.

The centre has a high number of qualified teachers, and operates adult to child ratios that exceed minimum requirements. The trust, management and staff have an established vision and philosophy that aims to promote strong, loving relationships as the foundation for children’s learning. This philosophy is underpinned by a Christian world view, values and beliefs. The centres programme is inspired by the principles of Reggio Emilia approaches to teaching and learning.

The centre has a positive reporting history and continues to provide very high quality education and care for children and their families.

The Review Findings

Management and teachers provide high quality and responsive education and care. They view children as capable learners and use a wide range of highly effective teaching strategies to promote children’s learning.

Children and their families are welcomed into a loving, peaceful home-like environment. Babies, children and their families have established close, secure and trusting relationships with management, teachers and their peers. Children are sensitively supported to develop a sense of belonging and their emotional and spiritual wellbeing needs are well met.

Young babies enjoy personalised care from primary care teachers who work in close partnership with family/whānau. Teachers carefully manage children’s transitions between the three age-group areas. They are responsive to individual children’s readiness to move. A designated teacher works closely with the over-two children, promoting their well-being and ensuring that family aspirations are reflected in children’s care and education.

The centre’s curriculum strongly reflects the principles of Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, and the Reggio Emilo approach to teaching and learning. Particular strengths of the programme include:

  • a focus on dispositional learning that promotes life-long learning behaviours, knowledge and skills that can be transferred into future learning contexts
  • a rich and well-designed environment that entices children to actively investigate, research and work on interest based projects overtime
  • a well-developed, comprehensive assessment, planning and evaluation system that is effectively used by teachers to develop individual learning experiences for children
  • partnerships with family/whānau that have resulted in high levels of engagement in their children’s learning
  • many opportunities for children to develop their social confidence, be creative, use their imagination and be involved in dramatic play.

Children experience extensive opportunities to be engaged in sustained, enjoyable and complex play and learning.

Management and teachers have successfully established a collaborative, reflective centre culture that is focused on the best possible outcomes for children, families and the community. They work well together, and their strengths and passions are embedded in their teaching practice. Management and teachers are committed to inclusive practices and are strong advocates for children and families.

Māori children’s sense of culture and identity is supported by the increasing use of te reo Māori and the inclusion of waiata and karakia. Further development and inclusion of a Māori dimension into the programme would further enrich experiences for children and teaching practice.

Highly effective and professional leadership is being provided by trust members and team leaders. They have designed and implemented very effective and well developed self-review processes that focus on continued improvement to the quality of the environment, management systems and teaching practice. A shared leadership model is developing and teachers have opportunities to extend their leadership skills in a variety of areas. Parents and children also act as leaders and the practice of tuakana-teina and ako are very evident in the centre.

Key Next Steps

ERO supports the centre’s future plans to continue to review and develop management, reporting and quality assurance systems

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Creators Christian Childcare 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 Creators Christian Childcare Centre will be in four years.

Dale Bailey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

4 May 2015

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


Forest Lake, Hamilton

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

62 children, including up to 25 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 47

Boys 46

Ethnic composition









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

February 2015

Date of this report

4 May 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

March 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.