Early Learning @ Home - 11/04/2018

1 Evaluation of Early Learning @ Home

How well placed is Early Learning @ Home 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.


Early Learning @ Home is an all-day home based service licensed in October 2016. The service is licensed for up to 40 children including up to 40 under two years of age. It is privately owned and operated. Early Learning @ Home's organisational structure includes a board of directors and a management committee that includes the co-ordinator. It has one network currently with 13 educators. The service philosophy promotes children's learning through play, and enhancing their diverse cultures through song and dance. The service reflects core Niuean values including fakaalofa, (love), fakalilifu (respect) aga fakamotu (culture) and magafaoa (family).

Since gaining its licence, the service has faced challenges. It has had a change in co-ordinators, high turnover of educators and has shifted premises into an interim location. At the time of this evaluation, the managers were re-establishing systems and processes for planning and operations, employment, health and safety and delivery of care and learning for children. This is Early Learning @ Home's first ERO review.

The Review Findings

Documentation and interviews undertaken as part of this review process indicate that children enjoy warm and positive relationships with educators. Children have experiences to develop pride in their identity and culture. However, insufficient support is provided for educators to deliver programmes of learning for children in their care. Furthermore, ERO is concerned about the weak systems and processes that exist. Managers must improve systems and processes for:

  • personnel recruitment, appointment, induction and ongoing support for educators to provide care and education for children.
  • health and safety checks including, first aid certificates, seeking parental approval prior to excursions, development of supervision plans and accurate monitoring to ensure that homes and facilities continue to be safe for educators and children
  • providing professional support for the co-ordinator to continue to develop knowledge, skills and practices and to organise and deliver regular and frequent workshops about programme planning, assessment and evaluation
  • ensuring the co-ordinator provides sufficient time on home visits to support the development and learning of each child
  • ensuring that regular play groups take place for children to develop social skills and experience a wide curriculum
  • providing sufficient resources and materials to facilitate the delivery of programmes for children
  • developing management plans to show alignment between goals and operational systems and to assist the implementation of a quality service
  • improving the service's philosophy to include reference to Te Tiriti o Waitangi
  • evaluations that are effective in bringing about positive changes and improved outcomes for learners.

ERO is not assured that records for the monitoring of children's sleep, nappy changes and other routines are accurately recorded or effectively monitored. The gaps noted are likely to have negative impact on outcomes for children.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Early Learning @ Home completed an ERO Home-based Education and Care 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.

Actions for compliance

ERO found significant areas of non-compliance in the service related to:

  • a curriculum designed to enhance children's learning and development

  • suitable human resource management practices

  • the accuracy and monitoring of children's personal routines

  • a supervision plan in each educator's home

  • educators' understanding of children's learning and development

  • educators holding a current first aid qualification in accordance with requirements

  • internal evaluation and planning to guide the service's operation.

Licensing criteria for Home-based Education and Care Services 2008, C1, C2, C3, C4, C9, C10, PF4, PF10, HS3, HS8, HS14 (ii), HS22, HS34, GMA6.

Recommendation to Ministry of Education

ERO recommends that the Ministry reassess the licence of Early Learning @ Home. ERO will not undertake a further education review of this service until the Ministry of Education is satisfied that the service meets licensing requirements.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Early Learning @ Home will be in consultation with the Ministry of Education.

Julie Foley

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

11 April 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 Home-based Education and Care Service


Otahuhu, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


Institution type

Homebased Network

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, including up to 40 aged under 2

Service roll


Standard or Quality Funded


Gender composition

Boys 24 Girls 15

Ethnic composition

Middle Eastern


Number of qualified coordinators in the network


Required ratios of educators to children

Under 2


Over 2


Review team on site

February 2018

Date of this report

11 April 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

No previous ERO reports

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 the draft methodology for ERO reviews in Home-based Education and Care 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.