East Harbour Kindergarten - 04/06/2015

1. Evaluation of East Harbour Kindergarten

How well placed is East Harbour Kindergarten 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.


East Harbour Kindergarten is one of 85 kindergartens and three home-based education and care networks governed and managed by He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua Free Kindergarten Association Incorporated (the association). This is a new kindergarten association created from joining the Rimutaka and Wellington Kindergarten Associations in 2014. The transition to the new association is expected to be a three-year process.

The board and managers provide governance for the organisation. Senior teachers have delegated kindergartens. Their role is to provide regular support and a range of professional learning and development opportunities for teachers.

The January 2012 ERO report for East Harbour Kindergarten identified that assessment and self review needed further development. Areas where the Wellington Kindergarten Association needed to strengthen its support for teachers were also identified at the time. Improvement continues to be needed in some of these areas that the association has plans to address. Aspects of leadership at East Harbour and the alignment of individual kindergarten’s annual plans with the association’s strategic priorities have now been appropriately addressed.

All teachers at East Harbour Kindergarten are qualified. Since the previous ERO review, a new teaching team has been established. The head teacher was appointed in January 2014.

This review was part of a cluster of 12 reviews in the He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua kindergartens.

The Review Findings

The kindergarten’s vision of empowering confident, innovative learners is clearly evident in practice.

Children independently access a wide range of stimulating and purposeful activities. They benefit from many opportunities to make their own choices, follow their own interests and work collaboratively with others. The programme is enhanced by visits to the wider community, which support children’s sense of place and belonging.

Teachers know children well. They are skilled in supporting their growing self reliance. They successfully support children’s emerging mathematics, literacy and scientific interests. They respond effectively to their individual needs and proactively support Pacific children and families.

Clear and consistent leadership is evident. The head teacher has established appropriate priorities for change management and she has provided able leadership.

Practices to support continuing improvement and evaluate progress are strengthening. Self review is developing and teachers’ knowledge of its value in improving outcomes for children continues to grow. The head teacher is working well with her team to develop a shared understanding of effective teaching.

In 2012, the association developed a framework to guide the implementation of its curriculum, Te Manawa. This document outlines criteria for curriculum delivery including expectations for assessment and planning for children’s learning.

The head teacher and staff at East Harbour Kindergarten have taken steps to strengthen this area of their programme. Information from individual and group assessment of children’s learning and from parents’ aspirations is used effectively to plan the curriculum. Teachers recognise that assessment and planning can be further strengthened and have identified appropriate next steps.

The previous ERO report identified that the association needed to improve appraisal processes to better support teaching and leadership capability. These continue to require strengthening. A recently revised appraisal model has the potential to better support the development of teachers and leaders. The head teacher at East Harbour Kindergarten has been pro-active in strengthening appraisal for teachers. Deliberate, intentional support is contributing to enhanced teaching practice.

Children at East Harbour Kindergarten have opportunities to learn about Aotearoa New Zealand’s dual cultural heritage.

Teachers and association leaders acknowledge they need to build their capability to be more responsive to Māori children’s culture, language and identities. This includes strengthening relationships with mana whenua and making greater use of Ka Hikitia- Accelerating Success 2013 - 2017 and Tātaiako: Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori Learners.

The senior teacher provides termly written reports that outline agreed development priorities and progress in relation to the quality of teaching and learning. The association has recently implemented new reports that should more deliberately focus on outcomes for children, teacher and leader performance. ERO's evaluation affirms this development.

Key Next Steps

The senior teacher, head teacher, staff and ERO agree on the following key next steps for East Harbour Kindergarten:

continuing to embed and refine systems and processes to strengthen the quality of teaching and learning. These include assessment of children’s learning, staff appraisal and self review.

The senior management team of He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua should continue to further improve processes for growing and developing the practice of developing teachers, head teachers and senior teachers. These should include:

  • improvements to the quality and monitoring of processes to support individual kindergartens and regular implementation of a robust appraisal system
  • building teachers’ capability to be more responsive to Māori children’s culture, language and identity.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of East Harbour Kindergarten 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 East Harbour Kindergarten will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

4 June 2015

2. Information about the Early Childhood Service



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children aged over 2 years

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 46,

Girls 32

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā





Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

February 2015

Date of this report

4 June 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

These are available at www.ero.govt.nz

Education Review

January 2012


Education Review

April 2008


Education Review

August 2005

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.