Giggles Learning Centre - Kiripaka - 11/03/2015

1 Evaluation of Giggles Learning Centre - Kiripaka

How well placed is Giggles Learning Centre - Kiripaka 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.


Giggles Learning Centre - Kiripaka is one of two centres in North Whangarei operated by the same owner. The centre serves families and children from Tikipunga and other areas of Whangarei.

The centre was licensed in April 2013 and this is its first ERO review. Policy and procedural guidelines for the established Giggles Learning Centre, Cairnfield, provide the basis for the new centre’s operations. Centre managers and staff work alongside families and whānau to find out how they can best support parents’ particular requirements, including supporting their aspirations for their tamariki.

The centre offers full time and sessional education and care for 30 children from two to five years old. The centre’s philosophy emphasises the importance of whanaungatanga, whakamana, kotahitanga and kaitiakitanga in developing children’s identities as successful learners and teachers. Māori children represent 63 percent of the centre’s roll.

The Review Findings

Teachers know children and their families well and provide very good care. Warm, respectful relationships are evident between teachers and children, and with parents. Consistent with the centre’s philosophy of developing strong whānau relationships, teachers provide children with opportunities to build on learning that occurs at home. Centre staff support parents by sharing ideas and resources that parents could use with their children.

Children are well supported by teachers to develop social skills that help them to learn. As a result, children settle well to their play and make friends confidently. They have opportunities to play independently and to interact cooperatively with others.

Teachers provide an unhurried centre environment that makes it easy for children to learn. They provide meaningful opportunities for children to explore the natural environment and te Āo Māori. Māori children benefit from hearing and using te reo Māori, karakia and waiata in their play. Staff use Māori children’s culture, identity and language in programme planning and delivery. Parents of Māori children report that their tamariki are well supported in the centre and are confident.

There are some good examples of teachers extending children’s learning. These models of sustained, extended play could provide a basis for developing greater consistency of good quality teaching and learning practices as teachers develop the centre programme further.

Effective leadership and management practices impact positively on ongoing improvement. Centre managers and staff work collaboratively to ensure ongoing centre improvement. Culturally inclusive centre practices have been well informed by self review. Staff have sought feedback from families and the views of Māori and the wider community.

Well considered programme planning responds to children’s interests. Teachers take care to align planning and assessment closely to Te Whāriki, the New Zealand early childhood curriculum, and take account of current early childhood education theories.

To improve the programme, centre leaders have identified that staff should:

  • provide more opportunities for children to explore and choose resources to support their learning
  • revisit individual children’s learning in planning and assessment to promote and share children’s progress.

Management areas that have been identified for further development and review include:

  • refining teacher appraisal by providing opportunities for teachers to reflect on their role in promoting children’s learning
  • strengthening good self-review processes now in place by evaluating the implications for teacher practice on an ongoing basis
  • communicating with parents in various ways about early childhood education principles and practice.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Giggles Learning Centre - Kiripaka 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 Giggles Learning Centre - Kiripaka will be in three years.

Dale Bailey

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

11 March 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


Tikipunga, Whangarei

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 21

Boys 13

Ethnic composition



South African




Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

January 2015

Date of this report

11 March 2015

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 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.