Glen Innes Kindergarten - 02/10/2019

1 Evaluation of Glen Innes Kindergarten

How well placed is Glen Innes Kindergarten to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Glen Innes Kindergarten is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Glen Innes Kindergarten is licensed for 30 children over the age of two years. It operates as a Kindergarten Day Model, which enables children to attend sessions similar to school hours.

The kindergarten's philosophy focuses on building relationships with children and their whānau. The teaching team is committed to supporting all children to become independent, resilient and confident learners. Staff maintain a strong focus on responding to and meeting the needs of an increasingly diverse multicultural community, which is experiencing considerable change as the result of a major housing redevelopment project. At the time of this review a new head teacher and a new teacher have recently been recruited.

The kindergarten is part of the Auckland Kindergarten Association (AKA), which provides leadership, a framework of policies and operational guidelines, support personnel and programmes of professional learning and development. Strategic planning supports the kindergartens’ development and future focus. A new AKA structure has been established and new personnel appointed. Many of these roles had recently been established.

This review was part of a cluster of 10 reviews in the Auckland Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Children and their whānau are warmly welcomed into the very well-resourced, calm and spacious learning environments. They are settled and comfortable in the kindergarten. Teachers' caring interactions promote children's wellbeing and foster their sense of belonging. They know children and their whānau well.

Children enjoy good access to a wide range of equipment in both the indoor and outdoor learning spaces, and have many opportunities to make choices about their play. They have fun and play well alongside each other. Extended periods of uninterrupted play enable children to sustain their interest in activities and learning. Children have many opportunities to follow their own interests, and to play independently and collaboratively.

Teachers and teacher aides use te reo Māori and phrases from children's home languages naturally during the day. Teachers could now make families' cultures more visible within the environment.

Teachers are very responsive to children's needs. Professional learning programmes focusing on enriching children's oral language and social competencies have impacted positively on teachers' practice. Teachers and teacher aides all use and model social competencies and appropriate oral language.

Children with additional learning needs are well supported by teachers and teacher aides to ensure all children experience the play-based curriculum. Teachers make good use of external agencies to support these children and their families.

Teachers work collaboratively to plan programmes and assess learning. Children's learning is documented in group and individual learning stories in portfolios. Teachers are now beginning to use this information to plan more explicitly for extending the learning of individual children and show this progress over time.

Children's transitions into the kindergarten and on to school are based on individual needs and are very well planned and managed. Children and their whānau benefit from relationships that teachers have developed with two local primary schools.

There are many opportunities for parents to participate in the kindergarten programme. A parent/whānau group supports learning programmes and helps parents to access local support agencies within the area.

Teachers have completed an evaluation of children's social competencies, which is now well embedded in teaching practice. They continue to work with AKA personnel to enhance their understanding and skills in evaluation. They use the AKA's systematic evaluation framework to guide 'teaching as inquiry' projects that have enhanced their practice.

AKA leaders are supporting the new head teacher's transition well. The AKA continues to provide support for kindergartens to strengthen bicultural practices. In many instances this has made a significant difference to confidence and capability. Specialist support impacts positively on teachers’ confidence and inclusion of children with additional learning needs. Specific programmes that help teachers to support children’s developing social competencies can now be extended across all kindergartens. The strategic direction being established by new AKA leaders is providing a positive framework for kindergartens’ annual planning.

Key Next Steps

Teachers and AKA leaders agree that children would benefit by teachers continuing to:

  • use key next learning steps from children's portfolios to more explicitly plan for individual children

  • enhance ways that children's languages, cultures and identities are evidenced in the environment and programmes

  • use the AKA framework for internal evaluation to determine how effectively the service is providing for the strengths, interests and needs of all children and how their learning is progressing.

It would be useful for AKA to continue supporting the head teacher in her role as a leader and to:

  • clarify new roles and engaging teaching teams in the implementation of the new structure across the AKA

  • increase the rigour of monitoring and quality assurance, and strengthen internal evaluation at all levels of the AKA

  • identify and implement strategies for achieving greater consistency of the practices that are strengths in some kindergartens, across the AKA.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Glen Innes 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.

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services Northern

Northern Region

2 October 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

Glen Innes, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

5051

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children aged over 2 years

Service roll

23

Gender composition

Girls 12 Boys 11

Ethnic composition

Māori
NZ European/Pākehā
Tongan
Samoan
other Pacific

5
6
5
4
3

Percentage of qualified teachers

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

July 2019

Date of this report

2 October 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

January 2016

Education Review

November 2012

Education Review

January 2010

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.