Gleniti Playcentre - 07/11/2014

1 Evaluation of Gleniti Playcentre

How well placed is Gleniti Playcentre 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.


Gleniti Playcentre is located in Timaru. It is one of five playcentres in the South Canterbury Playcentre Association. Three are playgroups and this and one other operate as fully-licensed playcentres.

Parents are very involved in their children’s education and with a paid educator they provide five sessions a week for children aged from birth to five years. They follow the playcentre philosophy of child-initiated play and ongoing adult education. In 2014 the playcentre has been encouraged by the number of new families enrolling with their children. A challenge at the time of this review was the news that the centre must relocate to new premises by mid 2015. In addition the association is facing challenges and uncertainty as the Playcentre Federation undergoes a period of change.

The playcentre has made some progress in many areas since the last review and has a positive reporting history with ERO.

This review was part of a cluster of two reviews in the South Canterbury Playcentre Association.

The Review Findings

Children and their families benefit from the very strong sense of community at Gleniti Playcentre. The parents work well together to ensure the effective running of the playcentre and are actively involved in their children’s learning. Families provide ongoing support for each other in times of need.

Children play and learn in well-resourced indoor and outdoor areas. There are many interesting resources to stimulate their curiosity, foster creativity and develop physical skills. Younger children are well provided for. There is an area for infants and toddlers with suitable toys for this age group.

Parents of younger children stay with them and parents of older children take turns to stay and help the educator provide the programme. Parents who are helping bring in materials for activities that children may be interested in, such as baking, special stories or art ideas. ERO observed parents joining children's play and sensitively following their lead. Children settled quickly into play and confidently made choices about where to play and what they wanted to do.

As part of this review, ERO considered how well the programme and educator and parents were helping children to become capable and confident mathematics learners. ERO found there were many opportunities in the daily activities for children to explore and learn mathematics concepts, such as, sorting, measuring and counting. The parents have determined that mathematics is an important learning priority for their children and have included this in their strategic plan. They have begun a review of mathematics and now need to complete this to show how well they are providing for mathematics and what they can do better.

The paid educator effectively works alongside the parents to support children’s learning. This is evident in the way she:

  • is a role model when working with children to build on their ideas and develop their thinking and learning
  • works with parents to build her own and their understanding of how best to plan for and assess children’s learning
  • encourages parents to be their child’s first teacher.

The South Canterbury Playcentre Association has provided the centre with policies and guidelines about how to operate as a playcentre. The educator and parents use these to ensure the efficient overall running of the centre. The parents have developed their own vision for the centre and a useful strategic plan to guide the centre developments.

Key Next Steps

ERO, the educator, and parents agree that the next steps for Gleniti Playcentre to improve outcomes for children are to continue to find ways to:

  • make Māori perspectives more visible in the centre programme, and environment
  • more effectively plan for the learning of individuals and groups of children, and evaluate the progress they have made over time
  • build their knowledge and use of self review.

The association should support the playcentre in progressing these next steps.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Gleniti Playcentre 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 Gleniti Playcentre will be in three years.

Graham Randell

National Manager Review Services

Southern Region

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



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type


Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

20 children, including up to 10 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls: 22

Boys: 15

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā




Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

Parent Led Service, Educator with Playcentre Qualifications

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:1 Parents attend with Children

Meets minimum requirements


Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

August 2014

Date of this report

7 November 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

December 2010


Education Review

August 2007


Education Review

November 2004

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.