Greenmeadows Kindergarten - 09/10/2019

1 Evaluation of Greenmeadows Kindergarten

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

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

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

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

Background

Greenmeadows Kindergarten is situated in the Napier suburb of Greenmeadows. It provides early childhood education and care for up to 45 children aged over two. At the time of this ERO evaluation there are 48 children enrolled and 13 are Māori.

The intended outcomes for children are encompassed in the kindergarten philosophy - He taonga te atawhai, te manaaki, te whakawhanaungatanga. Ko ā tātou tamariki mokopuna ngā rangatira mō āpōpō - we are a nurturing and welcoming community of learners who foster partnerships. We value children as leaders of their own learning.

The kindergarten has attained green/gold status within the Enviroschools programme.

Greenmeadows Kindergarten is one of 16 kindergartens operating under the governance and management of the Napier Kindergarten Association (the association). The governing board is responsible for setting the overall strategic direction for the organisation. The day-to-day operation of the association is the role of the general manager. Two education managers provide teaching and learning support for teachers. The board employs a Pou Whakarewa Mātauranga (professional practice advisor Māori) to work alongside all association personnel to continue to strengthen cultural responsiveness.

Teachers have focused on addressing the key next steps identified in the December 2015 ERO evaluation and have strengthened assessment, planning and evaluation.

This review was part of a cluster of 16 kindergarten reviews in the Napier Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Children are actively involved in leading their own learning. They access a wide range of meaningful experiences. They play independently, cooperatively and demonstrate responsibility. Children are comfortable with routines and they are well supported by teachers to extend their learning within the environment. Creativity, literacy and numeracy feature strongly in the curriculum which incorporates a focus on te Ao Māori. These are integrated into meaningful contexts that promote children's learning.

Children experience a curriculum that builds on their needs, strengths and interests. Since the previous ERO evaluation teachers have developed and embedded an effective planning framework. As a result of extensive research and evaluation, teachers have implemented a visual planning and assessment system. Through gathering multiple voices, teachers developed a curriculum statement that encompasses the philosophy and expressed priorities for children's learning.

Authentic learning partnerships are fostered. Parents and whānau aspirations for their children are valued and acknowledged. These are integral in assessment and planning processes. Ownership of learning by children and their families is evident. Teachers value the knowledge that whānau bring to their children's learning. Parents and whānau are confident to contribute to and lead aspects of the programme.

Warm and caring relationships between children and teachers provide a strong foundation for learning. Inclusive practices support all children to participate fully in all aspects of the programme. Teachers work diligently to make children's transitions into and out of the kindergarten a positive experience. Teachers skilfully support children's social development and positive interactions.

Children's learning is enhanced through teachers working collaboratively. Teachers' strengths are valued and maximised to grow knowledge, understanding and teaching practice. They have developed a supportive and respectful culture that is underpinned by shared values, beliefs and mutual trust. Teachers are receptive to the participation of children and their whānau in decision making. This strong team approach contributes to strengthening practices and positive learning outcomes for children.

Successfully implemented strategies promote success for Māori children. Teachers support children to have a strong sense of who they are culturally. Kaupapa Māori concepts such as manaakitanga, wairuatanga, whanaungatanga and kaitiakitanga are integral to curriculum decisions. Teachers follow whānau Māori aspirations that maintain children's connections to their cultural identity.

The teaching team continues to develop internal evaluation as a tool to critically reflect on practice. Continuing to strengthen internal evaluation practices should further support teachers to know how well their actions improve learning outcomes for children. Education managers should continue to grow their own knowledge and practice of effective internal evaluation to better support this process.

The governing board is future-focused and has developed a clear strategic direction to meet the diverse needs of its communities. Board members value diversity of viewpoints and gather community and staff voice to inform decision-making. Regular reporting by the education managers is useful in identifying how strategic teaching and learning goals are being addressed.

The board places importance on developing teachers' capabilities. Targeted and deliberate building of cultural responsiveness supports Māori children and their whānau to experience success. An association-wide appraisal process is in place to support teacher practice in promoting positive learning outcomes for children. Further strengthening of the appraisal process, including targeted observations, should support teachers to determine how well they are progressing and actively encourage them to improve their effectiveness.

Key Next Steps

Teachers at Greenmeadows Kindergarten should continue to strengthen internal evaluation practices that support them to know how well their actions improve learning outcomes for children.

Education managers should continue to promote sustained improvement and innovation through strengthening:

  • evaluation, inquiry and professional guidance

  • the appraisal process.

Recommendation

Education managers should strengthen their understanding and use of internal evaluation to systematically evaluate their practices and the impact of these on outcomes for children.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Greenmeadows 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.

Phil Cowie

Director Review and Improvement Services Central

Central Region

9 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

Napier

Ministry of Education profile number

5278

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

45 children aged over 2

Service roll

48

Gender composition

Female 29, Male 29

Ethnic composition

Māori
NZ European/Pākehā
Other ethnic groups

13
23
12

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

September 2019

Date of this report

9 October 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

December 2015

Education Review

October 2012

Education Review

May 2009

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.