Hobsonville Kindergarten - 14/02/2019

1 Evaluation of Hobsonville Kindergarten

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

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

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

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

Background

Hobsonville Kindergarten serves an increasingly culturally diverse community in West Auckland. The service operates a Kindergarten Day model, opening six hours each day, for up to 40 children over two years of age.

The relatively new teaching team includes four registered teachers, who are supported by an administrator and a support staff member. The head teacher has been in her position for almost two years. Strengthening relationships with families has been a priority for the team. The vision and philosophy for the service were developed collaboratively.

The 2015 ERO review highlighted positive aspects of teachers' practice. These practices continue to support children's learning. The teaching team works collaboratively to increase the focus on child-led play, building bicultural practice and learning partnerships with families.

The kindergarten operates as part of the Auckland Kindergarten Association (AKA). The association provides a framework of policies and operational guidelines, support personnel and programmes of professional learning and development. The AKA is establishing new roles and responsibilities at management and governance levels. Recruitment of appropriate personnel to fill identified roles is underway.

This review was part of a cluster of nine reviews in the AKA.

The Review Findings

Teachers provide a welcoming, inclusive environment for children and their families. Children engage quickly in play, and parents are comfortable to stay and settle their children.

Children are confident, articulate and competent in their play. They access resources and materials independently and play for extended periods to achieve their aims. Teachers are encouraging about children's emerging ideas, and use conversation to extend their learning. Good quality resources, including digital technologies, are carefully arranged to provide appropriate spaces for different types of play. The outdoor area provides a range of physical challenges.

Children take a strong leadership role in decision-making about their play. Teachers support children to set learning goals and encourage their ambitions. This practice has led to children's increased understanding about their role in their own learning. Teachers have evaluated the effects of encouraging children's planning, and have taken appropriate steps to increase children's individual thinking and goal setting.

Teachers are focused on improving practice. They have sought and used professional learning opportunities to continue to build their practice. Effective sharing of new learning is contributing to shared approaches to teachers' work with children. Appropriate strategies for distributed leadership, implemented by the head teacher, ensure role sharing and a respectful, cohesive team culture.

Teachers' focus on involving parents in their children's learning has been positive. Parents have contributed to celebrating events and customs from their home cultures. Recent connection with the local school has enabled teachers to provide information about transitioning from the kindergarten.

Teachers and children confidently use te reo Māori during the day. This has been a recent development in teachers' and children's bicultural journey. Teachers help children to learn greetings in a number of other languages. These practices raise awareness of the diverse cultures in this community.

Teachers find the professional development offered by the AKA useful and informative. This support has helped them to develop a vision and to contribute to the priorities for the kindergarten.

Key Next Steps

Key next steps for teachers are to continue to:

  • consider ways of enhancing children's play and learning to more complex levels
  • make Te Whāriki 2017, the early childhood curriculum, more visible in documentation, including children's portfolios, and teachers' appraisal.

It would be useful for AKA to:

  • monitor that all part-time or relieving teachers are well informed about AKA policies and procedures
  • increase support to improve assessment practices, planning and evaluation
  • continue to support teachers to fully implement Te Whāriki 2017.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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

Steve Tanner
Director Review and Improvement Services Northern
Northern Region

14 February 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

Hobsonville, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

5057

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children over 2 years of age

Service roll

53

Gender composition

Girls       32
Boys      21

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Chinese
Asian
other European
other ethnic groups

  9
20
  4
10
  5
  5

Percentage of qualified teachers

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

November 2018

Date of this report

14 February 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

May 2015

Education Review

August 2011

Education Review

September 2008

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.