Huntsbury Preschool Inc - 27/06/2016

1 Evaluation of Huntsbury Preschool Inc

How well placed is Huntsbury Preschool Inc 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.


Huntsbury Preschool is a community-led early childhood service which provides education and care for children over two years to six years. It is located within the Huntsbury Community Centre. The teachers set up the learning environment on a daily basis.

The outdoor area provides children with a wide range of learning experiences, including opportunities to explore, interact with, and discover the natural world and learn about caring for the environment.

The preschool is well governed and managed by a board of volunteer parents and a long-serving, dedicated team of registered teachers.

The preschool has established close links with a local community cluster of schools. This has supported children's transition to local schools and provided professional development opportunities for teachers.

Since the 2013 ERO review, the leadership of the preschool has changed, the hours have been extended and a fourth teacher has been employed. The recommendations from the last report have been well met. (See findings below)

The Review Findings

Children are actively engaged in meaningful learning experiences that promote and support ongoing learning. The centre programme has a wide range of activities that includes an itinerant music specialist and excursions into the local community.

Teaching practices and engaging activities extend children's interests. Learning experiences for children link closely with the preschool's values, philosophy, vision and Māori values. Teachers provide children with challenge, interest and stimulation that supports thinking and problem-solving skills.

Children and parents actively lead and contribute to the curriculum. Children's contributions, ideas and interests are encouraged, valued and shared. Parent feedback is enthusiastic, positive and well used.

Children's learning is well planned for and well informed by assessment. Teachers use very good systems to analyse children's learning and progress. Priorities for children's learning are effectively shared with the teaching team and reflected in children's learning stories.

Teachers know children and their families well. There are positive and collaborative relationships at all levels. Teachers and parents work together and seek advice from professional agencies to support individual children as a need presents.

Children also benefit from:

  • well-managed transitions into and out of the preschool

  • the well-integrated bicultural programme (including tikanga and te reo Māori) where concepts valued by Māori are shared and well understood

  • a natural outdoor learning area, equipment and resources that encourage physical activities, and creative play.

The preschool is well governed, managed and led. Governance board members, management team, teachers and parents are strongly committed, and have high expectations for teaching and learning. They work collaboratively to ensure that systems for smooth day-to-day running of the preschool are in place. A very effective strategic plan has been implemented which identifies key priorities and guides future developments.

A culture of ongoing reflection, self review and a new appraisal system for teachers have impacted on ongoing improved outcomes for children.

Key Next Steps

The licensee and head teacher have identified, and ERO agrees, that the preschool is in a stage of embedding and sustaining new practices. These include te reo and tikanga Māori; planning and assessment changes; appraisal and the refinement of the self-review process.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Huntsbury Preschool Inc 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 Huntsbury Preschool Inc will be in four years.

Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern

27 June 2016

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

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, two years of age and over

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 23; Girls 14

Ethnic composition



Other ethnicities




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

May 2016

Date of this report

27 June 2016

Most recent ERO reports


Education Review

May 2013

Education Review

June 2013

Education Review

October 2003

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.