Inglewood Kindergarten - 30/10/2013

1 Evaluation of Inglewood Kindergarten

How well placed is Inglewood Kindergarten 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.

Background

Inglewood Kindergarten is one of sixteen kindergartens managed by the North Taranaki Kindergarten Association (the association). The association governing board is responsible for setting overall strategic and policy direction for the organisation. Senior teachers are employed by the association to support teaching and learning.

The service is licensed for 34 children aged from two to five years. Children enrol from both urban and rural backgrounds. Some travel a considerable distance and do not attend every day. Sessions are mixed-age to respond to families’ needs and to allow siblings to attend together. The kindergarten employs four qualified and registered teachers.

A philosophy based on an unhurried approach to learning, free choice and exploring the world is evident in teachers’ practice. Partnerships with families are valued. Relationships are respectful and support children’s wellbeing.

The kindergarten has a positive reporting history with ERO. Staffing has undergone considerable change since the August 2010 ERO report, including the appointment of a head teacher. The new team is developing shared values and a collaborative culture.

This review was part of a cluster of eight kindergarten reviews in the North Taranaki Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Board members undertake regular training and have developed useful processes to support governance roles and responsibilities. The senior teacher provides effective professional leadership. She visits the kindergarten regularly and works alongside the teaching team to support development of practice. These association processes help to promote positive outcomes for children.

The curriculum is closely linked to the kindergarten’s philosophy which includes a focus on sustainable environments. Teachers have talked with parents about aspirations for their children and the values they believe are important. The head teacher is leading a review to evaluate and improve assessment. The review plan includes guiding questions to decide the best way to share individual children’s learning pathways with parents. Learning stories are already including more information about how teachers will enrich children’s interests.

Children’s language, culture and identity are recognised in the curriculum and are acknowledged as strengths. Te reo Māori is deliberately integrated throughout the daily programme. Parents’ views and aspirations are sought in a range of ways that encourage whānau to share their knowledge. Teachers know the children and their families well and work with them to meet their needs.

Children with special needs are supported to learn happily and successfully. They join in group play and teachers help individuals to access and use resources. When appropriate, there is assistance from specialist agencies.

The spacious environment invites children to explore, use imagination and enjoy group learning. Children solve problems and make their own play choices. Flexible routines contribute to their growing independence and confidence.

Children’s social and emotional wellbeing is a priority for teachers as children transition to school. Information provided by the schools is shared with parents and there are some reciprocal visits with local new entrant teachers. Kindergarten teachers are exploring ways to develop closer relationships with the large number of schools that children attend.

Teachers are developing efficient systems for effective self review. Strengthening teachers’ performance appraisal is part of the process.

Leadership is shared. There are opportunities for members of the new teaching team to use their strengths and to follow their interests. The head teacher is establishing efficient management systems. Strategic and annual planning and the kindergarten’s philosophy are closely linked.

Key Next Steps

Teachers’ evaluative review capacity continues to develop. Appropriate next steps include:

  • using self review to strengthen assessment and planning practices to more effectively highlight children’s progress over time
  • developing a more robust, improvement-focused, teacher appraisal process.

Teachers identify, and ERO agrees, that strengthening relationships with local schools is an important next step. Processes to enhance transition should include engaging school personnel in conversations about the curriculum and what a capable early childhood learner looks like.

The association should continue to review appraisal and consider formal critique of teaching practice and feedback processes to improve teaching and learning.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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

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Joyce Gebbie National Manager Review Services Central Region (Acting)

30 October 2013

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

Inglewood

Ministry of Education profile number

5221

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

34 children

Service roll

64

Gender composition

Girls 28, Boys 36

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Pacific

Other ethnic groups

8

51

2

3

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

N/A

 
 

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

September 2013

Date of this report

30 October 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)

 

Education Review

August 2010

 

Education Review

February 2007

 

Education Review

December 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.