Jubilee Catholic Early Childhood Centre - 22/12/2009

1. The Education Review Office (ERO) Evaluation

Jubilee Catholic Early Childhood Centre is located in Hamilton East adjacent to a Catholic primary school. It operates under the umbrella of the Catholic Diocese and provides education and care for children from three years to school age. The centre provides a sessional programme, is licensed for thirty children and at the time of the review its roll was 39.

The centre’s special Catholic character is reflected in all aspects of its operations and is strongly evident through the centre’s comprehensive pastoral care practices. It maintains close links with the local parish community. Children are involved in the recital of daily prayers and celebrations of religious events are regularly undertaken as part of the centre’s programme. The Christian philosophy is strongly evident. This inclusive culture contributes to children and families’ sense of wellbeing and belonging.

An experienced and knowledgeable centre leader, well supported by a cohesive teaching team, demonstrates a strong commitment to supporting children and their families. Teachers know children and their families well and recognise and actively promote children’s cultural heritage. Te reo Māori is frequently used by teachers and is naturally integrated into the daily programme. Regular visits to the local school support children in their transition to the next stage of learning. Literacy and mathematics concepts are reinforced through play and learning activities. Children’s learning and care needs are well supported by positive and affirming interactions between teachers and children.

The physical environment is attractively presented and wall displays celebrate children’s learning. A feature of the centre is the opportunities for imaginary play in authentic contexts in a variety of different learning areas.

There is now a need for teachers to review aspects of programme planning and delivery to further strengthen the centre’s commitment to providing child-initiated learning opportunities.

Future Action 

ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interests of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the service again as part of the regular review cycle.

2. Review Priorities

The Focus of the Review

Before the review, the management of Jubilee Catholic Early Childhood Centre was invited to consider its priorities for review using guidelines and resources provided by ERO. ERO also used documentation provided by the centre to contribute to the scope of the review.

The detailed priorities for review were then determined following a discussion between the ERO review team and the management and staff. This discussion focused on existing information held by the centre (including self-review information) and the extent to which potential issues for review contributed to positive outcomes for children at Jubilee Catholic Early Childhood Centre.

All ERO education reviews in early childhood focus on the quality of education. For ERO this includes the quality of:

  • the programme provided for children;
  • the learning environment; and
  • the interactions between children and adults.

ERO’s findings in these areas are set out below. [Add headings (style Heading 2- use initial caps) relating to each of these focus areas]

The Quality of Education

Background

Jubilee Catholic Early Childhood centre aims to provide a high quality education and care programme embracing the aspirations of Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum and the centre’s special Catholic character.

Areas of good performance

Special character: The centre’s special Catholic character permeates all aspects of its operations. Close links have been established with the local parish community. Daily prayers and celebration of liturgical events are regular aspects of the programme and enhance the centre’s special character. These activities and events contribute to the centre realising its philosophy of nurturing children’s spiritual development within the charisms of the Roman Catholic Church.

Transition to school: Teachers continue to provide sound transition to school practices for children and their families. Regular visits to the local school provide children with experience in aspects of classroom and playground activities. Children and their families are well supported in their transition to their next stage of learning.

Interactions: Children’s learning and care needs are well supported by positive and affirming interactions with teachers. Teachers know children and their families well and recognise and actively promote children’s cultural heritage. They use a wide range of techniques to scaffold children’s learning and model appropriate behaviours. Te reo Mäori is naturally integrated into the daily programme, through teachers giving instructions and in conversations with children. Responsive and reciprocal relationships are contributing to children’s active participation in the daily learning programme.

Pastoral care: The centre’s Christian philosophy is strongly evident through comprehensive pastoral care networks and practices. Centre leaders and staff demonstrate ongoing support for all families, including those new to New Zealand. Where necessary, links are made with external agencies to support children and their families. This inclusive culture contributes to the sense of wellbeing and belonging of children and their families.

Assessment and planning: Aspects of assessment and planning are highly visible in the centre environment. A daily diary and computerised slide show provides families with extensive information about the centre programme and children’s activities. Attractively presented children’s portfolios include learning stories, narratives and work samples. Clear links are made to Te Whāriki, and include many examples of children’s voice. Parents and families are kept well informed about their children’s activities and learning.

Learning environment: The physical environment is attractively presented. Wall displays celebrate children’s learning. The outdoor play area contributes to the development of children’s physical and coordination skills. Children are able to move easily between indoor and outdoor areas to explore their interests and ideas. A feature of the centre is the opportunities provided for imaginary play in authentic contexts through the provision of a variety of different learning areas.

Areas for improvement

Child- initiated learning: Teachers need to review aspects of the centre programme to further promote and enhance children as self-directed learners. Areas for review include:

  • children’s independent access to the centre’s wide range of resources; and
  • the impact of centre routines on children’s opportunities for sustained play.

Attention to these aspects of operations is likely to assist the centre to meet its stated goal of providing child-initiated learning.

Assessment and evaluation: While teachers have worked hard to develop assessment practice and programme evaluation, this is an area that requires further strengthening. Centre leaders and teachers need to include a focus on learning outcomes for children in programme evaluations. In addition, children’s profiles could be enhanced through the more consistent identification of dispositions and linking learning progressions over time. Strengthening assessment and programme evaluation is likely to enable teachers to respond to children’s ongoing learning needs and emerging interests.

3. Area of National Interest

Overview

ERO provides information about the education system as a whole through its national reports. This information will be used as the basis for long term and systemic educational improvement.

Literacy Teaching and Learning

When children understand, enjoy, engage with, and use language and symbols they are better able to express their individual identity and become active participants in a literate society. As part of this review ERO looked at literacy practices, particularly the opportunities provided for children to develop strong literacy learning foundations.

Either

In this service children’s literacy learning opportunities included:

  • children memorising and reciting prayers and sayings related to the centre’s special Catholic character;
  • teachers listening and responding to children and building on conversations;
  • teachers documenting and displaying children’s oral language;
  • the use of books and profiles to discuss and celebrate children’s learning and experiences;
  • teachers and children singing and chanting well-known songs and nursery rhymes;
  • children’s access to writing tools and use of props in authentic contexts such as shopping, gardening and science experiments;
  • teachers sharing books and poems to model concepts about print;
  • teachers scaffolding learning conversations and questioning children to engage them with text; and
  • children accessing the local school library on a weekly basis to enable them to enjoy a wide range of literacy materials.

4. Management Assurance on Compliance Areas

Overview

Before the review, the licensee and staff of Jubilee Catholic Early Childhood Centre completed an ERO Centre Management Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they have attested that they had taken all reasonable steps to meet their legislative obligations related to:

  • administration;
  • health, safety and welfare;
  • personnel management; and
  • financial and property management.

During the review, ERO checked the following items because they have a potentially high impact on outcomes for children:

  • emotional safety (including behaviour management, prevention of bullying and abuse);
  • physical safety (including behaviour management, sleeping and supervision practices; accidents and medication; hygiene and routines; travel and excursion policies and procedures);
  • staff qualifications and organisation; and
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

ERO’s investigations did not identify any areas of concern.

5. Recommendation

ERO and the Centre Management agreed that:

    1. teachers review aspects of programme implementation outlined in this report to further enhance learning outcomes for children.

    6. Future Action  

    ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interests of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the service again as part of the regular review cycle.

    Dr Graham Stoop

    Chief Review Officer

    22 December 2009

    About the Centre

    Location  

    Hamilton

    Ministry of Education profile number

    30185

    Type  

    Education and Care Service

    Number licensed for

    30 children over three years

    Roll number

    39

    Gender composition 

    Boys 20

    Girls 19

    Ethnic composition  

    New Zealand European/Pākehā 20 

    Pacific 4

    Other European 4

    Asian 3

    New Zealand Māori 2

    Indian 2

    Other 4

    Review team on site Month and year on site

    November 2009

    Date of this report  

    22 December 2009 

    Previous ERO reports Type  

    Education Review February 2007

    Education Review March 2004

    To the Parents and Community of Jubilee Catholic Early Childhood Centre

    These are the findings of the Education Review Office’s latest report onJubilee Catholic Early Childhood Centre.

    Jubilee Catholic Early Childhood Centre is located in Hamilton East adjacent to a Catholic primary school. It operates under the umbrella of the Catholic Diocese and provides education and care for children from three years to school age. The centre provides a sessional programme, is licensed for thirty children and at the time of the review its roll was 39.

    The centre’s special Catholic character is reflected in all aspects of its operations and is strongly evident through the centre’s comprehensive pastoral care practices. It maintains close links with the local parish community. Children are involved in the recital of daily prayers and celebrations of religious events are regularly undertaken as part of the centre’s programme. The Christian philosophy is strongly evident. This inclusive culture contributes to children and families’ sense of wellbeing and belonging.

    An experienced and knowledgeable centre leader, well supported by a cohesive teaching team, demonstrates a strong commitment to supporting children and their families. Teachers know children and their families well and recognise and actively promote children’s cultural heritage. Te reo Māori is frequently used by teachers and is naturally integrated into the daily programme. Regular visits to the local school support children in their transition to the next stage of learning. Literacy and mathematics concepts are reinforced through play and learning activities. Children’s learning and care needs are well supported by positive and affirming interactions between teachers and children.

    The physical environment is attractively presented and wall displays celebrate children’s learning. A feature of the centre is the opportunities for imaginary play in authentic contexts in a variety of different learning areas.

    There is now a need for teachers to review aspects of programme planning and delivery to further strengthen the centre’s commitment to providing child-initiated learning opportunities.

    Future Action 

    ERO is confident that the service is being managed in the interests of the children. Therefore ERO is likely to review the service again as part of the regular review cycle.

    When ERO has reviewed an early childhood centre we encourage management to inform their community of any follow up action they plan to take. You should talk to the management or licensee if you have any questions about this evaluation, the full ERO report or their future intentions.

    If you would like a copy of the full report, please contact the centre or see the ERO website, http://www.ero.govt.nz.

    Dr Graham Stoop

    Chief Review Officer