Karanga Mai Early Learning Centre - 25/05/2016

1 Evaluation of Karanga Mai Early Learning Centre

How well placed is Karanga Mai Early Learning Centre to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Karanga Mai Early Learning Centre is very well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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


The centre is effectively governed by Wellbeing North Canterbury Community Trust. It maintains close links with the Karanga Mai Young Parents' College bringing positive outcomes for children and their families. The centre and college are in the same building on the grounds of Kaiapoi High School. Parents and children travel by van to the centre from a wide geographical area of Christchurch and North Canterbury, enabling high levels of participation.

Karanga Mai caters for babies and children to school age in one large area where specific spaces are set aside for babies. The grounds are spacious, very well maintained and reflect the centre's focus on children's wellbeing and caring for the environment. The service specialises in the care and education of infants, toddlers and their families. Currently most children are either infants or toddlers.

The senior teacher leads the day-to-day running of the centre and is supported well by the assistant head teacher. Leadership is shared across the centre. The use of teachers' strengths ensures that the needs of children and their families are met. The majority of staff are qualified and registered early childhood teachers.

The centre philosophy strongly supports trusting respectful relationships to meet the social, cultural, emotional, physical and educational needs of children and their families.

The 2012 ERO review found that the centre needed to make improvements in appraisal, planning, assessment, strategic and self-review practices. The senior teacher, supported by the manager of the Trust Board and staff, has made significant improvements in these areas.

The Review Findings

The centre programme is closely aligned to the expectations of Te Whāriki, the Early Childhood Curriculum. The staff provide a holistic curriculum that enhances children's competence and confidence. Children's curiosity is encouraged by the wide range of experiences that support their interests and abilities. Teachers actively support children's wellbeing through promoting positive relationships, healthy eating and their involvement in physical activity.

Teachers have continued to build on a well-established bicultural environment. The positive relationships, family-oriented activities and collaboration with parents strongly reflect the Māori values of manaakitanga and whanaungatanga. The appropriate use of tuakana-teina teaching and learning relationships effectively support the focus on respect, caring and aroha.

Teachers plan collaboratively. They respond to parents’ wishes for the education and care of their children. They share information about children so that all teachers can support an individual child's interests and needs. Children have meaningful experiences in and beyond the centre, including visits to their local marae.

Teachers take an effective solutions-based approach to meeting children's needs. They actively seek parent and child voice, and use this information to guide their planning and presentation of the learning environment.

Children are able to revisit or share their learning. Attractively presented portfolios, books and wall displays record children's excursions, experiences and social events with their whānau. The learning stories are respectful of children's cultural backgrounds. Staff are highly responsive to parents’ desire that they enhance outcomes for children.

The centre's strategic plan has clear links to the Trust’s goals and the annual objectives for the centre. Specific actions to meet the goals are clearly outlined. The recently-developed appraisal system is clearly defined and well aligned to the expectations of the Practising Teacher Criteria and the cultural competencies set out in the Ministry of Education document, Tātaiako.

The self-review process effectively uses an evaluative approach that focuses on identifying the centre's strengths and any possible areas for further improvements. Parents and whānau make useful contributions to the self-review programme.

The centre's focus on the wellbeing of teen parents and their children, collaboration with a range of agencies and aspiring for high standards has been recognised by the Prime Minister's excellence awards programme. At the time of this review visit the centre was a finalist.

Next Steps

Centre leaders have identified, and ERO agrees, that their next steps are to sustain improvements in the quality of teaching and learning with consistency in assessment for children's learning. They need to embed the improvements to teacher appraisal through the senior teacher recording formal observations and feedback related to teaching practice and appraisal goals.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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 Karanga Mai Early Learning Centre will be in four years.

Chris Rowe Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern (Acting)

25 May 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


Kaiapoi, North Canterbury

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

29 children, including up to 25 aged under two

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 17; Girls 14

Ethnic composition



Cook Island




Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

March 2016

Date of this report

25 May 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

October 2012

Education Review

August 2009

Education Review

March 2006

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.