Karatia Bilingual Playcentre - 19/09/2016

1 Evaluation of Karatia Bilingual Playcentre

How well placed is Karatia Bilingual Playcentre 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.


Karatia Bilingual Playcentre is situated next to Omanaia School in a small rural settlement, west of Kaikohe. Centre members provide family play sessions three mornings each week for up to 20 children aged from birth to five years.

The centre is part of the Mid Northland Playcentre Association, which provides a framework for centre management and also offers administration support. Association personnel lead Playcentre adult education courses for whānau. Five centre members, including the supervisor, have achieved Course 2 or 3 Playcentre qualifications. The supervisor leads the programme and supports whānau in running the centre.

Playcentre Aotearoa, the national organisation, is currently in the process of a comprehensive restructure. A regional hub will be established to provide governance, management and parent education support for Playcentres north of Auckland.

In its 2012 report on this centre ERO identified significant non-compliance and areas that needed improvement. ERO recommended that centre members work closely with the Association to address these concerns. In 2014 whānau were supported by a Playcentre adviser to improve provision for children. However, many aspects of centre operations still need to be addressed.

The Review Findings

ERO has serious concerns about the quality of care and education provided for children in this centre.

There are some positive features. Children and adults have warm whānau relationships. Adults generally support children to play and have fun. There are some good examples of adults engaging children in learning activities, both inside and in the outdoor play area.

The learning environment and hygiene practices need significant improvement. Centre members should ensure that the centre is regularly and properly cleaned. They should review the resources provided and ensure that they are fit for purpose, accessible and appropriate for supporting children’s learning.

The programme does not provide sufficiently for children’s interests, strengths and abilities. Neither does it reflect a commitment to a bilingual programme. Assessment and planning, and adults’ efforts to promote children’s learning are not effective.

Over time, the supervisor has provided guidance for parents and grandparents who attend, and shown a good commitment to the kaupapa of Playcentre. The next step is for her to share roles and responsibilities with other centre members. There is also an urgent need to review how well training levels meet funding requirements for each session.

There is no planned approach to improvement. As centre members do not have strategic or annual plans to guide development, there has been limited progress. Effective self-review practices have not been established. Policies and procedures do not align with Association developments or recent legal requirements.

The Association has not provided sufficiently effective support to help centre members make sustainable improvements. The new regional manager and officers will need to consider the kind of support necessary to help members retain this community service.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Karatia Bilingual Playcentre 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

Actions for compliance

ERO found significant areas of non-compliance in the service related to:

  • policies and procedures, especially in relation to the Vulnerable Children Act 2014

  • annual planning and a system of regular, improvement focused self review

  • meeting the training and attendance requirements for each funded session

  • the curriculum and learning environment

  • provision for children’s health and safety, including ensuring that there are adequate hand drying facilities available.

Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Centres 2008, HS3,9, GMA6, PF21; Education (ECS) Regulations 2008, 43(1a), 46, 47.

Recommendation to Ministry of Education

ERO recommends that the Ministry reassess the licence of Karatia Bilingual Playcentre. ERO will not undertake a further education review of this service until the Ministry of Education is satisfied that the service meets licensing requirements.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Karatia Bilingual Playcentre will be in consultation with the Ministry of Education.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

19 September 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


Omanaia, Northland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type


Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

20 children, including up to 5 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 10 Boys 5

Ethnic composition





Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Meets minimum requirements

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

July 2016

Date of this report

19 September 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

June 2012

Education Review

February 2008

Education Review

November 2005

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.