Kidsfirst Kindergartens Lady May - 23/05/2018

1 Evaluation of Kidsfirst Kindergartens Lady May

How well placed is Kidsfirst Kindergartens Lady May to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Kidsfirst Kindergartens Lady May is well placed to provide positive learning outcomes for children.

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


Kidsfirst Kindergartens Lady May is one of 72 early learning services governed and managed by Canterbury Westland Kindergarten Association Incorporated, trading as Kidsfirst Kindergartens. The kindergarten caters for the education and care of young children from the diverse community that it serves.

Since the previous ERO review in 2012 there have been some changes to leadership and the teaching team. All teachers/kaiako are qualified and certified early childhood teachers/kaiako. A head teacher/kaiako oversees the day-to-day operation of the kindergarten. An association education manager (EM) provides consistent professional advice and guidance to support the effective operation of the service.

The teaching team has responded well to the recommendations from the 2012 ERO report. This included further developing assessment, aspects of internal evaluation (self review) and the use of information technologies in children's learning.

The kindergarten is part of the Putaringamotu Kāhui Ako|Community of Learning which has a focus on educational success for tamariki Māori as Māori.

This review was part of a cluster of 10 kindergartens governed and managed by the Canterbury Westland Kidsfirst Kindergartens Association.

The Review Findings

Teachers/kaiako foster a culture where children, parents and whānau are valued and affirmed for who they are and what they can contribute to children's learning. Leaders and teachers/kaiako actively engage in respectful and inclusive relationships with a focus on supporting the holistic needs of the children and their families.

Children are well supported in their learning. Teachers/kaiako are responsive to the interests, strengths and capabilities of children. They know the children well and provide sensitive and flexible interactions to help them to succeed in their learning. The curriculum effectively promotes child choice and independence.

The kindergarten's shared vision and values are clearly evident in the positive way teachers/kaiako work with children, parents and whānau. Teachers/kaiako have a focus on fostering children's sense of belonging to their kindergarten.

Cultural diversity is respected and valued in the kindergarten. Engagement with children and families from diverse backgrounds occurs in meaningful ways. The language, culture and identity of children and families are highly respected and celebrated. Teachers/kaiako value parent voice and involvement in their children's learning and wellbeing.

Leaders and teachers/kaiako have a strong commitment to providing a bicultural curriculum that is meaningful for children and promotes success for Māori children as Māori. Te reo and tikanga Māori are very evident in the curriculum and programme. Leaders and teachers/kaiako have used internal evaluation to discuss more deeply their understandings of Māori concepts and the physical environment. This has resulted in an increased awareness of what is important for tamariki Māori and their whānau and changes to the environment.

Leaders and teachers/kaiako are building culturally responsive practices, knowledge and understanding of Pacific languages and cultures. They are developing processes to respond to Pacific knowledge, culture and ways of learning.

Leaders have built strong links with the community to enhance children's learning and to support their transitions to local schools.

The Canterbury Westland Kindergarten Association has a well-developed and clearly understood vision. It is underpinned by targeted strategic and annual planning systems. There are close links between the kindergarten plans, internal evaluation, appraisal and professional development. The teachers/kaiako are well supported by association managers and leaders to achieve the priorities of the kindergarten and to promote high quality learning outcomes for all children.

The board is committed and highly skilled. The association has a very strong commitment to providing high quality professional development to build on leadership capacity and teacher/kaiako capability. It has high expectations for teaching and learning and equitable outcomes for all children. This includes a strong focus on promoting understandings of and respect for te ao Māori (the Māori world) at all levels of the organisation. The association's internal evaluation practices are being well used to inform decision making and support the strong focus on continuous improvement.

Key Next Steps

The education manager and teaching team have identified, and ERO agree, that the key next steps are to:

  • refine annual planning to focus on prioritising specific actions, strategies, and timeframes that connect to measurable outcomes for children
  • strengthen teachers' knowledge and understanding of internal evaluation processes to identify strategies and programmes that are most effective in promoting positive outcomes for children.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Kidsfirst Kindergartens Lady May 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 Kidsfirst Kindergartens Lady May will be in three years.

Dr Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer

Te Waipounamu - Southern Region

23 May 2018

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

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, over the age of two years

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 12 : Girls 16

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


Meets minimum requirements

28Review team on site

March 2018

Date of this report

23 May 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

November 2012

Education Review

June 2009

Accountability Review

December 2004

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.