Kidsfirst Kindergartens Riccarton - 21/11/2012

1 Evaluation of the Service

How well placed is the service to promote positive outcomes for children?

Kidsfirst Kindergartens Riccarton is well placed to promote positive outcomes for children.


Kidsfirst Kindergartens administers 62 kindergartens and one early learning centre in Canterbury and the West Coast. An education services manager (ESM) works with each kindergarten giving feedback and professional support. All teachers employed by Kidsfirst Kindergartens are fully qualified and registered early childhood teachers.

The Christchurch 2011 earthquakes have had a considerable impact on this kindergarten. The area has changed from residential to commercial with many homes becoming offices. The teachers have had to make significant changes to the programme and their teaching to provide for younger children, longer session hours and children and families new to this community.

This review was conducted as part of a cluster approach to reviews in eight kindergartens and one early childhood education services within the Kidsfirst Kindergartens umbrella organisation.

Areas of strength

Children are settled and confident in the kindergarten environment. Teachers warmly greet children and help them to choose from the wide range of resources available. They regularly introduce children to others in a group. They thoughtfully explain the play and ways that the child can join in.

Parents and whānau are welcome and comfortable in the programme. Teachers show genuine interest in families’ wellbeing. They seek to find out more about their home cultures to make closer links between home and kindergarten experiences.

Teachers carefully listen to children, ask questions and make suggestions to help children develop their ideas and extend their learning. They skilfully integrate literacy and numeracy into activities in many meaningful and relevant ways.

The environment is visually attractive and well set up to engage a range of learners, including those who have English as a second language. Children confidently use information and communication technologies (ICT) independently and in groups. Carefully selected programmes promote children’s language development, social interactions and provide challenge to a range of age groups.

Teachers work cooperatively as team members. They model the respectful behaviours that they expect of children. They willingly share their skills and support each other in the programme.

Group planning successfully identifies a programme focus that includes all children. It gives appropriate direction for teaching and expectations for learning. Regular entries show children’s progress in achieving the expected learning outcomes.

The education services manager (ESM) and the association have provided considerable support to the head teacher and staff since the Christchurch earthquakes in 2011. The head teacher is actively reflecting on and managing the changes that have taken place in the kindergarten as a result of the earthquakes.

Kidsfirst Kindergartens has a well-developed policy and practice framework to support the daily and long-term operation of the kindergarten. The association is kept well informed about the work of the kindergarten. Kidsfirst Kindergartens’ managers have recently developed a new process for reviewing and reporting kindergarten information. This process is likely to help them to further target their support to improve learning outcomes for children.

Areas for development and review

The ESM and head teacher identified, and ERO agrees, that the next steps for the kindergarten include:

  • strengthening self review, assessment and programme evaluation to improve learning and teaching
  • increasing bicultural knowledge and understanding to promote Māori succeeding as Māori.

2 Legal Requirements

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the management of Kidsfirst Kindergartens Riccarton 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:

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

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.

3 Next Review

When is ERO likely to review the early childhood service again?

ERO is likely to carry out the next review in three years.

Graham Randell

National Manager Review Services Southern Region

21 November 2012

Information about the Early Childhood Service


Riccarton, Christchurch

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type


Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Centres) Regulations 1998

Number licensed for

30 children over two years of age number

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 17; Girls 12

Ethnic composition

New Zealand European/Pākehā




Other ethnicities






Review team on site

August 2012

Date of this report

21 November 2012

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Accountability Review

June 2009

June 2005

December 2000

General Information about Early Childhood Reviews

About ERO Reviews

The Education Review Office (ERO) is the New Zealand government department that reviews schools and early childhood services throughout New Zealand.

Review focus

ERO's education reviews in early childhood services focus on the factors that contribute to positive learning outcomes for children. ERO evaluates how well placed the service is to make and sustain improvements for the benefit of all children at the service. To reach these findings ERO considers:

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 self review and partnerships with parents and whānau.

Review Coverage

ERO reviews do not cover every aspect of service performance and each ERO report may cover different issues. The aim is to provide information on aspects that are central to positive outcomes for children and useful to the service.