Kindercare Learning Centres (308) Johnsonville - 30/09/2019

1 Evaluation of Kindercare Learning Centres (308) Johnsonville

How well placed is Kindercare Learning Centres (308) Johnsonville to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Kindercare Learning Centres (308) Johnsonville is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Kindercare Learning Centres (308) Johnsonville is one of eight early learning services in the Wellington region owned and operated by Kindercare Learning Centres Ltd (the organisation). The service is licensed for 100 children, including up to 40 aged under two years. At the time of this review, 119 children were enrolled. Families represent a range of cultures and ethnic groups. Many children are English language learners.

The purpose-built centre caters for children in age-specific rooms with some shared outdoor spaces. The organisation provides policies, procedures and a framework to monitor health and safety. An area manager works in partnership with the centre director to support operations.

The service philosophy is based on Kindercare’s three key values, ‘Safe, Loved and Learning.’

Since the April 2016 ERO review, there have been some significant staff changes including a new director and curriculum advisor. Most staff are qualified early childhood teachers.

The 2016 ERO report identified areas requiring further development. These included the bicultural curriculum, promoting educational success for Māori, strategies for teaching children who have English as a second language, internal evaluation and planning for learning. Progress has been made in some areas.

This review was one of five in Kindercare Learning Centres Ltd in Wellington.

The Review Findings

Teachers have caring, positive relationships with children. They collectively plan experiences to provoke children's interest and participation and extend their ideas. Literacy, mathematics, science, creativity, social activities and physical play are carefully integrated into the daily programme. The centre is an attractive learning environment. The carefully developed outdoor play space is well used for physical and social play.

For much of the day, children can freely access a range of resources to support their interests. However, teachers need to provide children with more opportunities to lead their own learning, express themselves creatively, and return to and sustain their play. They need to revisit the organisation of some routines, particularly at programme transition times, to ensure these are sufficiently responsive to children's needs.

Children with additional learning needs are identified and support is provided to help them settle and engage with the programme. Further assistance for these children can be accessed through the organisation if required.

Infants and toddlers display a strong sense of wellbeing and belonging in their play space. They benefit from calm and unhurried routines, well-established relationships, and their teachers' affirming and reassuring practices.

Progress has been made in improving communication and relationships with families. There are now opportunities for parents to express their points of view, find out about aspects of early childhood curriculum and contribute to their children's learning programme.

Suitable guidelines and processes are in place to support children and their families to transition into and through the various classrooms. These include collaboration with parents and whānau and careful consideration of children's emotional needs.

A school readiness program includes a focus on developing children's confidence and persistence as learners. An agreed next step is to develop purposeful relationships with local primary schools to better facilitate information sharing about programmes and individual children. A review of the current practices would be timely.

Teachers' understanding of culturally responsive practice and implementing a culturally responsive curriculum requires further development. Strategic goals and professional support are being put in place at governance level to promote improvement and should be evaluated over time to monitor progress towards these goals.

Good progress has been made in making group planning visible for children and parents. Parents and children can revisit and have input into the planned learning. A next step for teachers is to evaluate how well this approach to planning is supporting teaching and learning.

Assessment and planning practices for individual children's learning continues to require development. Leaders have identified that parents' aspirations for their children's learning, bicultural perspectives and children's cultures requires better acknowledgment and be more visible in learning records. Teachers should strengthen the focus on each child's significant learning, interests, emerging ideas and working theories. They need to clearly identify the strategies planned to progress children's ideas and learning.

In consultation with whānau and community, leaders and teachers should establish localised valued learning priorities that reflect the early childhood curriculum, Te Whāriki. Clarifying what learning matters most to this learning community, should support consistency and deliberate actions within the programme, and in assessment, planning and evaluation practices.

Teachers and leaders are improvement focused. To strengthen decision making about change and next development steps using a process that includes evaluating the effectiveness of practices should be implemented and aligned to centre and teachers' priorities.

The organisation has established systems to support the professional learning and development of teachers. There is a clear focus on building leadership. To better promote positive outcomes for children, the implementation and consistency of appraisal and mentoring processes should be improved. In addition, targeted formal observations of all teachers’ practice, should be undertaken.

A next step for the organisation is to evaluate how consistently leaders, including managers and centre directors, build teachers’ capability and improve practice. Feedback at all levels should be more strongly focused on constructive critique, meaningful challenge, and evidence of teaching and learning progress, to better promote timely improvement.

Key Next Steps

At service level priorities are to:

  • provide more opportunities for children to lead their own learning, express themselves creatively, and revisit and sustain their play

  • identify priority learning outcomes, in collaboration with families and the community

  • strengthen the bicultural curriculum

  • build understanding of culturally responsive practice and implement strategies that promote, success for Māori and Pacific children

  • continue to develop and improve assessment and planning for learning practices

  • further develop understanding and use of internal evaluation and teacher inquiry.

The organisation should continue to strengthen and embed:

  • the reflection of the principles of The Treaty of Waitangi in guiding documents and teacher practices

  • evaluation of effectiveness at leadership, management and governance level

  • alignment of strategic planning, internal evaluation and reporting.

The organisation needs to strengthen the effectiveness of leaders in building teachers’ capability and improving practice. Attention should be paid to ensuring the key next steps identified in this service’s ERO report are addressed.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Kindercare Learning Centres (308) Johnsonville 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.

Dr Lesley Patterson

Director Review and Improvement Te Tai Tini

Southern Region

30 September 2019

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

Location

Wellington

Ministry of Education profile number

45930

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

100 children, including up to 40 aged under 2

Service roll

119

Gender composition

Males 72, Females 47

Ethnic composition

Māori
NZ European/Pākehā
Chinese
Indian
British
Filipino
Other ethnic groups

7
46
21
15
7
5
18

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:4

Better than minimum requirements

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

July 2019

Date of this report

30 September 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

April 2016

Education Review

April 2014

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

The overall judgement that ERO makes will depend on how well the service promotes positive learning outcomes for children. The categories are:

  • Very well placed

  • Well placed

  • Requires further development

  • Not well placed

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.