Kingdom Kidz - 28/02/2019

1 Evaluation of Kingdom Kidz

How well placed is Kingdom Kidz to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Kingdom Kidz is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Kingdom Kidz caters for children from three months to school age and offers full and part-time hours. The centre operates in a rural setting and has a diverse roll, including a high number of Māori children.

Teachers' work with children is inspired by Christian values, Reggio Emilia philosophy and the RIE programme (Resources for Infant Educators). The centre property also provides scope for learning about the natural world.

The majority of teachers hold early childhood qualifications. The owner also employs staff with appropriate experience in early childhood teaching.

The centre owner lives overseas. She returns regularly and maintains close ties with the centre manager and the lead teachers. The manager oversees the daily management of the centre. Lead teachers have responsibility for the children's care routines and learning programmes.

The 2016 ERO review found many good practices were in place. Teachers were proactive and seeking improvement. The report also identified the need to develop the strategic plan, further develop portfolios to reflect children's learning, and to review the appraisal process and the philosophy. These aspects of practice were addressed following the review, but now need further review and updating to reflect current legislation and quality practices.

The Review Findings

Children and their families are warmly welcomed, and children settle quickly to self-chosen play. They are confident and chatty with their peers. Teachers set the environment with provocations to attract children's participation, and in response to children's interests. Some children sustain their play for long periods.

Teachers maintain a quiet, calm atmosphere in the baby and toddler room, respecting children's need for loving care and fostering a sense of wellbeing. These younger children have their own playground and a comfortable playing space indoors. They respond positively to their environment, making choices and practising their beginning language with each other and teachers.

The centre is on an extensive property that includes vegetable gardens that children often help to tend. There are also a small number of animals. A creek with eels adds further interest for children. Sensible gates and fences around the centre keep children safe, while these added opportunities contribute to their learning in a family-farm atmosphere.

Teachers are increasing their use of words and phrases in te reo Māori, and to respect aspects of tikanga in their practice. They have enrolled in a further course for this year to increase their understanding and knowledge of the language. Teachers could more clearly reflect their commitment to bicultural practice in documentation and resources that are available to children.

Teachers provide good support for children with additional educational needs. They work effectively with external agencies to ensure that children feel included. Teachers provide appropriate support to allow children to benefit from their time in the centre.

Parents/whānau value the care their children receive. Teachers respond positively to suggestions made by parents and invite them to centre events. Children's transition into, through and off to school are well managed. Teachers have developed some connections with local schools and intend to strengthen these relationships.

Review and revision of governance and management processes for the centre should be priorities for the year ahead. Policies and procedures to guide practice need updating to match the expectations of the licensing criteria, the Vulnerable Children's Act and new health and safety requirements. Appraisal processes need to be streamlined and improved to build teacher capability and capacity. The philosophy for the centre is due for review. Using Te Tiriti o Waitangi, and the revised Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, as guiding documents for this review would be beneficial.

There is a need for more professional learning opportunities to support centre leaders to increase their capacity to lead centre developments.

Key Next Steps

Centre managers agree that key next steps for leaders and teachers are to:

  • strengthen appraisal processes by providing regular discussion times, observations and written feedback during the year

  • engage in professional development to strengthen assessment, planning and evaluation processes

  • continue strengthening bicultural practices

  • grow the capability of centre leadership to lead a professional teaching team and centre developments.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Kingdom Kidz 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.

In order to improve practices teachers should ensure items stored high are secured, risk assessment management is detailed, and supervision ratios are appropriate for excursions close to water.

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services Northern

Northern Region

28 February 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

Ngunguru, Whangarei

Ministry of Education profile number

10415

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

50 children, including up to 15 aged under 2

Service roll

72

Gender composition

Girls 40 Boys 32

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
other ethnic groups

17
52
3

Percentage of qualified teachers

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:4

Better than minimum requirements

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

January 2019

Date of this report

28 February 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

April 2015

Education Review

March 2012

Education Review

March 2009

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.