Lollipops Educare Auckland Central - 08/11/2018

1 Evaluation of Lollipops Educare Auckland Central

How well placed is Lollipops Educare Auckland Central 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.


Lollipops Educare Auckland Central in the inner city, offers full-day care and education for up to 145 children, including 50 under two years of age. Families are culturally diverse. Most children, families and teachers speak more than one language.

The centre is situated on the fifth level of an inner city building. Children are accommodated in five age-related groups in adjoining rooms. Each room has a separate outdoor area that children can access most of the time.

The centre manager is supported by an assistant manager and leads a culturally diverse team of qualified and unqualified teachers who share the centre's vision.

The centre's philosophy acknowledges children as confident and competent learners. It promotes partnerships with family and community and celebrates their cultural diversity. Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, is acknowledged as a guiding document.

Managers and teachers have responded positively to ERO's 2015 report. They have strengthened practices, including increasing the focus on the teacher's role in the programme.

The centre is owned by the Evolve Education Group. Evolve provides an overarching governance and management framework and visiting personnel to support the operation of each centre. A recent re-branding of centres has occurred, with a view to building a greater sense of unity across the organisation. Initiatives that have been recently introduced are intended to improve staff stability in centres, promote effective internal evaluation and lift the quality of teaching practices.

This review was part of a cluster of a cluster of eight reviews in the Evolve Education Group.

The Review Findings

Children experience trusting, nurturing relationships. They play and learn in carefully considered and attractive environments.

The following effective teaching practices promote positive learning outcomes for children:

  • teachers' respectful care and warm interactions foster infants' and toddlers' self-help skills, curiosity and language development.

  • children are encouraged to make their own choices in a play based programme

  • a variety of activities and experiences for older children include literacy, numeracy and science learning and excursions support and extend children's learning and their interests

  • teachers work collaboratively to provide a programme that is responsive to the interests of the children. Parents can access and contribute to children's assessments and share them with the wider family

  • children benefit from having teachers who understand their first language and have opportunities to connect to their cultures

  • teachers value their partnerships with parents and communicate with them in a variety of ways

  • carefully considered transitions support children as they move through the rooms.

Centre practices and the environment celebrate the bicultural heritage of Aotearoa New Zealand. Teachers are committed to integrating bicultural perspectives into the programme and strengthening their te reo Māori. They are continuing to improve their understanding about tikanga Māori and supporting Māori children's success.

Leaders and teachers have a strong focus on continual improvement. They have built a team culture of ongoing improvement and openness to learning. Professional learning programmes and internal evaluation have impacted positively on the programme and outcomes for children. Focusing evaluative questions on teaching practice and outcomes for children should provide a more strategic focus.

The centre is managed effectively. Annual centre audits established by Evolve help to ensure legal requirements regarding policies, procedures and curriculum are being met. Centre leaders and teachers have established a strategic plan to guide the centre's development.

Key Next Steps

Centre leaders agree that their next key steps should include:

  • continuing to develop opportunities for child-led learning that recognise their prior knowledge

  • strengthening programme evaluation to focus more clearly on children's learning outcomes

  • building teachers' knowledge and capability in te reo and the integration of tikanga Māori

  • improving the depth of evaluation to focus on the effectiveness of teaching practices and impact on learning outcomes for children.

Evolve Education Group managers agree that key next steps include:

  • ensuring the company’s vision, values, philosophy, goals and systems reflect the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi

  • developing clear strategic goals to inform improvement focused annual plans at regional, area and centre levels, that include Te Whāriki 2017 and a strategy for supporting Pacific children and families

  • ongoing moderation and monitoring of the roles and responsibilities of personnel in positions of leadership, including centre managers

  • ongoing monitoring of appraisal practices to ensure effective implementation is lifting teaching practice

  • reviewing how effectively levels of resourcing in centres support children’s learning.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Lollipops Educare Auckland Central 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 Lollipops Educare Auckland Central will be in three years.

Violet Tu’uga Stevenson

Director Review and Improvement Services

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

8 November 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


Auckland CBD

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

145 children, including up to 50 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 67 Girls 66

Ethnic composition

Middle Eastern
Southeast Asian
other Asian
other ethnic groups


Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

August 2018

Date of this report

8 November 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

June 2015

Education Review

March 2012

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.