Lollipops Educare Hastings - 27/04/2016

1 Evaluation of Lollipops Educare Hastings

How well placed is Lollipops Educare Hastings 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.

Background

Lollipops Educare Hastings is licensed to provide all day education and care for 100 children, including 36 up to two years of age. The centre is made up of four areas to cater for the different age groups.

Since the February 2013 ERO report, there has been a change of ownership, a new centre director appointed in 2016 and some new team leaders. The centre is owned and operated under the umbrella of the national early childhood organisation, Evolve Education Group. The organisation provides personnel, finance, marketing and policy development support. Governance roles and responsibilities are clear. The centre's business plans are directly linked to Evolve's strategic and operational plans. Locally, an area manager provides support to the centre linked to centre or regional goals.

This review was part of a cluster of two reviews in the Lollipops Educare Centres.

The Review Findings

Teachers know children and their whānau well. Children, parents and whānau are warmly welcomed. Responsive and respectful relationships are formed with each family.

The guiding philosophy, evident in practice, is based on fostering relationships with children and their whānau and assisting them to lead their own learning. Teachers guide, encourage and give help when it is needed.

Children benefit from a calm and unhurried environment, flexible learning spaces and a wide range of resources. These encourage curiosity, inquiry and exploration both inside and outside the centre. Teachers and children are partners in learning.

Quiet learning areas cater for infants up to two years of age and their specific needs and interests. A key teacher model promotes children's sense of belonging, security and wellbeing. Individual needs are supported by nurturing surroundings and responsive programme planning.

Children with special educational needs are well-catered for. Teachers have attended professional learning and development (PLD) and work with external agencies to provide appropriate teaching and learning experiences. An inclusive environment is evident.

Pacific culture is represented through learning experiences and natural resources. Teachers with expertise encourage and help build skills, knowledge and use of Pacific language.

Children experience a curriculum responsive to their interests, dispositions and developmental milestones. It is based on Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum. Teachers notice children's interests and provide opportunities through conversations, resources and activities. Children are encouraged to take risks and problem solve. They play independently and collaboratively in groups.

As a result of recent PLD, teachers have improved the way they notice children's interests. A newly implemented online assessment tool promotes home and centre links to support children learning. A next step is to strengthen the way teachers respond to children's learning, through deliberate teaching, planning and assessment to ensure consistency of practice across the centre.

There is a centre-wide focus on active movement which focuses on providing activities for children to develop their physical skills. This includes regular excursions to the local park. A recent review has informed an increased awareness of food and nutrition. As a result the menu has changed to better support healthy eating.

Resources that affirm Māori children’s cultural identity are visible and accessed by them. Teachers have accessed whānau expertise to build their knowledge of te ao Māori. The importance of kanohi ki te kanohi (face-to-face) conversations with whānau is acknowledged. Staff have identified the need to strengthen the integration of Māori language, culture and identity, including ways of teaching that reflect and respond to Māori learners. Seeking iwi aspirations and using the Ministry of Education documents Tātaiako: Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori Learners andKa Hikitia - Accelerating Success 2013-2017 should further assist this development.

Successful transitions into and within the centre are well-considered in response to children's individual needs. A planned programme where children can experience school life has been developed with a local school.

Team leaders, teachers and the centre director work collaboratively. Teachers regularly reflect and share information. Leadership opportunities are promoted. There are clear governance roles and responsibilities.

An appraisal system, including a mentoring programme for provisionally registered teachers, is in place to guide goal setting, PLD and teacher professional growth. However, the implementation and documentation of this process requires improvement to ensure sufficient evidence supports the issue and renewal of teachers' practising certificates.

There is a useful process to guide self review. Teachers complete regular curriculum reviews to inform changes. Teachers should continue to strengthen their internal evaluation to better determine the impact of changes and developments over time.

Key Next Steps

ERO and the centre leaders agree that the key next steps for teachers are to:

strengthen assessment and planning practices

  • continue to build teachers' knowledge and understanding of Māori culture, language and identity

  • improve the implementation of the appraisal process, including the induction and mentoring programme for provisionally registered teachers

  • strengthen internal evaluation.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Lollipops Educare Hastings 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.

During the review ERO identified the following areas of non-compliance.

Annual performance appraisal of all teachers were not sufficiently undertaken and one teacher does not hold a current practising certificate. Personnel management requires development.

The service provider must ensure:

  • annual performance appraisals of all teachers are undertaken[s77C State Sector Act 1998]

  • all teaching staff employed have a current practising certificate.[Section 120A(2) Education Act 1989]

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Lollipops Educare Hastings will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

27 April 2016

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

Hastings

Ministry of Education profile number

55517

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

100 children, including up to 36 aged under 2

Service roll

112

Gender composition

Girls 57, Boys 55

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Pacific

28

72

12

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:5

Meets minimum requirements

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

March 2016

Date of this report

27 April 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

February 2013

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.