Lollipops Educare Patten Street - 19/11/2013

Evaluation of Lollipops Educare Patten Street

How well placed is Lollipops Educare Patten Street to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Lollipops Educare Patten Street is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Lollipops Educare Patten Street provides full day education and care for children from birth to school age. The centre is one of two centres in Christchurch owned and operated by the Lollipops Educare organisation. The centre director was appointed since the January 2011 ERO review. She is a qualified early childhood teacher and she is responsible for the day-to-day functioning and administration of the centre.

The purpose-built centre is divided into five rooms where teachers provide for the different ages of the children attending. Each room has a combination of trained and untrained teachers. The staff bring a range of experiences and cultures to the programme. The programme is influenced by Te Whāriki, the New Zealand Early Childhood curriculum. Daily meals are provided for the children.

The centre is situated in an area where housing was severely affected by the Christchurch earthquakes. The roll is growing again. Many children have continued to attend the centre despite no longer living in the local area.

The Review Findings

Children spend time in stimulating play areas that are well presented, with a wide range of equipment and resources. Teachers in each room give careful consideration to how the environment is set up to be inviting for young babies, toddlers and young children. A very calm environment for the youngest babies is a feature of the centre.

The centre has a clear philosophy that was developed collaboratively with parents and teachers. Teachers have developed useful teaching visions for each room that guide their practice and approaches to teaching.

Teachers place emphasis on developing nurturing and caring relationships with babies, toddlers and young children. They know the children in their care well and use this information to respond to them, showing respect for children’s preferences. Teachers value partnerships with families and whānau. They share useful information with parents about what their children are interested and involved in at the centre.

All children, especially the babies and toddlers, are benefiting from the small group sizes in each room. Interactions between teachers and individual children are regular and in depth. Older children play well together. Younger children are encouraged to build positive relationships with others.

Children benefit from interactions with their teachers that:

  • help them work out how to solve problems

  • give them time to talk about and follow through on their ideas

  • support them to try things out for themselves

  • encourage them to experiment and explore the resources available in different and interesting ways.

The children have good opportunities within the programme to continue with their home routines, follow their interests, and contribute their ideas. Teachers also effectively support children’s literacy awareness and skills. The Lollipops organisation has provided useful and appropriate information to teachers and parents about how centre programmes support children as they move on to school.

Teachers respect and foster children’s cultural backgrounds within the programme. This includes building relationships with families so they feel comfortable to share aspects of their culture with staff and in the programme. Prominent wall displays reflect the range of cultures in the centre community.

Teachers carefully manage the process when children move from one room to the next (transitioning). They ensure children’s needs and sense of belonging and wellbeing are central to decision making.

The centre director has a good knowledge of the strengths and areas for development regarding the quality of teaching. She makes effective use of staff skills in the programme.

The centre director is effectively promoting a more shared approach to teaching and learning centre-wide through fostering teamwork and supporting teachers to reflect more on their practice.

The centre self-review practices have significantly improved since the 2011 ERO review. Teachers have recently been involved in professional development that has strengthened self review by:

  • increasing staff understanding of an effective process to follow

  • encouraging self-review practices that include the views of parents as well as teachers

  • increasing the use of evidence to inform decision making.

Key Next Steps

The centre has identified, and ERO agrees that, the next steps are to:

  • strengthen programme planning and assessment

  • review the centre’s transition to school programme to align it with the Lollipops Educare “Rising 5” programme and strengthen relationships with schools that the children move on to

  • embed the recent developments in self review, including revisiting outcomes to determine the impact of the changes over time

  • recognise and integrate Māori children’s culture more in the programme and assessment and develop clearer processes for seeking and responding to the cultural aspirations of Māori whānau.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Lollipops Educare Patten Street 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 practice, ERO recommends that managers ensure that:

  • the centre director and teachers strengthen the way they plan to manage hazards and risks during excursions

  • systems for ensuring all staff are police vetted before they begin working at the centre are followed.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

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

Graham Randell

National Manager Review Services Southern Region

19 November 2013

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

Avonside, Christchurch

Ministry of Education profile number

70157

Licence type

Education and Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

68 children, including up to 23 aged under 2

Service roll

86

Gender composition

Boys 48

Girls 38

Ethnic composition

Māori

NZ European/Pākehā

Pacific

Asian

Other ethnicities

11

62

5

2

6

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

50-79%

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

September 2013

Date of this report

19 November 2013

Most recent ERO reports

 

Education Review

January 2012

 

Education Review

November 2010

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.