Mangere Bridge Kindergarten - 20/09/2017

1 Evaluation of Mangere Bridge Kindergarten

How well placed is Mangere Bridge Kindergarten 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

Mangere Bridge Kindergarten is licensed to provide education and care for up to 40 children aged over two years. Children enrolled attend full kindergarten day sessions of 8.30am to 2.30pm. Cultural diversity in the local community continues to increase. Māori children make up 15 percent of the roll and 25 percent have Pacific heritage.

The team of four qualified teachers is supported by teaching and administrative assistants. Two of the teachers have been in the kindergarten for some years and two are more recent appointments.

The kindergarten's teaching philosophy prioritises strong partnerships between teachers, children, whānau and the community. Teachers value a play-based programme that includes challenge and risk taking. The kindergarten is inclusive of all children and their families, and is committed to supporting children's languages and cultural identities. Recognition of the Treaty of Waitangi and a commitment to ongoing development of their bicultural practice is important to the team.

The 2013 ERO report noted many aspects of good practice. These included a high quality programme where learning in literacy, numeracy, science and information technologies were well integrated. A stimulating environment allowed children to explore and pursue emerging interests through their play. Good support for transition to school was an integral part of teachers' practice.

In 2013 teachers identified transition-to-school practices and partnerships with the community as areas for ongoing consideration. They also identified the need to reflect children's language, culture and identity in their assessment portfolios. The team has made a significant contribution to national early childhood education research and professional learning, and in 2015 won the Prime Minister's award for their work.

The kindergarten is part of the Auckland Kindergarten Association (AKA), which provides a governance and management framework. Professional support personnel assist teachers with curriculum, management and property matters.

This review was part of a cluster of 11 reviews in the Auckland Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Children settle well into the kindergarten environment, choosing to play in small groups or individually. Friendships are evident. Children have a sense of ownership of this space and quickly engage with the wide variety of experiences offered.

Teachers' interactions with children are warm and respectful. They listen well to children's questions and conversations, and provide them with meaningful opportunities to engage with print. Teachers are aware of children's strengths and interests.

The carefully considered layout of the outdoor area provides children with numerous opportunities for appropriate risk taking and challenge. Teachers encourage children to be creative and expressive through providing a good range of materials and space. Teachers support children to develop a positive sense of self and promote children's perception of themselves as being competent and capable learners.

Parents who spoke with ERO expressed appreciation for the teachers, the environment and how well their children were engaged in the programme. They enjoyed the community focus and the work that teachers had been engaged in relating to successfully transitioning children to school.

Children's portfolios of learning contain individual and group learning stories that record learning outcomes that result from their participation in the programme and their weekly trips to a farm. Teachers could now consider ways to expand records of individual children's learning during group experiences, and to document the teachers' role in bringing complexity to children's self-directed learning.

Teachers have a commitment to the ongoing development of their bicultural practices. Teachers continue to build their confidence in speaking te reo Māori throughout the daily programme, to better reflect the bicultural approaches underpinning the curriculum.

Teachers regularly reflect on provision for children's learning, align their work with Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, and identify learning outcomes for children. They have an ongoing commitment to contributing to research and development in early childhood education.

Kindergarten operations are guided by a comprehensive strategic plan and a shared vision which are linked to the AKA’s strategic goals. A Quality Improvement Process (QIP) also aligns with AKA and kindergarten strategic plans. It enables the AKA and teachers to monitor quality and promote ongoing improvement. The AKA continues to review its management and leadership structure. It has begun a process of internal evaluation to establish how effectively the four pillars of its strategic plan are resulting in more positive outcomes for children, their families, and the organisation.

Key Next Steps

In order to enhance their current good quality provision for children, teachers should:

  • clearly document and evaluate the effectiveness of their planned teaching responses to children's individual interests and developing learning dispositions
  • improve records of regular evaluative thinking and continue to strengthen internal evaluation with a focus on teaching practice and its impact on children's learning.

It would be worthwhile for the teaching team to consider ways to apply aspects of their research discipline to the regular evaluation of their teaching strategies and approaches. In particular, the team should reflect on the usefulness of robust documentation of the less formal but highly valued aspects of their professional reflection and planning.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Mangere Bridge Kindergarten 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 Mangere Bridge Kindergarten will be in four years.

Violet Tu’uga Stevenson
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

20 September 2017 

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

Mangere Bridge, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

5067

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children aged over two years of age

Service roll

60

Gender composition

Boys 31, Girls 29

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Samoan
Tongan
Chinese
Cook Island Māori
Fijian
Indian
Niuean
South East Asian
other

  9
28
  5
  4
  2
  2
  2
  2
  2
  2
  2

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49%       50-79%       80%

Based on funding rates

80%

 

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

July 2017

Date of this report

20 September 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

August 2013

Education Review

May 2010

Education Review

February 2007

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.