Mangere West Kindergarten - 19/11/2015

1 Evaluation of Mangere West Kindergarten

How well placed is Mangere West 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 West Kindergarten, previously known as Idlewild Kindergarten, is located near Mangere township. Since the 2012 ERO review, they have changed from a sessional service to a Kindergarten Day Model (KDM). This now enables children to attend sessions similar to school hours. Teachers and the community are highly supportive of this model.

The kindergarten provides for up to 40 children over two years of age. It is staffed by a head teacher, two other registered teachers, a part time teacher, a teacher aide and an administrator. Staff work closely with a number of support agencies to provide a wrap around service for children in the diverse community.

Developing whanaungatanga in this predominantly Māori and Pacific community underpins all kindergarten practices. Children learning through play and a commitment to inclusion are integral to the kindergarten’s philosophy. Bicultural practices and children’s wellbeing and cultural identity are key features of the kindergarten.

Since the 2012 ERO review, teachers have improved the depth of self review by developing a robust process for research and reflection. Teachers have continued to strengthen teaching and learning strategies to improve educational outcomes for children. Professional development has supported them in increasing challenge in learning for children.

The kindergarten is part of the Auckland Kindergarten Association, which provides considered leadership, a management framework, support personnel and a programme of professional development for teachers.

In 2015, after extensive review and consultation, the Association launched a new 10 year strategic plan with four key strategic objectives. The Association’s approach to rolling out a substantial change in its organisational structure has been carefully considered.

New Association roles have been established to provide more targeted support for kindergartens. Professional development supports kindergarten head teachers in their leadership and management roles. A Quality Improvement Process (QIP) is being implemented to monitor quality in kindergartens and contribute to self review and ongoing improvement.

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

The Review Findings

Children have a strong sense of belonging at the kindergarten. They are valued as capable and confident learners and are well engaged as active participants in their own learning. Children experience a sense of success at the centre. They are developing social competence and set their own goals. Children make independent choices and are encouraged to persevere, problem solve and take risks.

Children learn in a vibrant and welcoming environment. The environment is well resourced, carefully organised and proudly reflects the diverse cultures of the children. Te Reo and tikanga Māori are valued and promoted in the kindergarten. Resources, displays and equipment support children’s languages, cultural backgrounds and identity. Play experiences affirm and build on children’s prior knowledge and invite children to build on what they already know. The outdoor area provides many opportunities to explore, learn about natural science, be creative and problem solve. Self review has impacted positively on how teachers create a child focused environment.

The curriculum is rich and responsive to children’s interests, strengths and culture. Curriculum planning is linked to important guiding documents. It incorporates the centre’s philosophy and parents’ aspirations. The curriculum has a wide focus on the different learning areas including science, literacy, mathematics, technology, and environmental sustainability.

Teachers think deeply about their practice and work collaboratively. They reflect the diversity of the community, are culturally responsive and highly inclusive. They promote children’s first languages and provide very good support for children’s developing oral language. Teachers’ strong sense of social justice is evident in the way they work with outside agencies to support children with diverse needs. Teachers are committed to ongoing improvement and building a culture of inquiry and reflection.

Parents/whānau speak highly of the kindergarten and the teachers. They feel welcomed and their input is valued. Parents’ strengths and knowledge are utilised and many parents offer their skills to enhance the programme for children. They have many opportunities to give feedback. Their aspirations are recorded and will be included in the new annual plan. E-portfolios have increased ways for parents to contribute. Parents are well informed about the operations of the kindergarten.

Hard copies of portfolios are valued and often revisited by children, teachers and parents. A recent review has enriched the way teachers provide for children’s diverse language needs, including the use of New Zealand sign language to support better communication.

The kindergarten is managed and led effectively by a strong professional leader. She works collaboratively with her team and teachers are given opportunities to develop their strengths and interests. She is well supported by the Association, particularly in the area of building leadership capability.

Teachers inquire deeply into theory and research and implement relevant changes to their practice. This research review is aligned with strategic planning.

Association systems for monitoring and promoting improvement in kindergarten operations are well established. Self review in this kindergarten is highly developed and contributes to positive outcomes for children. The Association has a strong commitment to biculturalism and in embracing diversity. Resources and personnel have been targeted to ensure that the specific needs of children and their families are met.

Key Next Steps

The teaching team and the Association’s Education Specialist have identified appropriate priorities for ongoing development. These include continuing to evaluate how effectively teachers:

  • use whānau knowledge to enhance the programme for children
  • strengthen children’s language, culture and identity.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern 

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, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

5059

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll

39

Gender composition

Boys 21 Girls 18

Ethnic composition

Māori

Samoan

Cook Island Māori

Tongan

other

7

15

11

4

2

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

September 2015

Date of this report

19 November 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)

 

Previously reviewed as:

Idlewild Kindergarten

Education Review

November 2012

Education Review

January 2010

Education Review

October 2006

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.

ERO has also published an exemplar report on Mangare West Kindergarten: Exemplar Review - Mangere West Kindergarten - June 2018