North Kidz 2 - 05/05/2017

1 Evaluation of North Kidz 2

How well placed is North Kidz 2 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

North Kidz was purchased by an Auckland based company, Potential Plus Education in 2015. North Kidz 2 operates in conjunction with the company's other network North Kidz 1. Both networks provide a service for families in the Whangarei and Dargaville areas. They are each licensed for up to 50 children. Children and educators from both networks frequently come together as a group for trips in the community. They can attend the weekly playgroup sessions held at the North Kidz office, and the fortnightly sessions in Dargaville.

North Kidz 2 is licensed as a standard service because the educators have no formal early childhood training. The educators have been with the service for many years. There are currently 11 children enrolled in this service, including nine Māori.

The coordinator for network 2 is an experienced, qualified early childhood teacher and has been with North Kidz for four years. She works collaboratively with the coordinator of North Kidz 1 to manage the daily operation of the service, maintain relationships with families and lead the playgroup.

The company directors and coordinators are committed to the service philosophy, which aims to provide high quality education and care for each child. They use Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, to guide their practices and underpin the programmes provided by educators.

The Review Findings

North Kidz 2 is characterised by caring, respectful and sincere relationships between coordinators, educators, children and families. Programme documentation records playful interactions between children and coordinators in educators’ homes and appreciative comments from families. They indicate meaningful partnerships between the service and families that are focused on positive outcomes for children. Coordinators and educators know the children very well.

Records show that children are settled and have a sense of wellbeing and belonging with the educators. Learning stories indicate that children are enthusiastic, confident and eager to engage in play. They know about making choices and participate in meaningful activities. Children have friendly relationships and are familiar with other educators and coordinators. Coordinators could now further develop educators' understanding of complex play and ways to challenge children’s thinking.

The coordinators use the playgroup to model teaching strategies for educators. They use effective strategies to support children's exploration of resources, and have expectations that children will attempt challenging tasks. Coordinators are aware of the need to ensure children make a smooth transition to school. They have begun working with educators to deliberately focus on self-help and group skills that will assist children with this transition.

Educators in the standard network are experienced. They notice and respond to children's interests well and are becoming skilled in writing learning stories about children's play. Educators could now reflect parents’ aspirations and their own roles in play, as part of the learning stories. This would be beneficial to inform the planning and evaluation of programmes.

The coordinator regularly visits educators and supports them in their homes. She leads a curriculum that is responsive to children's different learning interests. Educators and the coordinator plan collaboratively for each child and for monthly programmes. They are encouraged to share learning digitally and involve parents in the planning. While educators appreciate the coordinator’s support, further constructive feedback and guidance about more specific goals for children's learning and would support educators' ongoing development.

Bicultural practice is promoted by coordinators in the playgroup sessions. A strategic plan with measurable outcomes and goals for bicultural practice is in place. The service's philosophy, vision, and values statements align to this plan to support the development of bicultural practice. Pacific Island language weeks are celebrated. Using the Pasifika Education Plan should support programmes for Pacific learners.

The directors have responded positively to recommendations for more specific leadership and clarity in decision making for coordinators and the administrator. They have a commitment to providing a high quality service. Coordinators keep good records of information about each child, administration, and health and safety practices. They recognise that they can continue to improve their work in coaching, mentoring and monitoring educators. It may be helpful for coordinators to identify and use indicators of best practice to support improvements.

Key Next Steps

Managers agree that the next steps for service development include:

  • formalising the evaluation of programmes in educators' homes and playgroup sessions

  • refining and improving coordinators’ and educators’ appraisal processes

  • ensuring there is a professional development programme for coordinators, that is linked to their appraisal goals

  • maintaining better evidence of the coordinators’ communication and consultation with parents

  • ensuring that the policy review cycle is kept up to date. 

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of North Kidz 2 completed an ERO Home-based Education and Care 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 North Kidz 2 will be in three years.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

5 May 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 Home-based Education and Care Service 

Location

Whangarei

Ministry of Education profile number

10389

Institution type

Homebased Network

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

50 children, including up to 40 aged under 2

Service roll

11

Standard or Quality Funded

Standard

Gender composition

Boys 8 Girls 3

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

9

2

Number of qualified coordinators in the network

1

Required ratios of staff educators to children

Under 2

1:2

Over 2

1:4

Review team on site

February 2017

Date of this report

5 May 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

 

Education Review

September 2013

Education Review

March 2009

Education Review

December 2005

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 the draft methodology for ERO reviews in Home-based Education and Care Services: July 2014

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.