Oasis Family Preschool - 19/02/2019

1 Evaluation of Oasis Family Preschool

How well placed is Oasis Family Preschool to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Oasis Family Preschool is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Oasis Family Preschool is one of four centres owned and managed by Oasis Preschools. The service's vision is to empower and support children on life's journey as individuals and is based on Christian values. Three of the centres are based in Motueka and are in close proximity to each other. They cater for different ages of children, who transition from one centre to the next as they grow older. Oasis Family Preschool provides education and care for up to 30 children aged from two to approximately three and a half years old.

Since the May 2017 ERO review there have been changes in the team leader and some staff. The majority of staff are fully qualified early childhood teachers. The service uses regular relieving staff to provide consistency and familiarity for children's wellbeing and learning.

The service has an overarching management team which oversees management responsibilities and provides advice and support to each individual centre. A team leader is responsible for the day to day operation of the centre.

The May 2017 ERO report identified a need to improve management and evaluation systems. The roles and responsibilities of the managers have been reviewed, clarified and strengthened. The managers and teaching team have made significant progress in addressing the areas identified in that report.

This review was part of a cluster of four reviews in the Oasis Preschools.

The Review Findings

Managers have worked with teachers to clearly identify and document the priorities for children's learning across their service. These priorities promote children to be great communicators, respectful and caring, confident learners, and proud of their identity. Teachers at the centre have also identified priorities specific for the particular needs, strengths and abilities of children who attend this centre. This includes promoting independence and self-management skills. The priorities that teachers have identified for individual and group learning are well enacted in the curriculum, planning and centre documentation.

Children experience a curriculum where:

  • teachers are intentional in the ways they build respectful relationships and interact with individual children to support their wellbeing and extend their learning 
  • teachers purposefully set up the environment and resources to respond to children's interests, strengths and abilities
  • routines are well paced to respond to children's preferences, provide them with opportunities to make choices and develop self-help skills and increasing independence
  • there is a flexible and personalised approach to supporting children and their families as they transition into and out of the centre.

Teachers value and actively seek parents' aspirations and perspectives about their children's learning. They make good use of this information to inform aspects of assessment, planning and evaluation.

Managers have significantly increased the understanding and use of systems for evaluation to ensure accountability across all aspects of the service and centre's practices. A useful and robust evaluation framework is supporting leaders and teachers to focus more on outcomes for children. Managers and teachers now more systematically pose questions about the quality of their practices, gather evidence and make sense of this evidence to improve teaching and learning. This is supporting deeper levels of reflective practice and building an improvement-focused culture.

Managers and teachers now reliably know the next steps to improve teaching and learning and have sufficient planning in place to address these.

Recent internal evaluations have led to:

  • strengthened assessment and planning practices, with a greater focus on intentional teaching and learning in assessment, planning and evaluation
  • teachers increasing their use of te reo Māori in the daily programme and strengthening the bicultural curriculum.

Service managers have successfully supported emergent leadership and built capability through:

  • well targeted internal and external professional learning and development and useful coaching
  • strategic use of teacher strengths
  • promoting greater collaboration between teachers within the centre, between centres, and with the management team.

Since the May 2017 ERO review, managers have developed a more comprehensive appraisal system. Teachers are taking collaborative approaches to supporting the development of their teaching practices and engage in regular discussions about professional teaching standards. There is obvious alignment between appraisal and other systems that focus on improving outcomes for children.

Key Next Steps

The overall Oasis Preschools service, and Oasis Family Preschool, have made considerable changes to systems and practices in a short period of time to improve outcomes for children. They are still working on consistently embedding some aspects of these changes.

ERO, the managers and centre leader agree that the key next steps for the centre and service are to continue to strengthen:

  • aspects of planning and assessment
  • aspects of appraisal practices
  • the visibility of the service's recently identified priorities for children's learning in planning and evaluation practices
  • the strategic plan so that it becomes a more useful and used document for guiding and supporting service improvement
  • managers' and teachers' knowledge and use of ways to support Māori children's success as Māori.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Oasis Family Preschool 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 Oasis Family Preschool will be in three years.

Alan Wynyard
Director Review and Improvement Services
Southern Region

19 February 2019

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

Motueka

Ministry of Education profile number

45147

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll

29

Gender composition

Boys 13 ; Girls 16

Ethnic composition

Māori
Pākehā
Other ethnicities

  6
19
  4

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49%       50-79%       80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:7

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

December 2018

Date of this report

19 February 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

May 2017

Education Review

May 2014

Education Review

May 2011

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.