Onekawa Kindergarten - 20/04/2016

1 Evaluation of Onekawa Kindergarten

How well placed is Onekawa 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.


Onekawa Kindergarten in Napier provides early childhood education and care for up to 44 children aged over two years. Morning sessions cater for three-year-olds and older children attend six-hour sessions. The current roll is 42, including five Māori children.

The kindergarten is part of the Napier Kindergarten Association, which oversees the operations of 16 kindergartens, including two based in Wairoa. A board of trustees oversees governance for the association with support of the general manager. Two education managers have a responsibility for building teacher capability. The newly appointed head teacher is providing well considered professional leadership at a time of staffing changes. A recently appointed Pou Whakarewa Mātauranga supports teachers to develop their knowledge and understanding of te ao Māori. He demonstrates a clear vision for Māori children and their whānau.

Since the September 2012 ERO report, there have been staffing changes. The head teacher was appointed at the beginning of Term 4 2015. Teachers in the current teaching team are long-term relievers from the association's pool. They have recently become permanently appointed to the kindergarten.

During a time of change, teachers have maintained a settled environment that promotes positive outcomes for children. The outdoor environment has recently been enhanced to provide for further physical activity and challenge. Teachers continue to promote education for sustainability as part of their Enviroschools programme.

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

The Review Findings

Children access a well-considered range of open-ended activities and resources that support and promote their interests and strengths. Subsequently, they settle quickly and engage in self-directed play. They access a good range of open-ended activities and resources that support and promote their interests and strengths. They are able to explore, investigate, be creative and engage in physical activity. Children and teachers enjoy learning and have fun. Strong friendships amongst children are evident.

After a new teaching team is confirmed, a review of the current philosophy in consultation with teachers, parents and whānau is planned. Building ongoing relationships with families and whānau provides a positive platform for future developments.

Systems and processes for assessment of children's learning and programme planning are being strengthened. Planning walls support teachers to monitor children's engagement in activities, respond to emerging interests and provide appropriate learning opportunities. Parents are invited to share their aspirations for their children, and foster their children's strengths and interests from home. Continuing to embed and refine assessment, planning and evaluation is an area for ongoing development.

Profiles are an attractive record of the children's engagement in a wide range of learning activities over time. Children enjoy revisiting and sharing their learning with others.

The curriculum provides opportunities for older children to develop knowledge and skills that support their transition to school. The head teacher is focused on renewing their already positive relationships with local schools. Teachers work effectively with parents of children with special education needs and relevant external agencies. Transitions to school are well planned and responsive.

Some teachers have engaged in professional learning and development which has increased their confidence, understanding and meaningful use of te reo Māori. Including te ao Māori in the kindergarten curriculum is an area for ongoing development.

The new head teacher, with support from the education managers has appropriately reviewed systems and processes to support a clear direction for the kindergarten. There has been a deliberate and planned approach to build teachers' knowledge, understanding of self review and how evaluation contributes to improved teaching and learning. Internal evaluation continues to be an area for development as the team builds shared understandings.

Teachers have recently set appraisal goals to reflect on their practice. Continuing to develop the appraisal process to support growth in teaching practices of a new teaching team is ongoing.

The association empowers teachers to use the team's strengths to respond to children and the parent community. Education managers continue to lead the implementation of systems and processes to effectively build teacher capability.

Key Next Steps

The head teacher, teachers and education managers should continue to:

  • strengthen assessment, planning and evaluation

  • develop responsiveness to Māori through the curriculum

  • develop self review and internal evaluation

  • strengthen the appraisal process to support growth in teaching practice.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Onekawa 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 Onekawa Kindergarten will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer


20 April 2016

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



Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

44 children aged over 2 years

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 25, Girls 17

Ethnic composition




Other ethnic groups





Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

February 2016

Date of this report

20 April 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

September 2012

Education Review

June 2009

Education Review

March 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.