Paddingtons Early Childhood Centre - 20/06/2014

1 Evaluation of Paddingtons Early Childhood Centre

How well placed is Paddingtons Early Childhood Centre to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Well placed with some areas for improvement.

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


Paddington’s Early Childhood Centre is one of three privately owned Paddington centres located in Hamilton. It provides all-day early childhood education and care for children from two years to school age. The adjacent Paddington’s centre caters for infants and toddlers up to two years of age. Of the 53 children currently attending the centre, 15 are of Māori descent and many have whakapapa links to Tainui.

The centre owners have delegated the responsibility for ensuring that the three centres meet licensing requirements to a private management company. This company provides policies, frameworks and documentation to guide centre practice. The centre benefits from financial and administrative personnel to support operations. A centre service manager visits the centre regularly to monitor compliance and offer guidance and support to staff.

The teaching team is made up of recently qualified and experienced teachers. The supervisor has been in her role for many years and maintains positive relationships with the two other Paddington’s centres in Hamilton.

Teachers have attended relevant professional learning and made good progress in addressing the areas for development identified in the 2011 ERO report. These related to the place of routines in the programme, managing children’s behaviour and the use of te reo Māori throughout the programme.

The recently reviewed philosophy, developed in consultation with families and staff, aims to provide a rich curriculum, respect for the cultures of families attending the centre and learning in the natural world.

There is a need to continue to strengthen the staff appraisal process.

The Review Findings

There are positive professional partnerships amongst the supervisors of the three Paddington’s centres. The knowledgeable and dedicated centre supervisor continues to provide strong, leadership and professional support for the service. She makes good use of planned self review for ongoing strategic development and improvement. Through her leadership, positive and transparent relationships with stakeholders at all levels of centre organisation are evident.

The supervisor actively fosters leadership amongst teachers and children. A particular strength is her enthusiasm for promoting the creative arts and imaginative play. She is a skilled teacher who models good practice and holds high expectations for children’s success in their learning.

Teachers participate enthusiastically in regular and ongoing opportunities for professional development, linked to strategic and appraisal goals. They are collegial and reflective practitioners and make effective use of their strengths and knowledge to enhance the programme for children. The teaching team is enthusiastic and committed to facilitating children’s learning and progress. Evidence of this includes:

  • intentional planning and teaching to build on children’s strengths and interests
  • upgrading of the centre environment and resources in partnership with families and children
  • a culture of collaborative sharing of research, skills and knowledge.

An important next step is for the service to continue to strengthen the appraisal process to ensure teachers and supervisors receive regular and robust feedback and feed forward about their practice.

Children experience an interesting and varied curriculum that is well designed to develop them as capable and confident learners. They enjoy holistic learning opportunities that integrate literacy, mathematics, science and bicultural learning in meaningful ways. ERO observed children’s delight as they explored and adventured together. A feature of this programme is the high level of children’s confidence and ability to express themselves through the arts. Children up to three years of age are confident communicators and explore alongside their older peers. Older children use their skills to design and complete long term projects, often involving child-directed research and the use of technology. Transitions are well planned and managed at children’s own pace as they move into the centre and on to school. Parent ideas and contributions enrich the programme.

Māori children achieve success as Māori by hearing te reo Māori used meaningfully, sharing waiata and karakia and the integration of appropriate tikanga practices. They share in favourite stories from their culture, their iwi connections are acknowledged and they celebrate Matariki with whānau in the centre. Teachers recognise the leadership of a competent Māori teacher in her role to develop teacher expertise. They also attend professional development to build their understanding of Te Ao Māori. The presence of other cultures is evident and adds vibrancy to the centre programme and environment.

Teachers need to review the ready access children have to their individual profile books. This will enable them to share and revisit learning. In addition they need to access a wider range of manipulative equipment and tools and materials for building and construction.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Paddingtons Early Childhood Centre 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 Paddingtons Early Childhood Centre will be in three years.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

20 June 2014

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

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

43 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 27

Girls 26

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā









Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

March 2014

Date of this report

20 June 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

February 2011


Education Review

March 2008


Education Review

June 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 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.