Papatoetoe North Kindergarten - 21/06/2018

1 Evaluation of Papatoetoe North Kindergarten

How well placed is Papatoetoe North 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.


Papatoetoe North Kindergarten is located on the border of Mangere East and Papatoetoe North and was previously known as Kotiri Kindergarten. The kindergarten serves a multicultural community, with predominately Māori and Pacific families, and is licensed for up to 40 children over two years of age. It is open for full days and school term breaks, as well as shorter sessions to meet the requirements of the community.

The teaching team is culturally diverse and includes four registered teachers, one of whom is the head teacher. There is also a part-time teacher, an administrator and a teacher aide. At the time of this review, there were two relieving teachers as a permanent teacher was yet to be appointed.

The philosophy is founded on Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, and incorporates aspects of tikanga Māori. Key features of the philosophy include children learning through their play experiences and valuing families' cultural identities and languages.

The kindergarten is part of the Auckland Kindergarten Association (AKA). The AKA has a range of specialist personnel who assist teachers with curriculum, management and property matters. There continues to be a period of change for staff as they adapt to changes in AKA’s operational practices, leadership and management.

Since the 2014 ERO review, there have been staff changes, a new head teacher appointed in 2018, and an increase in operating hours. The kindergarten was relocated to a temporary site in 2016 while the building was demolished and rebuilt. It has been operating in the new premises since July 2017. The AKA has introduced initiatives to encourage families to enrol and there are now more two-year-olds attending the kindergarten.

ERO’s 2014 report recognised that children were settled and well supported by teachers. Children’s sense of wellbeing and belonging continues to be promoted. In 2014 teachers agreed they could strengthen self-review, planning approaches, and promote more complexity of play. They have engaged in professional development and benefitted from targeted AKA support as they managed change, enriched their teaching practice and focused on making learning visible in documentation.

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

The Review Findings

Children play and learn in a culturally rich, well-resourced environment where teachers value child-led learning and children's knowledge and strengths. Children are eager to learn, join in conversations, and engage in sustained play. They make choices and decisions, and problem-solve as they explore. Children’s creativity and curiosity are affirmed, as is their ability to lead and join in group activities and imaginative play. The outside area enables them to be physically active and develop an understanding of the natural world.

Mutually respectful relationships with children, parents, whānau and the local community underpin teachers' interactions. The diverse backgrounds of the children are valued and celebrated. These are reflected in the programme, documentation, displays and encouragement for parent and whānau to be involved in the programme. Teachers nurture children’s social competence, cultural identity and positive attitudes to learning. Children show a strong sense of belonging in and ownership of the kindergarten environment.

Teachers plan and implement a child focused programme underpinned by Te Whāriki, their philosophy and parent aspirations. Individual planning reflects the child's interests and dispositions and teachers are increasingly linking these to group planning. Aspects of te ao Māori and the use of te reo Māori are woven through the programme and visible in documents. Children’s assessment portfolios are highly valued records of learning and development with many including child and whānau contributions. The use of electronic portfolios is increasing opportunities for parents and whānau to know about and contribute to their children’s learning.

Teachers actively encourage children to share ideas and discoveries. They support children to use literacy, mathematics, technologies, and science in relevant meaningful ways. They are exploring ways to strengthen children's school readiness and connections with local schools to better support children's transition to school.

Teachers benefit from and are appreciative of the strong wrap-around support from the AKA during changes to the teaching team and new premises. They have good opportunities to share strengths and skills and to grow their leadership capabilities. The head teacher has a strong focus on improving outcomes for all children and on developing an organisational culture of trust and respect. The teaching team is reviewing the philosophy and developing a shared vision. Teachers have a strong commitment to enhancing teaching and learning and continuing to strengthen bicultural practices.

The AKA has useful processes for supporting teachers' ongoing professional development and supporting teachers' interests. AKA has specific processes for ensuring that children with additional needs receive appropriate learning support. They have good systems in place to support children and whānau with health and wellbeing needs.

Kindergarten operations are guided by a comprehensive kindergarten plan and a shared vision that are linked to AKA strategic goals. A Quality Improvement Process (QIP) also aligns with AKA and kindergarten strategic plans. The AKA continues to review its management and leadership structure and to improve consistency and coherence across internal evaluation, quality assurance and improvement systems, and strategic planning.

Key Next Steps

The teaching team agrees that next steps for improvement include:

  • continuing to enrich their bicultural practices

  • more consistently documenting how children’s interests and dispositions are developed to a deeper level and how progress is evaluated over time

  • exploring ways for children to lead their own learning through more complex and challenging play

  • strengthening the documentation of internal evaluation to more clearly show teachers' evaluative thinking and outcomes for children and to guide kindergarten developments.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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

Julie Foley

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

21 June 2018

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


Mangere, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children over the age of 2 years

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 25 Boys 24

Ethnic composition

Cook Islands Māori
Southeast Asian


Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2018

Date of this report

21 June 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

November 2014

Education Review

July 2011

Education Review

May 2008

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.