Pasifika Early Learning - North Shore - 11/10/2018

1 Evaluation of Pasifika Early Learning - North Shore

How well placed is Pasifika Early Learning - North Shore 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.


Pasifika Early Learning - North Shore was originally established as Ta Fesilafai Aoga Amata (TAA), a community-based service with a philosophy of providing full immersion Samoan.

TAA had a varied ERO reporting history. In 2016, the Ministry of Education (MoE) placed the centre on a provisional licence, and provided ongoing professional development and support to improve the areas for development and non-compliance identified in ERO's 2016 report. The a'oga amata regained a full licence in March 2018.

In April 2018 Solve Education Ltd trading as Pasifika Early Learning, became the new service provider. The new service provider has taken on the roles of centre manager and chair of the governance board. They have been proactive in reviewing current practices and developing a long term strategic approach for ongoing improvement. The experience and knowledge of the contact person means that this service has a good platform for future development.

The board has employed a centre administrator and a support staff member from Solve Education Ltd. Staffing has been restructured and reduced to three long serving qualified teachers, including a supervisor. The licence has been modified, and the centre now provides education and care for a maximum of 31 children over two years of age.

The new board has made a number of changes. The service's philosophy has changed from providing a full immersion Samoan a'oga amata to providing a mainstream curriculum centre that promotes Pasifika culture, language and values. The new philosophy emphasises children experiencing a challenging and stimulating environment that encourages innovative play.

The management committee consists of some new members, including the service manager, and some prior TAA management committee members.

At the time of the ERO review, no documentation from the time of the previous management regime was available. As a result, key evidence such as teachers' appraisal documents and children's learning portfolios could not be evaluated by the ERO review team.

The Review Findings

The board and centre manager are in the early stages of establishing a culture that could lead to ongoing improvement. Staff are supportive of changes, but these are not yet embedded in practice. Leaders should consider how they can manage change to ensure continuity, quality processes and positive learning outcomes for children.

The manager and teachers should access ongoing external professional development. This should focus on helping them to implement effective teaching practices in order to fully realise the service's philosophy, vision and values. Staff should prioritise the active use of the service's new philosophy, and vision documents as part of implementing a programme that promotes Pasifika culture, language and values through Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.

There is a lack of evidence to show how teachers are noticing and responding to children's individual interests and learning dispositions. Children's learning portfolios are all new with entries only dating from May 2018. The manager and teachers need to deepen their knowledge and understanding of individual children to help them develop a responsive programme. It will be vital for them to take a supportive team approach so that they can build shared understandings about effective programme planning, assessment and evaluation.

Teachers should now improve their professional knowledge and teaching practices. A robust appraisal process coupled with skilled leadership and mentoring should support teachers to document the required improvements to their practice. A key improvement focus for teachers should be on how to intentionally support children to experience a challenging and stimulating learning environment that encourages innovative play.

Parents spoke to ERO about teachers' care for their children and the value of the TAA Samoan immersion context. Teachers relate well to families. Children are learning to play well with and alongside their peers. Leaders and teachers should now use external professional development to help them implement positive guidance and teaching strategies that develop children's social and emotional competencies. Teachers also need to improve the provision of education and care for children with additional learning needs.

The board, manager and teachers have improved health and safety practices. Resources have been well used to carry out maintenance and significantly upgrade the property. Systems have been established to improve the physical learning environment. Teachers are being supported to improve their vigilance around health and safety matters. The indoor and outdoor learning environments are clean, tidy and hygienic.

Teachers have improved the physical learning environment and their supervision of children's play. They have culled dated equipment, provided new resources, established discrete play areas and improved children's access to equipment.

The board and management committee have implemented a clear organisational structure and established a regular reporting and meeting schedule. No evidence of the TAA audited accounts was made available to ERO. The board and management committee have established a strategic and annual plan, comprehensive policy framework and processes for internal evaluation.

The manager has documented a development plan to address areas for improvement identified in ERO's 2016 report. These documents could be strengthened with a specific breakdown of indicators of effective practice and the inclusion of achievable timelines and identification of the person/s responsible for actions. The manager should rationalise and refine policies, and implement a cycle of policy review.

Good appraisal systems and processes have recently been established to support teachers to meet Education Council requirements. Teachers have yet to complete a full appraisal cycle that evidences these requirements.

Key Next Steps

ERO has identified the following priorities for management and staff to undertake in order to promote positive learning outcomes for children. They should:

  • establish a collaborative team approach to change and improvement

  • develop a shared understanding of the centre's philosophy

  • complete a robust annual cycle of appraisal that meets Education Council requirements for all teachers

  • implement an ongoing process of internal evaluation that helps the centre maintain and improve the quality of its education and care

  • rationalise and refine policies and implement an annual cycle of policy review.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Pasifika Early Learning - North Shore 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

Actions for compliance

To meet requirements, the service needs to improve its performance in the following areas. Managers should ensure that:

  • the service curriculum is informed by assessment, planning, and evaluation (documented and undocumented) that demonstrates an understanding of children’s learning, their interests, whānau, and life contexts

  • the service's curriculum and staff practices support children to develop social competence and understanding of appropriate behaviour through positive guidance

  • the practices of adults providing education and care demonstrate an understanding of children’s learning and development, and knowledge of relevant theories and practice in early childhood education

  • required documentation is made available, as appropriate, to parents and Government officials having right of entry to the service.

Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Centres 2008, C3, C4, C10, GMA12; Education Act 1989, s319B.

Development Plan Recommendation

ERO recommends that the service, in consultation with the Ministry of Education, develops a plan to address the key next steps and actions outlined in this report.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Pasifika Early Learning - North Shore will be within two years.

Violet Tu’uga Stevenson

Director Review and Improvement Services

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

11 October 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


Beach Haven, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

31 children over 2 years of age

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 17 Girls 11

Ethnic composition

other Ethnic Groups


Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

August 2018

Date of this report

11 October 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Previously known as

Ta Fesilafa'I Aoga Amata

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

October 2016

September 2013

March 2010

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.