Peppertree Preschool Ltd - 01/09/2016

1 Evaluation of Peppertree Preschool Ltd

How well placed is Peppertree Preschool Ltd to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Peppertree Preschool Ltd is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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


Peppertree Preschool Ltd is one of two Peppertree centres operating in Rangiora. This centre provides education and care for babies, toddlers and preschool children in three separate areas. Little Peppertree caters for children from two years old to school age. The centres share a similar philosophy and management structure. A review report has been written for each centre.

Nearly all staff are qualified early childhood teachers. Many of the teachers are experienced and have worked at the centre for a number of years. A curriculum leader has responsibility for the curriculum across the centres.

The leaders and teachers have made good progress towards meeting the recommendations in the 2013 ERO report. They have made effective use of professional development to improve self review, child assessment and the quality of teaching.

This review was part of a cluster of two early childhood centre reviews in the Peppertree Preschool Ltd.

The Review Findings

The centre provides a welcoming and inclusive environment for all children and their families. Children with diverse needs are well integrated into the programme and supported in their learning by teachers and experts from outside agencies.

Teachers actively promote the inclusion of te reo and tikanga Māori in the programme. Many children confidently say their mihi. Waiata are regularly sung and cultural events such as Matariki are celebrated and well attended by family and whānau.

Infants and toddlers in the nursery experience nurturing relationships with their teachers.  Home routines and practices are effectively integrated into the programme. Children enjoy varied and interesting experiences that include opportunities to sing and hear stories individually or in small groups.

Children have positive relationships with their teachers. Teachers make good use of their knowledge of each child to provide a wide range of activities and experiences that build on children's interests, knowledge and understandings.

The centre is well presented and resourced. Children spend the majority of their time in self-selected learning. During these times, many of the older children involve themselves in complex group play that extends their thinking, problem solving and social skills.

Managers and teachers make very good use of the wider local community to extend children's interests and learning. They are establishing useful processes in consultation with local schools to help children transition confidently from the centre to school.

Managers have put in place many useful systems and processes for long-term and the day-to-day operation of the centre. Strategic planning, self review, staff appraisal and professional development are closely aligned to support the achievement of the centre goals to continue to improve the quality of learning and teaching.

Managers and teachers have a strong focus on improvement and capacity building. They make effective use of professional development to build their practice and understanding in key identified areas. This is particularly evident in their shared understanding and use of self review and improved child assessment and programme planning. Staff appraisal processes have also been strengthened and staff receive useful feedback on their professional practices.

Key Next Steps

The leaders and ERO agreed, that the next key steps for the centre include:

  • embedding self review across all areas of centre operations
  • refining strategic planning
  • improving consistency in child assessment and planning
  • reviewing group times to ensure they meet the interests, abilities and needs of individual children
  • continuing to strengthen the integration of te ao Māori, particularly in key documents, child assessments and plans.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Peppertree Preschool Ltd 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 Peppertree Preschool Ltd will be in three years. 

Lesley Patterson
Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern

1 September 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 


Rangiora, North Canterbury

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

60 children, including up to 20 aged under two

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 46; Girls 38

Ethnic composition

Other ethnicities


Percentage of qualified teachers
0-49%       50-79%       80%
Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

August 2016

Date of this report

1 September 2016

Most recent ERO reports

Education Review

May 2013

Supplementary Review

March 2010

Education Review

March 2009

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.