Pirimai Kindergarten - 17/12/2015

1 Evaluation of Pirimai Kindergarten

How well placed is Pirimai 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. 


Pirimai Kindergarten in Napier provides early childhood education and care for up to 44 children aged over two. Morning sessions cater for three-year-olds and older children attend for six hours. The current roll is 47 children, including 15 Māori children.

The kindergarten is part of the Napier Kindergarten Association, which oversees the operation of 16 kindergartens including two based in Wairoa. A board of trustees oversees governance for the association and support for the general manager. Two educational managers are responsible for building teacher capability. The head teacher provides strong professional leadership to the teaching team. A recently appointed Pou Whakarewa Matauranga supports teachers to develop their knowledge and understanding of te ao Māori. He demonstrates a clear vision for Māori children and their whānau.

Strong relationships and parent, family and wider Napier community support are features of the kindergarten. A carefully planned and extensive kindergarten environment supports successful learning. The strengths identified in the September 2012 ERO report continue and progress. This includes improved individual learning opportunities, inclusive practice, self review and further embedding bicultural practices since joining Enviroschools.

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

The Review Findings

The kindergarten curriculum successfully responds to each child’s interests and learning needs. A greater emphasis on values-based education in the kindergarten philosophy reflects the wishes of children and their families. Children display caring, respectful and trusting relationships with staff and each other. They are empowered to self manage and lead their learning. 

Children are very well supported by teachers to make choices. Social and emotional competency is effectively promoted through close tracking and monitoring of children’s learning. Teaching strategies deliberately focus on extending individual interests and seamlessly meet identified needs. External expertise is used well. Weekly team meetings enable ongoing evaluation of the impact of teacher planning for each child. High expectations for teaching and learning are well informed by sound team research and collaborative thinking.

Well-integrated te ao Māori in the curriculum is further strengthened through participation in the
Enviroschool programme. Literacy, including oral language, mathematics and the arts remain strengths of the curriculum. Children enjoy a comprehensive range of resources that encourages them to explore and try new things. Skilful teaching contributes to sustained play and more effective learning opportunities.

The head teacher effectively leads assessment, planning and evaluation through robust systems and processes. Professional learning, ongoing monitoring and moderation of assessment of children’s learning supports teachers to increase each child’s learning over time. Positive learning partnerships with parents are further extended by sharing strategies with parents through different approaches. Te Whatu Pokekā: a kaupapa Māori framework for assessment is being carefully considered in relation to Māori children’s learning. Teachers collaborate, share good practice and are challenged to extend each child’s learning.

The head teacher’s professional leadership effectively grows teacher capability and encourages other head teachers in the association to share their expertise with each other. A comprehensive kindergarten strategic plan meaningfully guides operations and has a strong accountability focus on improving outcomes for all children. Appraisal is thorough and continues to develop. Teachers are clearly affirmed for their individual growth and actively encouraged to continue to improve their effectiveness.

Purposeful self-review practices lead to positive changes and improvements for children and their families. Children's and parents' views inform curriculum developments. Transitions to school are
well considered through sound relationships with a wide range of schools.

The association empowers teachers to use the team’s strengths to respond to children and the parent community. The head teacher is supported to lead the development of robust systems and processes to effectively build teacher capability and leadership. This includes self review, assessment, planning, evaluation and appraisal.

Key Next Steps

The key next step for kindergarten teachers and education managers is to further extend review and evaluation processes to identify how well teachers practices and the curriculum support the realisation of the kindergarten's priorities for children's learning. 

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Pirimai 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 Pirimai Kindergarten will be in four years. 

Joyce Gebbie
Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

17 December 2015 

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

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 30, 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

November 2015

Date of this report

17 December 2015

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.