Puketapu Kindergarten - 30/10/2013

1 Evaluation of Puketapu Kindergarten

How well placed is Puketapu 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.


Puketapu Kindergarten is one of sixteen kindergartens managed by the North Taranaki Kindergarten Association (the association). The association governing board is responsible for setting overall strategic and policy direction for the organisation. Senior teachers are employed by the association to support teaching and learning.

The kindergarten, located in the seaside community of Bell Block, is in the grounds of Puketapu School. The service is licensed for 34 children aged from two to five years. Since the July 2010 ERO report, the kindergarten has diversified to an all-day licence. The teaching team consists of four qualified and registered teachers.

Teachers work collaboratively to reflect the kindergarten philosophy in practice. ERO observed that children are encouraged to become “explorative, confident, independent learners and communicators”. Teachers value and acknowledge parents’ aspirations for their children and take these into account in assessment and planning practices. They should continue to review and develop evaluation processes to improve teaching and learning outcomes children and whānau.

This review was part of a cluster of eight reviews in the North Taranaki Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Board members undertake regular training and have developed useful processes to support governance roles and responsibilities. The senior teacher provides ongoing support and guidance for teachers. She promotes regular professional development opportunities and use of systems that focus on fostering positive outcomes for children.

Parents are welcomed and acknowledged as their child’s first teacher. Partnerships are based on acceptance and respect. Teachers encourage and provide opportunities for parents to contribute to their child’s learning. The diverse backgrounds of children and their families are valued.

Children learn in an environment that promotes exploration that is meaningful and enjoyable. They engage in free, uninterrupted play and investigation that encourages independence and extends learning. Children’s emerging interests in literacy, numeracy and science are fostered. Portfolios provide an attractive record of each child’s participation and enjoyment in learning experiences. Teachers are aware of the need to include contributions from parents and whānau.

Teachers have a clear focus on ensuring teaching practice and the environment are supportive and inclusive. They share values that encourage respectful behaviour and support children's developing social competencies. Staff observe and closely monitor children with additional needs. They work collaboratively with parents and whānau to develop individual learning or positive guidance plans.

The environment reflects the dual heritage of Aotearoa/New Zealand in variety of ways. The outdoor area, with well-integrated natural materials, has been designed collaboratively. It shows a strong bicultural commitment, is aesthetically appealing and supports sustainable practices. Children engage with the living world in authentic and meaningful ways. Children have opportunities to hear te reo Māori incidentally within the programme. Teachers continue, through professional learning and development, to extend their practice in giving significance to Māori learners’ culture, language, and identity. ERO affirms this development.

Transition to school focuses on children feeling well supported and confident in a new situation. Parents visit the new entrant classrooms and some choose to share their child’s portfolio with the teacher. Kindergarten teachers support families with information and discussion. Children are able to spend time at the schools prior to enrolment and turning five is an occasion for celebration.

The head teacher is a collaborative leader who values the skills and knowledge of the teaching team. Teachers are improvement focused and receptive to change. Sound use is beginning to be made of current best practice to support developing self-review processes.

Key Next Steps

Continue developing capacity for evaluation and self review to promote teachers' inquiry into the impact of teaching practice on outcomes for children by:

  • ensuring that self-review questions help to identify clear indicators for successful outcomes

  • strengthening assessment practices to more effectively highlight children’s progress over time

  • enhancing transition to school by engaging school personnel in conversations about the curriculum and what a capable new entrant learner looks like.

The association should continue to review appraisal and consider formal critique of teaching practice and feedback processes to improve teaching and learning.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Puketapu 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 Puketapu Kindergarten will be in three years.index-html-m2a7690f7.gif

Joyce Gebbie

National Manager Review Services Central Region (Acting)

30 October 2013

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


Bell Block, New Plymouth

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

34 children aged over 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 18, Girls 33

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā

South African














Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Choose an item.


Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

August 2013

Date of this report

30 October 2013

Most recent ERO report(s)


Education Review

July 2010


Education Review

December 2006


Education Review

December 2003

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.