Roscommon Kindergarten - 16/12/2016

1 Evaluation of Roscommon Kindergarten

How well placed is Roscommon 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.

Background

Roscommon Kindergarten is in Clendon next to the Roscommon Primary school. It is licensed for children over two years of age, open for full days, shorter sessions and also school term breaks, to meet the requirements of the community. The community is multicultural, with predominately Māori and Pacific families. The kindergarten teaching team is culturally diverse with four registered teachers, an administrator, teacher aide and a qualified, unregistered teacher.

The kindergarten operates within the policies and management framework of the Counties Manukau Kindergarten Association. An education manager (EM) visits and provides leadership and curriculum support for teachers.

Since the 2013 ERO review there have been staff changes and an increase in operating hours. The Association has introduced initiatives to encourage more families to participate in the kindergarten. There is an increase in the number of two year old children attending the centre. Teachers have continued the good quality practices noted in the 2013 ERO report. They have engaged in professional learning and development to enrich their teaching and strengthen their planning. There has been a major reconstruction of the outdoor playground and improvements to the interior of the centre.

The importance of fostering whanaungatanga and ako in a nurturing environment and supporting child-initiated learning through play and exploration, are emphasised in the kindergarten’s philosophy. The principles of Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, guide teacher practices. Teachers promote learning about environmental sustainability and healthy lifestyles through the Enviroschools programme, Healthy Heart and Breakfast in the Kindergarten initiatives.

This review was part of a cluster of five kindergarten reviews in the Counties Manukau Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Teachers provide a stimulating, attractive learning environment that fosters a high level of child-led learning through play. Well resourced and inviting play areas inspire and support children’s engagement in sustained play and nurtures their sense of themselves as capable learners. Wall displays reflect teachers' respect for te ao Māori and children’s family and cultural backgrounds. Children are able to explore, make discoveries and experience appropriate challenges in the naturally landscaped outdoor area. The environment is harmonious, calm and welcoming for children and families

Whanaungatanga is a feature of this kindergarten, and is apparent in respectful, responsive relationships between teachers, children and their whānau. Teachers affirm and build on the strengths of children and their whānau. Parent/whānau partnership in their children's learning is valued, encouraged and in place.

Children are enthusiastic capable learners who have fun and play cooperatively with others. Their natural curiosity is encouraged as is their ability to share ideas and problem solve. They have a strong sense of belonging, share ideas and show concern for others. Children use literacy, mathematics, science and digital technologies as part of their play. They are imaginative and creative and are developing a good understanding of the world around them.

Teachers provide a very well planned curriculum that is highly responsive to children's culture, strengths and abilities. The programme reflects Te Whāriki, is inclusive of all children and offers meaningful learning experiences. Comprehensive programme documentation makes children's learning and parent aspirations visible. Children’s portfolios, including online e-portfolios, are highly valued and frequently added to by families. They clearly show children's individual learning journeys and how effectively the programme promotes positive outcomes for them.

Teachers provide challenging learning experiences that foster children’s development as competent and confident learners. They are very aware of and respond to the learning needs and styles of younger two-year-old children and of older children. Their sensitive and supportive interactions extend children’s ideas, language and interests in play and discussion. Teachers share a commitment to enhancing their bicultural practices and promoting social justice.

Teachers work within a culture of continuous improvement that is supported by research and professional development. They benefit from the head teachers' strong professional leadership. Internal evaluation is well developed and focused on improving educational outcomes for all children. There is a shared vision and clear direction for the future, which includes continuing to strengthen children’s transition from kindergarten to school.

The Association continues to provide very good support for the kindergarten. The systems and personnel in place to support kindergarten operations, and ongoing review and monitoring, contribute to efficient management practices. Association leaders establish overarching long-term goals so that teachers can align their annual plan with the Association's strategic direction. They are responsive to changing community needs and variable hours of operation provide flexibility for families. Leaders continue to adapt personnel systems, including teacher appraisal, in response to changing requirements.

The Association focuses on continuous improvement in kindergarten operations and educational outcomes for children. They have high expectations for teachers to use evidence based, reflective practices. The Association has a strong commitment to bicultural practices, working in partnership with Māori whānau and each kindergarten's community. Leaders embrace cultural diversity and are currently focusing on strategies to promote success for Pacific learners.

Key Next Steps

The teachers, and the education manager agree that key next steps for the kindergarten could include continuing to:

  • use internal evaluation as a tool to enhance service provision and teaching practices
  • enrich bicultural practices, including the use of assessment from a Māori perspective.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

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

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

16 December 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 

Location

Clendon, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

5131

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, over 2 years of age

Service roll

56

Gender composition

Girls 30 Boys 26

Ethnic composition

Māori

Samoan

Cook Island Māori

Tongan

Indian

South East Asian

other

25

18

4

3

3

2

1

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

October 2016

Date of this report

16 December 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

 

Education Review

June 2013

Education Review

March 2010

Education Review

April 2007

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.