Seashells Early Childhood Centre - 09/10/2019

ERO’s Judgement

Regulatory standards

ERO’s judgement



Premises and facilities


Health and safety


Governance, management and administration


At the time of the review, ERO found the service was taking reasonable steps to meet regulatory standards.


Seashells Early Childhood Centre has operated at Coopers Beach since May 2014. It is part of the nationwide Provincial Education Group. The centre is licensed to provide for up to 56 children, including up to 16 aged under two years. Seven of the 13 staff, including the manager, are qualified teachers. Two-thirds of the children enrolled have Māori heritage.

Summary of Review Findings

Children learn in a language-rich environment with teachers who engage them in positive, meaningful interactions. Teachers plan and implement a curriculum that is inclusive and responsive to children as confident and competent learners. Teaching practices are underpinned by a good understanding of children’s learning and development and relevant early childhood education theories. The curriculum acknowledges and reflects the unique place of Māori as tangata whenua.

The service is managed effectively. Human resource management practices are suitable. An ongoing process of review keeps the service focused on improving outcomes for children. The premises support easy access to resources and the provision of different types of indoor and outdoor experiences. Health and safety practices are appropriately documented and monitored.

Key Next Steps

Next steps include:

  • showing continuity of learning more clearly over time in teachers’ assessment and planning
  • increasing the rigour of internal evaluation.

Next ERO Review

The next ERO review is likely to be an Education Review.

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services (Northern)

Northern Region | Te Tai Raki

9 October 2019

Information About the Service

Early Childhood Service Name

Seashells Early Childhood Centre

Profile Number



Mangonui, Northland

Service type

Education and care service

Number licensed for

56 children, including up to 16 aged under 2

Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratio of staff to children under 2

1-4 - Better than regulatory standards

Reported ratio of staff to children over 2

1-8 - Better than regulatory standards

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 41 Boys 29

Ethnic composition

Māori 47
NZ European/Pākehā 18
other ethnic groups 5

Review team on site

August 2019

Date of this report

9 October 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review January 2016

General Information about Assurance Reviews

All services are licensed under the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008. The legal requirements for early childhood services also include the Licensing Criteria for Education and Care Services 2008.

Services must meet the standards in the regulations and the requirements of the licensing criteria to gain and maintain a licence to operate.

ERO undertakes an Assurance Review process in any centre-based service:

  • having its first ERO review – including if it is part of a governing organisation
  • previously identified as ‘not well placed’ or ‘requiring further development’
  • that has moved from a provisional to a full licence
  • that have been re-licenced due to a change of ownership
  • where an Assurance Review process is determined to be appropriate.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

All early childhood services are required to promote children’s health and safety and to regularly review their compliance with legal requirements. Before the review, the staff and management of a service 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.

As part of an Assurance Review ERO assesses whether the regulated standards are being met. In particular, ERO looks at a 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 certification; ratios)
  • evacuation procedures and practices for fire and earthquake.

As part of an Assurance Review ERO also gathers and records evidence through:

  • discussions with those involved in the service
  • consideration of relevant documentation, including the implementation of health and safety systems
  • observations of the environment/premises, curriculum implementation and teaching practice.