Spotted Frog Preschool - 07/02/2018

1 Evaluation of Spotted Frog Preschool

How well placed is Spotted Frog Preschool 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.


Spotted Frog Preschool provides all-day education and care for up to 50 children over two years of age. The centre is privately owned and operates from a new purpose-built facility in Mangere Bridge, Auckland. Most children attending are Pākehā, together with a small number of Māori and Pacific children.

The director has a clear vision for the centre and ensures that the centre's philosophy is reflected in practice. She is a registered teacher, and the day to day manager and leader of the centre. She is supported by a head teacher. Qualified teachers make up the teaching team.

Children are cared for and learn in a mixed-aged setting. They play in well organised and attractive indoor and outdoor areas.

Spotted Frog Preschool opened in September 2015. This is ERO's first review of the centre.

The Review Findings

Children are settled and have trusting and warm relationships with teachers. They play together happily in mixed age groups. Teachers' interactions with children and families are nurturing, affirming, and respectful. Teachers provide children with good opportunities to collaborate, negotiate, and problem solve together.

Children are confident speakers, and they share their ideas with teachers and peers. Teachers support children to build their vocabulary and understanding by reading with them and engaging them in conversation. Mathematics and science concepts are integrated into the daily programme.

Children have good access to high quality resources. The outdoor area is attractively set out. It offers children choice of play with access to a range of activities to help them to develop their physical skills and confidence. The indoor environment offers spaces which invite children to play. Local excursions and walks extend children's physical movement and knowledge, and their confidence in the local community. Groups of children regularly visit the Mangere Mountain.

Bicultural practice is developing. Teachers are committed to using te reo Māori as part of their daily routines. Teachers plan further work to build their confidence in te reo and tikanga Māori.

The centre owner/director has a clear vision and sets the direction for the service. The teaching team have developed a good professional work culture. They collaborate well and work towards shared understandings about effective practice, with a focus on improvement. The distributive sharing of responsibilities is developing.

Teachers have established planning and evaluation frameworks. They plan activities from observing children's emerging interests, and considering their common interests. Teachers should plan more deliberately for children to lead their own learning, and generate their own thinking. They should support children to work together to extend and create more challenge and complexity in their play.

Teachers have built close relationships with families. Parents share with teachers their aspirations for their children's learning. Teachers use an online portal to communicate with parents about their children's development. Teachers could reflect on the intent of individual children's portfolios, and ensure that children's cultures and languages are acknowledged. Portfolios should show the learning journey of each child, and the development of their interests and strengths over time.

Parents are important contributors to the centre's operation and development. They regularly participate in the centre, attend information evenings, and their opinions are sought through surveys. They regularly respond to their children's experiences through the online portal, and informally during drop off and pick up times.

Teachers have built good relationships with the local school. Children and families are well supported through effective transition to school practices.

Internal evaluation processes and operations are well established. Leaders use internal evaluation to ensure there is a focus on improvement. The recent review of the centre's philosophy statement is purposeful, and includes indicators that can be used to reflect on centre practices.

Key Next Steps

The centre is consolidating its effective practices. Key next steps include:

  • teachers developing te reo and tikanga Māori through culturally responsive practices
  • reviewing the culturally responsive curriculum so that Pacific children, and children of other cultures, can see their cultures and languages in the programme
  • reviewing the effectiveness of the curriculum design to ensure its enactment is achieving positive outcomes for children. 

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Spotted Frog Preschool 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 Spotted Frog Preschool will be in three years.

Julie Foley
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern (Acting)

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

7 February 2018 

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 


Mangere Bridge, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

50 children aged over 2 years

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys      45
Girls       34

Ethnic composition



Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

December 2017

Date of this report

7 February 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

No previous ERO reports


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.