Te Timatanga Hou Kindergarten - 27/01/2020

1 Evaluation of Te Timatanga Hou Kindergarten

How well placed is Te Timatanga Hou Kindergarten to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Te Timatanga Hou Kindergarten is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.


Te Timatanga Hou Kindergarten provides whānau-based all-day education and care for up to 46 children, including 12 children aged under two years. Flexible sessions run daily to meet the needs of whānau. Of the roll of 44 children, 17 are Māori and 10 are of Pacific heritage.

The recently reviewed kindergarten philosophy is 'He tangata te mokopuna, kia whaangaio, kia tipu, kia rea, a child is a treasure, to be nurtured to grow and to flourish'. Supporting the philosophy are the values of whakamana, kotahitanga, whānau tangata and ngā hononga.

Since the June 2015 review there have been some staffing changes. All teachers are fully qualified. The kindergarten is a member of the Horowhenua Kāhui Ako I Community of Learning.

The kindergarten is governed and managed by He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua Kindergarten Association (the association). The chief executive and a board of trustees are responsible for the governance. A team of senior teachers oversee and support the professional practice of the teaching team. The association governs 102 kindergartens which includes three Pacific kindergartens and a Pacific home-based service with two networks.

ERO’s June 2015 ERO report identified areas requiring further development. These included continuing to strengthen assessment, planning and evaluation, developing and improving understanding of evaluative self-review, and developing approaches to support Pacific learners. Good progress has been made in all identified areas.

Progress has been made by the association to improve the quality and monitoring of processes to support individual kindergartens and regular implementation of a robust appraisal system.

This was one of two kindergartens reviewed in the He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua Kindergarten Association.

The Review Findings

Children confidently lead their learning in a thoughtfully designed indoor and outdoor environment. Independence is encouraged through opportunities to initiate, choose activities and extend their ideas.

Children have many opportunities to hear, speak and sing in te reo Māori. Teachers are committed to consistently learning and using te reo Māori in everyday interactions. Concepts within te ao Māori are key to the enacted kindergarten philosophy, and intentionally shared with tamariki and whānau through purposeful learning stories. Children learn about local hapu and iwi, whakapapa and kawa and respectful connections have been made with local iwi.

Children with additional learning needs are well supported. External agencies are accessed when appropriate, in consultation with whānau.

Teachers are responsive to children’s emerging interests, discoveries and needs. They deliberately model social strategies and maximise opportunities to add challenge, complexity and authenticity to children’s play. Children learn about sustainable practices, respect for papatūānuku and kaitiakitanga/guardianship of the land as they plant seeds, nurture and harvest vegetables from the māra, the kindergarten garden.

Teachers maintain an unhurried pace in which infants and toddlers have space and time to engage in exploration, investigation and problem solving. Attentive caregiving enables teachers to respond sensitively to each child's cues, changing needs and preferences. The holistic learning programme reflects children's interests and follows the natural rhythm of the day. Teachers model nurturing relationships and whānau manaakitanga as they support older children to play and care for those younger.

Parents and whānau are welcomed and encouraged to be meaningfully involved in the programme. Teachers value and acknowledge the contributions and expertise of whānau. Parents' aspirations for their children guide individual planning. An online platform strengthens communication links between home and the kindergarten.

The association's governing documents guide teacher practice. These are appropriately used by leaders and teachers to inform assessment and planning and underpin decision making about the provision of the learning programmes.

Teachers record observations of children’s play and learning, and celebrate their growing friendships, skills and learning dispositions. They regularly discuss the learning of individual children and groups. Leaders and teachers should now prioritise the alignment of assessment, planning and evaluation practices to show clearer links between individual and group planning. Identifying and regularly evaluating how effectively teaching strategies impact on outcomes for children should better inform their next learning steps.

Leadership and teachers are highly reflective and use internal evaluation to thoughtfully review their processes and practices. To further strengthen this, identified next steps from the evaluation should be strategically planned, implemented and evaluated. Teachers access a good range of professional learning and research to continually grow their understandings. An effective distributed leadership model is highly evident and teachers take on a range of responsibilities.

Leadership and teachers have well-established connections with the local community, and continue to deepen relationships with a number of local schools. Membership in the kāhui ako also supports and strengthens children's transition to school.

A well-considered appraisal process has recently been enhanced to grow teacher practice. Teachers are expected to inquire into the effectiveness of their teaching. Purposeful appraisal goals focus on improving aspects of leadership and practice to support children’s learning and wellbeing.

The senior teaching team are reflective and highly improvement focused. They successfully foster a collective sense of responsibility to implement the vision, values and mission of the association. Well-developed systems and processes guide teachers in their work and positively impact on children’s learning.

Senior leaders work effectively together, with a shared commitment to meeting strategic goals and objectives for the benefit of children, whānau and community. Well-considered resource allocation supports and enhances children’s learning and wellbeing.

Key Next Steps

Leaders and teachers agree that key next steps are to:

  • better align individual and group assessment, planning and evaluation practices so that the impact of teaching strategies can be evaluated and used to determine next learning steps

  • strategically plan, implement and evaluate identified next steps from an internal evaluation.

ERO and senior leaders agree that the association's next step are to:

  • continue to follow the strategic direction set through Tūmanako, Te Tiriti o Waitangi based Strategic Priority Framework.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Te Timatanga Hou 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.

Dr Lesley Patterson

Director Review and Improvement Services Te Tai Tini

Southern Region

27 January 2020

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

46 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Female 23, Male 21

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā


Other ethnic groups





Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Meets minimum requirements

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

October 2019

Date of this report

27 January 2020

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

June 2015

Education Review

October 2013

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

The overall judgement that ERO makes will depend on how well the service promotes positive learning outcomes for children. The categories are:

  • Very well placed

  • Well placed

  • Requires further development

  • Not well placed

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.