Te Timatatanga o te Matauranga - 29/09/2014

1 Evaluation of Te Timatatanga o te Matauranga

How well placed is Te Timatatanga o te Matauranga 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.


Te Timatatanga o te Matauranga is situated next to Otangarei Primary School, in Whangarei. It offers school-day sessions and caters for up to 30 children from two years to school age.

The kindergarten provides learning and teaching from a bicultural perspective for its predominantly Māori community, recognising the gifts, talents and strengths of children’s family and whānau. Equity funding received by the centre is used to provide hot lunches and healthy food snacks for tamariki throughout the day.

Te Timatatanga o te Matauranga operates as part of the Northland Kindergarten Association which provides policy, procedural and operating guidelines. The association also provides teachers with regular, topical professional development and on-going support from a professional practice manager (PPM).

Since the centre’s 2011 ERO report, teachers have continued to refine their planning processes and have worked to ensure te reo Māori is used more consistently within the teaching and learning programme provided for children.

The Review Findings

Children enjoy their time at the centre. They show a strong sense of belonging and form strong friendships with other tamariki. Positive child-teacher relationships create a foundation for nurturing children’s learning and social skills. Children have many opportunities to explore their environment and play with other children.

Connections to children’s culture and home and family life are used to guide teachers’ planning and make children’s learning meaningful. Partnerships with whānau are important and valued by teachers. Parents are regularly consulted about their tamariki’s welfare and learning, and about planning for various centre projects.

The head teacher models quality teaching. She continues to build a collaborative teaching team through trusting relationships. Teachers have multiple opportunities to lead, share ownership of the programme and work together as a team. Teachers integrate literacy and mathematics meaningfully into the kindergarten’s programme. They include tikanga and te reo Māori in the programme, using support from external advisers to develop their knowledge and skills in these areas. The use of child-led activity based storytelling is also used very effectively to link language, identity and meaning back to Māori culture.

Assessment portfolios are used to maintain records of children’s time in the centre. Children enjoy reading their portfolios and sharing these records of their progress and achievements with others. Parents are encouraged to contribute to their child’s learning by adding their comments to their portfolio.

The kindergarten’s philosophy is developed in consultation with the parent community, and guides its daily operations and programme directions. Teachers frequently refer to this philosophy when evaluating teaching and learning programmes.

The centre’s PPM is highly focussed on ensuring there is good professional support and development for staff at Te Timatatanga o Te Matauranga. Teachers are given opportunities to grow their leadership and teaching capabilities. The PPM appreciates the uniqueness of the kindergarten and its teaching team.

Key Next Steps

To improve practice ERO and centre leaders agree that key next steps include:

  • reviewing teaching strategies to strengthen the focus placed on children as capable and competent learners
  • using open ended questions to further promote and support the development of children’s thinking skills and abilities.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Te Timatatanga o te Matauranga 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 Te Timatatanga o te Matauranga will be in three years.

Dale Bailey

National Manager Review Services

Northern Region

29 September 2014

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


Whangarei, Northland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 15

Boys 11

Ethnic composition


NZ European/Pākehā





Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2


Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

July 2014

Date of this report

29 September 2014

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

April 2011


Education Review

October 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.