Te Wharemarie Tamariki - 16/07/2019

1 Evaluation of Te Wharemarie Tamariki

How well placed is Te Wharemarie Tamariki to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Te Wharemarie Tamariki is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

ERO's findings that support this overall judgement are summarised below.


Te Wharemarie Tamariki, located within the Wellington City Council premises, is a not-for-profit community centre. It is licensed to provide education and care for up to 27 children, aged six months to five years old.

Day-to-day operations are overseen by the centre manager and team leader. There have been significant staff changes.

The centre’s vision is to grow curious, tenacious, questioning, lifelong learners. The philosophy focuses on ways of being, knowing, doing and positioning. It seeks to encourage creativity, risk taking and exploration in a safe, caring and homely environment.

ERO's March 2016 report identified key next steps for this service. These included: strengthening the appraisal process; further developing teachers' competence in te reo me ngā tikanga Māori; and implementing robust assessment, planning and evaluation. Ongoing progress is being made in these areas.

The Review Findings

Children confidently engage in activities and sustained play experiences. The inclusive learning environment promotes genuine interactions based on respect and willingness to listen. Warm, reciprocal relationships are evident between staff, whānau and children.

Responsive caregiving supports infants and toddlers need for strong and secure attachment. Teachers maintain a calm, unhurried pace in which younger children have space and time to lead their learning. Tuakana teina approaches are used effectively to enable younger learners to actively play and learn with their older peers.

Teachers know children well and purposefully respond to their strengths, interests and capabilities. They use a range of deliberate strategies to support children’s oral language development. Routine times are used as teachable moments. Environmental sustainability is a focus and children are actively involved in promoting this. Staff use the central Wellington area effectively to strongly promote children’s sense of connection to the urban environment and extend learning.

Aspects of kaupapa Māori concepts are strongly evident in the environment. Children are familiar with and participate in karakia and waiata. Teachers use te reo Māori in learning conversations with children to enrich the programme. Leaders should identify how they can weave places of significant value for Māori into the localised, bicultural curriculum.

The service is undertaking a review of its philosophy. Leaders and teachers should continue to engage with parents, families, whānau Māori and their Pacific community to determine what educational success looks like for their children. This should assist them to more clearly define and support a shared understanding of what learning matters here.

The centre has developed a sound inquiry based planning for learning framework. Group planning supports children’s emerging skills. Teachers notice their interests, recognise the potential learning and respond appropriately. A next step is to clearly articulate specific and measureable learning outcomes in group planning and identify intentional teaching strategies to meet these. This will help the centre to establish what they want to achieve, and provide guidelines to measure the impact of the learning programme.

Developing relationships enable parents, whānau and teachers to set meaningful learning goals for individual children. Learning journals record interests, centre excursions, milestones reached and participation in the programme. To further improve assessment teachers should ensure learning journals more clearly show:

  • children's individual learning goals, including parent aspirations

  • the learning that is taking place

  • progression of learning over time

  • links to the bicultural curriculum and places of local significance for Māori

  • recognition and celebration of the child’s culture, language and identity.

Children’s sense of belonging is nurtured as they enter into the service. Seamless transition through the centre is promoted by the holistic inclusion of all children in learning and play. A personalised pathway to school programmes strongly prepares children to successfully move on to their next place of learning.

A sound, systematic approach to relevant and meaningful internal evaluation is undertaken. This leads to changes that have a positive impact on improving learning outcomes for children.

A useful appraisal system is in place for staff to support them to grow their capability. Meetings and targeted observations occur regularly. Teachers are challenged effectively to reflect on and improve their practice.

A well-considered strategic plan guides the direction of the service. The parent committee works collaboratively to support teachers and staff to meet centre goals and objectives. The centre manager shows a strong commitment to enacting the philosophy, vision and goals of the service.

Key Next Steps

Trustees, leaders and ERO have identified priorities for improvement to further develop:

  • assessment, planning and evaluation for learning

  • the bicultural curriculum linked to places of local significance for Māori.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Te Wharemarie Tamariki 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.

Lesley Patterson

Director Review and Improvement Services Southern

Southern Region

16 July 2019

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

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

27 children, including up to 8 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Male 16, Female 11

Ethnic composition

NZ European/Pākehā
Other ethnic groups


Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2019

Date of this report

16 July 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

March 2016

Education Review

May 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.