Titirangi Private Kindergarten - 02/08/2019

1 Evaluation of Titirangi Private Kindergarten

How well placed is Titirangi Private Kindergarten to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Titirangi Private Kindergarten is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

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

Background

Titirangi Private Kindergarten is one of two privately owned centres. It provides sessional or all-day education and care for up to 39 children over two years of age. A small number of Māori children and a few from other diverse backgrounds, attend the centre.

The well-established, long-standing service has been providing education and care for children over two years of age, from Titirangi and the surrounding suburbs for over 30 years. The owner has a leadership role, working with local schools in the Kōtuitui Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako.

The service's philosophy promotes children's confidence and acknowledges the importance of partnership between teachers and families. Teachers aim to provide predictable routines and encourage children to grow in knowledge and experiences in preparation for school.

The licensee holds a full practising teacher certificate and is responsible for the service's governance and management. She leads the teaching team and is supported by two recently appointed teachers and two other long-standing staff members.

The 2014 ERO report noted parents' enthusiastic involvement in centre events. It commented on children's confident leadership of parts of the programme, and teachers supporting them to expand their knowledge and thinking. The report recommended improving bicultural practices, teacher appraisal and incorporating community skills in the programme. While many positive practices continue to be evident, others have not been consistently sustained. Some progress has been made, but there is still work to be done, particularly in relation to teacher appraisal.

The Review Findings

Children are greeted warmly by staff, settle well, and demonstrate a sense of belonging. They readily engage in play in the thoughtfully prepared, attractive learning environment. Children confidently converse with each other and approach adults for comfort, care and any individual needs.

Teachers are encouraging as they guide children’s learning. They enact their philosophy of providing predictable routines to support children's sense of security. Children play either inside or outdoors at set times each day.

Teachers know children and families very well and provide a language-rich curriculum. The structured programme prioritises oral language development, literacy, numeracy and social competence. Children participate in mat times, games and activities, and access a wide variety of resources.

Teachers promote the use of te reo Māori at mat times and sing waiata with the children. Children with additional learning needs are integrated into the programme. Teachers are inclusive and responsive, and work closely with parents and external agencies.

The supervisor, teachers and staff engage in informal, purposeful and ongoing daily evaluation. They have end-of-session meetings to discuss their observations, often with a focus on individual children's behaviour, and how to manage related concerns. Teachers should now focus planning and assessment on children's individual interests and dispositions for learning, and reflect Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum, more visibly in their documentation.

The kindergarten has well-established leadership and extensive connections with local schools and wider educational community. Leaders and the teaching team are reviewing their strategic plan, which is closely aligned to their philosophy. They could consider how to better reflect Te Whāriki, through this review, leading to likely improvements in teaching practice and children's learning outcomes. As part of the centre's internal evaluation, increasing the rigour and analysis of regular parent surveys would also help to identify ways to enhance practices.

Most policies and processes guiding the kindergarten's practices have not been reviewed since 2016. Policies, practices and record keeping in a variety of areas have not been meeting current requirements. While some steps have been taken to address these areas, the implementation and impact of recent changes are not yet evident.

Leaders and staff would benefit from accessing external support to build capacity and improve practices across different areas of service operations, including internal evaluation, teaching and learning, governance, and management.

Key Next Steps

Leaders and teachers agree that their next steps are to:

  • access external support to improve policies, teaching practices, and children's learning outcomes

  • improve opportunities for children to lead their own learning and more readily access the outdoor learning environment

  • continue developing bicultural practices

  • develop robust induction and appraisal processes to support improvements in teaching practice

  • develop shared understandings about implementing the revised Te Whāriki and increasing the visibility of individual children's learning in assessment and planning documentation.

Since the on-site phase of this ERO review, the owner has taken steps to address aspects of practice and documentation that did not meet legal requirements.

  • Some policies and procedures have been adapted to reflect requirements, particularly those relating to safety checking of staff.
  • The owner has established a centre manager role to provide management and leadership, and to ensure that regulatory requirements are met at all times.

Recommendation

ERO has requested an action plan from the service provider that shows how priorities for improvement will be addressed. ERO will request progress updates against the plan.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Titirangi Private 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.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified areas of non-compliance relating to curriculum, health and safety, governance and management. To meet requirements the service needs to improve its performance in the following areas:

  • documented evidence of adults' understanding of children's learning and development, and knowledge of relevant theories and practice in early childhood education

  • policies, practices and documentation related to systematic review, child protection, human resource management, and safety checking of all adults working with children

  • records of three-monthly emergency drills and parental acknowledgement of the administration of medication.

Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Centres 2008, C4, HS8,17,28,31, GMA6,7,7A; Children's Act 2014.

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services Northern

Northern Region

2 August 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

Location

Titirangi, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

20176

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

39 children aged over 2 years

Service roll

39

Gender composition

Girls 20 Boys 19

Ethnic composition

Māori
NZ European/Pākehā
other ethnic groups

1
30
8

Percentage of qualified teachers

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:8

Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

May 2019

Date of this report

2 August 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

June 2014

Education Review

April 2011

Education Review

April 2008

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.