Topkids Mangorei - 03/06/2016

1 Evaluation of Topkids Mangorei

How well placed is Topkids Mangorei 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.

Background

Topkids Mangorei, (previously known as Rainbow Mangorei Road) provides education and care for up to 74 children, including up to 25 under two years. Two specific rooms have recently been connected to allow children to move between the spaces. Seven Māori children are enrolled.

Topkids Mangorei has operated under the BestStart Educare Ltd management structure since 2015. BestStart (previously known as Kidicorp Ltd) is a large national organisation. The Taranaki-based professional services and business managers provide advice, mentoring and support to the centre manager, team leaders and staff. BestStart policies, procedures and review systems provide clear expectations and direction for daily operations.

The July 2013 ERO report identified areas for improvement. These include strengthening self review, appraisal and bicultural practices. Further development of teachers' knowledge of effective assessment, literacy and numeracy learning were required. Progress in these areas is evident.

Over the past year a centre manager, head teacher and some teachers have been appointed. Six of the eleven teaching staff at the time of the review are either provisionally certified or in training. Teachers are currently involved in a Ministry of Education strengthening early learning opportunities (SELO) professional learning and development (PLD) contract.

The Review Findings

Children are well supported and encouraged to develop as independent learners. A flexible environment and a range of resources encourage children to take ownership and make choices in their learning. They demonstrate a sense of belonging in the centre. Health and wellbeing are promoted through healthy eating, positive behaviours and physical activity. Children confidently engage with adults and each other.

Teachers' positive interactions and relationships with children foster children's language development. Teachers listen to children and use questions to help extend their thinking and problem solving. Deliberate strategies are in place to promote successful transitions into and through the centre and on to schools.

The outdoor environment offers suitable challenges and invites children to explore the natural world, learn about animals and plants and revisit prior learning. Teachers take opportunities to integrate and promote mathematics and literacy learning within play and planned learning.

Consistent caregiving enables teachers to respond sensitively to individual infants and toddlers. Improved access helps infants to more easily interact with older siblings and children.

Teachers are developing their knowledge of responsive planning, assessment and evaluation through the use of centre guidelines and the early childhood curriculum, Te Whāriki. Children's interests and learning informs planning that is shared at team meetings. Teachers make increasing use of digital technology to increase involvement of parents in children's learning and share emerging interests.

Centre leaders agree that planning and assessment practices need to be further developed. This includes increased use of children's voice and how teachers extend individuals' learning. Greater use of evidence-based evaluation should help teachers to gauge the impact of planning and assessment on improving learning outcomes for children.

The recent review of the centre philosophy and vision involved consultation and bicultural partnerships. This process led to the development of the new whakaahua (representative picture) by a parent to reflect the philosophy: ‘With unity and respect, we will learn and grow’. The centre has recently defined how the philosophy and values should look and sound for children, staff and parents.

BestStart identifies priorities to inform strategic plans and goals pertinent to the centre's needs and philosophy. Regional human resource processes and professional expertise support the centre in achieving its goals.

Leadership development, mentoring, induction and PLD programmes are planned and well aligned to centre priorities, and to teachers' roles and levels of need and experience. Leaders are appropriately improvement focused at a time of change in several leaders and staff. They are committed to improving the consistency in practices which reflect the centre's recently developed philosophy and contribute to positive outcomes for all children. Some teachers are beginning to use inquiry to inform their practice and improve their teaching.

The appraisal framework and expectations have been recently reviewed to have well-defined steps and processes to support teacher improvement. Closer monitoring of appraisal and mentoring processes for consistency, regular use of evaluative feedback and teachers' use of robust inquiry should strengthen professional practice.

Leaders and teachers are increasingly promoting and modelling te ao Māori across the centre to promote bicultural perspectives and increased recognition of tikanga Māori. They share and promote their own and children's learning of pepeha, waiata and karakia. Increasing use of local contexts and experiences strengthen children's connections with their community. Māori children and their whānau value the strategies that affirm their language, culture and identity.

Teachers recognise the diversity of children’s heritage and promote their culture and identity in the curriculum. They encourage parents to share their home language and work collaboratively to meet their aspirations.

Self review informs and contributes to improvements for children through decision making, PLD and centre policies and practices. Review processes are well defined and increasingly responsive to identified centre priorities. Some reviews appropriately evaluate the impact of recent centre improvement initiatives to guide further actions. Further development of leaders and teachers' evaluation capability is a next step to support centre wide improvement.

Key Next Steps

ERO and leaders agree the key next steps are to strengthen:

  • planning and assessment processes to better capture children's voice and extend their interests

  • teacher inquiry and evaluation processes to better inform ongoing improvements in teaching practices and positive outcomes for children

  • leaders' involvement in monitoring of the appraisal and mentoring processes to promote consistency of teaching practices.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Topkids Mangorei 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 Topkids Mangorei will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

3 June 2016

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

New Plymouth

Ministry of Education profile number

45335

Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

75 children, including up to 25 aged under 2

Service roll

74

Gender composition

Boys 42, Girls 32

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Other ethnic groups

7

59

8

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2

1:5

Meets minimum requirements

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

April 2016

Date of this report

3 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

March 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 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.