Tui Park Kindergarten - 09/06/2015

1 Evaluation of Tui Park Kindergarten

How well placed is Tui Park Kindergarten 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.


Tui Park Kindergarten is located in Tawa, near Wellington. The service offers flexible, daily education and care for children aged over two. Parents may choose for their children to attend between two to five daily sessions. Recent community support to redevelop parts of the outdoor areas enhances the learning environment for children and their families.

Tui Park Kindergarten is one of 85 kindergartens and three home-based education and care networks governed and managed by He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua Free Kindergarten Association Incorporated (the association). This is a new kindergarten association created from joining the Rimutaka and Wellington Kindergarten Associations in 2014. The transition to the new association is expected to be a three-year process.

The board and managers provide governance for the organisation. Senior teachers have delegated kindergartens. Their role is to provide regular support and a range of professional learning and development opportunities for teachers.

In 2012, the association developed a framework to guide the implementation of its curriculum,
Te Manawa. This document outlines criteria for curriculum delivery including expectations for assessment and planning for children’s learning.

The April 2012 ERO report for Tui Park Kindergarten identified that assessment for learning, use of te reo Māori and self-review processes needed strengthening to enhance teaching and learning. Areas where the Wellington Kindergarten Association needed to strengthen its support for teachers were also identified at the time. Improvement continues to be needed in some of these areas that the association has plans to address. These feature as key next steps in this report. The alignment of individual kindergarten’s annual plans with the association’s strategic priorities has now been addressed.

The teaching team includes six qualified teachers. Four have full registration. One has provisional registration and one has registration that is subject to confirmation. Several staffing changes have occurred since the previous report. Three full time and two part time teachers has been together since early 2014 and a third part time teacher is in a relieving position.

This review was part of a cluster of 12 kindergarten reviews of the He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua Kindergartens.

The Review Findings

The kindergarten is welcoming to all children, their parents and whānau. Relationships are central to teachers and based on mutual respect and trust. Collaborative ways of working are encouraged with everyone involved in the kindergarten.

Children enthusiastically participate in a child-initiated and play-based programme and have fun as part of the learning process. Teachers use a narrative approach to show learners’ engagement in the programme and their emerging interests and ideas. Recent developments to assessment and planning processes include making children’s learning more visible. Their learning and development is increasingly celebrated and shared between teachers, children and parents

Teachers know children and their whānau well. Interactions between adults and children are sustained and enjoyable. Positive, respectful relationships are established in a mostly calm and purposeful environment. Children initiate interactions and conversations with their peers and adults. Their independence is promoted. Learners make choices about play and set challenges for themselves. Teachers help children’s development of literacy and mathematics by focusing on print awareness and using open-ended resources for mathematical exploration.

Teachers work closely with the families of children identified as having additional needs. External agencies, families and centre staff work together to support the progress and development of these children. An inclusive culture that acknowledges and shows respect for all ethnic groups is evident in the kindergarten.

Children’s sense of belonging is nurtured when beginning kindergarten. Teachers support parents to settle children according to their needs. Teachers’ participation in cluster meetings with local schools and kindergartens builds closer links with a range of schools. This involvement helps children as they move on to school.

Recent review of the kindergarten philosophy promotes a shared understanding of values and beliefs amongst teachers. Teachers have some opportunities to use their expertise and develop leadership skills further. Time is given for critical reflection on their practice. Appropriate use is beginning to be made of current best practice to support the development of self-review processes.

Teachers have an understanding of Māori and Pacific perspectives across all areas of the curriculum They are investigating further ways to promote te ao Māori in a more local, place-based context. This development should include establishing relationships with mana whenua and making use of Ministry of Education resources such as, Ka Hikitia - Accelerating Success 2013-2017 and Tātaiako: Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori Learners.

The senior teacher provides termly written reports that outline agreed development priorities and progress in relation to the quality of teaching and learning. The association has recently implemented new reports that should more deliberately focus on outcomes for children, teacher and leader performance. ERO's evaluation affirms this development.

The previous ERO report identified that the association needed to improve the appraisal processes. These continue to require strengthening. A recently revised appraisal model, yet to be implemented, includes: more focused goals that build teacher and leader capability; more regular and targeted feedback and feed forward about teaching practice; and clearer links with the Registered Teacher Criteria.

Key Next Steps

The senior teacher, head teacher, staff and ERO agree on the following key next steps for Tui Park Kindergarten, to:

  • embed recently refined and developed assessment and programme planning processes
  • strengthen and further develop understanding and practices of self review and evaluation.

The senior management team of He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua should continue to further improve processes for growing and developing the practice of teachers, head teachers and senior teachers. This should include:

  • improvements to the quality and monitoring of processes to support individual kindergartens and regular implementation of a robust appraisal system.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Tui Park 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. 

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of Tui Park Kindergarten will be in three years. 

Joyce Gebbie
Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

9 June 2015 

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

40 children, aged over 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 29, Boys 21

Ethnic composition

Cook Island Māori
Other ethnic groups


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

March 2015

Date of this report

9 June 2015

Most recent ERO report(s)


Education Review

April 2012

Education Review

April 2008

Education Review

June 2005

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.