Waiheke Community Childcare Centre - 10/06/2016

1 Evaluation of Waiheke Community Childcare Centre

How well placed is Waiheke Community Childcare Centre 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.


Waiheke Community Childcare Centre, on Waiheke Island in Auckland, is licensed to provide care and education for 30 children, including up to 8 aged under two years. Children of all ages play together and have access to all indoor and outdoor play spaces.

A new senior teacher was appointed early this year to lead the team of five qualified teachers. Many of the teachers have been at the centre for several years. Some permanent relievers support the teaching team.

The centre philosophy is underpinned by the 'Bush School' programme which allows older children to spend time in the local environment exploring the bush and the beach. The philosophy guides teachers to encourage children to take on new challenges by providing opportunities for them to actively explore the environment and find innovative solutions to problems.

The 2012 ERO report noted teaching interactions that supported children to make decisions and extend their own learning. The report also acknowledged teachers' engagement with Māori leaders in the community. These features have been maintained. Teachers responded positively to the 2012 report's suggested areas for review. These areas included strengthening teachers' engagement with whānau of Maori children, and reviewing the centre's philosophy to better reflect centre beliefs and practices.

The Review Findings

The centre's philosophy is very evident in practice. Teachers view children as competent and capable learners. Children are encouraged to co-construct the environment and set their own challenges. They make choices about their food, their play and their day. As a result children are self-managing and willing to take on new learning ventures.

Children display a strong sense of belonging in the centre. They confidently interact and talk with each other and adults. Friendships are maintained by children as they discuss their play and negotiate solutions to problems. Children of different ages play well together and older children are respectful of younger children. Some children have known each other's families for long periods of time, as older siblings attended the centre together.

The well-considered programme allows children to participate in regular outdoor excursions and to learn about the natural environment of the island setting. Teachers include te ao Māori perspectives in the programme and centre environment. Te reo Māori is heard in the centre in waiata and in conversations between teachers and children.

Good quality teaching practices and teachers' inclusive relationships with children are evident. There is an unhurried yet purposeful pace to the programme. Long periods of uninterrupted time enables children to engage in sustained play and extended learning. Teachers encourage children's language development and they skilfully ask questions that extend children's thinking.

The centre environment inspires imaginative play and risk taking. There are many physical challenges for children of all ages. Music is a feature of the programme. Meaningful experiences are provided for children to learn about science, literacy and maths. The programme and documentation of children's learning are strongly linked to Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum.

Teachers regularly reflect on the programme's quality and effectiveness. As a result they have introduced new processes for planning the programme. Planned responses to individual children's ideas and interests now guide the daily programme.

Teachers work well together. Family and whānau are welcomed and a parent committee provides valued stewardship for the centre. The senior teacher provides good leadership, encouraging and supporting teachers to further develop their professional practice and take on leadership roles.

Key Next Steps

Centre leaders agree that key next steps include:

  • further developing teaching practices and the environment to affirm children's languages, cultures and identities

  • ensuring recent changes to legislation are included in centre policies

  • strengthening self-review processes.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Waiheke Community Childcare Centre 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 Waiheke Community Childcare Centre will be in three years.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

10 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


Surfdale, Waiheke Island

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children, including up to 8 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 28 Boys 27

Ethnic composition



other European






Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

April 2016

Date of this report

10 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

December 2012

Education Review

November 2009

Supplementary Review

December 2006

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.