Waitara & District Community Childcare Centre Inc. - 21/03/2018

1 Evaluation of Waitara & District Community Childcare Centre Inc.

How well placed is Waitara & District Community Childcare Centre Inc. 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.


Waitara & Districts Community Childcare Centre Inc. is a non-profit parent cooperative, operating a full day service. It is situated in Waitara, within large grounds that allow for varied learning experiences.

The centre is licensed for 40 children, including 12 up to two years of age. At the time of review there are 54 children enrolled and 20 are Māori.

Staffing has been stable since the February 2015 ERO report. There is a mix of qualified, in-training and untrained teachers. The service is governed by a parent committee and daily operations are led by the centre manager.

The previous ERO report identified that the key next steps were in relation to: the centre philosophy; assessment, planning and evaluation practices; self- review and teacher inquiry; and the impact of teachers’ practices and learning on the quality of children’s outcomes.

Continuous progress has been made to address these areas.

The Review Findings

Centre management and teachers ensure the philosophy, based on the belief that it takes a community to care and educate, is reflected in the centre and is enacted through:

  • children's access to an inclusive curriculum that acknowledges identities, language and culture
  • sensitive and flexible teaching practices that are responsive to the rhythms and cues of infants
  • recorded stories, Taonga Pukapuka, that reflect teacher knowledge and understanding of children's development
  • seeking parent aspirations and encouraging feedback on children's progress
  • teaching practices that support children to understand and contribute to decisions about their learning
  • strategies that promote positive behaviour for learning, social skills and competencies
  • an established tuakana teina approach that values and fosters friendships and engagement between children and is utilised to enhance their confidence in learning activities.

Experienced leadership is committed to ensuring positive outcomes for all children. Staff are encouraged to contribute to decision making. Since the previous ERO review, priorities have been to focus on developing a new philosophy, new assessment planning and evaluation processes, and an internal evaluation framework that meets the needs of the centre. The goals align and the strategic intent is clear.

Staff self-review practice uses data, observations of children and critical self-reflection, to show progress towards achieving goals. The internal evaluation design process has been carefully and purposefully developed with support from external providers. The review process demonstrates an increased understanding for evaluation, for both accountability and improvement. Continuing to strengthen a shared understanding of evaluation by staff should further enhance positive outcomes for children.

A clearly documented appraisal process places teachers' inquiry foremost and aligns with the centre's strategic goals and internal evaluation process. Ongoing professional learning and development supports teachers to have the skills and knowledge necessary to promote and provide good quality early childhood education and care, in conjunction with the centre's strategic goals and observed interests of children.

The parent governing committee has a clear understanding of roles and responsibilities. Policies and procedures usefully underpin practices in all aspects of this service. Working with centre management, the committee demonstrates commitment to developing teachers' capability to respond to children's learning. A high level of relational trust is evident amongst all involved.

Key Next Steps

Management and teachers should:

  • continue to strengthen internal evaluation, to show the impact of actions on outcomes for learners
  • further develop the appraisal process, focusing on improving teachers' practice
  • continue to build teachers' understanding of te ao Māori perspectives across the curriculum.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Waitara & District Community Childcare Centre Inc. 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 Waitara & District Community Childcare Centre Inc. will be in three years.

Alan Wynyard
Deputy Chief Review Officer Central (Acting)

Te Tai Pokapū - Central Region

21 March 2018 

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

40 children, including up to 12 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 29, Girls 25

Ethnic composition



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

January 2018

Date of this report

21 March 2018

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

February 2015

Education Review

April 2012

Supplementary Review

June 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 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.