Wananga Preschool - 08/06/2016

1 Evaluation of Wananga Preschool

How well placed is Wananga Preschool 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.


Wananga Preschool is located in Palmerston North and provides education and care for children aged from two to five years. Sessions are offered five days a week. The centre is licensed for up to 40 tamariki. At this time, 12 Māori children were enrolled at the centre.

The February 2013 ERO report identified areas requiring further improvement including: strengthening assessment planning and evaluation, enhancing self-review and appraisal. The centre continues to make progress in addressing these areas.

The management structure has been reviewed and changes made. As a result, the centre manager oversees this centre and its associated service Rewanui Private Kindergarten.

Day-to-day operation of the centre is now the responsibility of the team leader, who supports two assistant team leaders. Teachers are fully qualified and represent a diverse range of cultures.

Wananga Preschool is a privately owned centre that focuses on offering a whānau orientated, kaupapa Māori based education and care service.

The Review Findings

Tamariki experience a play-based curriculum that is planned to meet their needs and allows them to lead their own learning. Opportunities are taken to use community resources to enrich curriculum experiences. Literacy and mathematics are valued and woven throughout learning experiences.

The philosophy, based on kaupapa Māori aspects, is highly evident throughout the centre. Children are empowered to take responsibility for their wellbeing and that of others. Teachers engage with children and their parents to understand their language and culture, and seek to make experiences meaningful to all.

A whānau like atmosphere enables children to interact confidently with adults and their peers. They are encouraged to be independent and respectful of others and the environment. Teachers support children to problem solve and provide feedback that acknowledges their effort and success.

Te reo me ngā tikanga Māori are highly valued and evident through the centre and the curriculum. Teachers use te reo Māori in general conversations with tamariki. Waiata Māori are popular activities.

Leaders have identified the need to consult with whānau Māori and their Pacific community to ensure aspirations for their children are captured by the centre. ERO agrees. Consultation should assist teachers to define what educational success looks like for these children in this context.

Learning profiles provide a useful record of children's learning and participation in the programme. The introduction of an online assessment tool has enabled parents and whānau to contribute more frequently to their child’s learning profile. Leaders and teachers have identified the need to continue to strengthen their assessment, planning and evaluation processes. ERO agrees with this direction.

Parents have opportunities to contribute and participate in centre activities. Strong relationships with parents and whānau have been nurtured by all staff at the centre. Developing learning partnerships with parents and whānau is a key next step.

Leaders are focused on improving the quality of education and care through an ongoing, systematic approach. A key next step is for leaders to build teachers' evaluative understanding and capability. This should assist them to better evaluate how well their practices impact positively on children's learning.

Children with English as a second language are supported to both develop their home language and to hold meaningful conversations in English. Those with additional learning needs are well supported by teachers and external agencies.

The recently developed appraisal system includes the Practising Teacher Criteria for supporting and developing teaching staff to gain and maintain registration. Key next steps for strengthening this process include:

  • showing progress towards meeting the next steps for development goals
  • undertaking targeted observations of teacher practice.

Leaders are improvement focused. They are beginning to use evidence to inform change. Leaders actively work to grow teachers' practice and develop consistency across the centre. Policies and procedures are regularly reviewed. Documents provide a good level of guidance for staff.

Key Next Steps

Priorities for improvement should continue to include:

  • strengthening Māori and Pacific educational success

  • developing learning partnerships with whānau and parents

  • improving assessment, planning and evaluation

  • building teachers' internal evaluation capability

  • enhancing the appraisal process.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Wananga Preschool 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 Wananga Preschool will be in three years.

Joyce Gebbie

Deputy Chief Review Officer Central

8 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


Palmerston North

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children over two years of age

Service roll


Gender composition

Girls 19, Boys 17

Ethnic composition









Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates


Percentage of qualified teachers

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

April 2016

Date of this report

8 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Supplementary Review

February 2013

Education Review

May 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 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.