Waterview Kindergarten - 14/12/2016

1 Evaluation of Waterview Kindergarten

How well placed is Waterview 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.

Background

Waterview Kindergarten operates as part of the Auckland Kindergarten Association (AKA) that provides policy and operational guidelines, professional development and ongoing support from educational specialists. The kindergarten provides full day and sessional services for up to 40 children from approximately three years of age.

The kindergarten has experienced significant staff change since the 2013 ERO review. The current head teacher took on the role at the beginning of 2016. In addition to the head teacher and three full-time registered teachers the kindergarten employs a part-time teacher aide, a teaching assistant and an administrator.

The kindergarten is located in a relatively new building, next door to the local school. The staff have continued to develop the outdoor environment and to ensure that the learning environments are well resourced, attractive, inviting and challenging.

The philosophy recognises children as competent and confident learners. It promotes partnership with parents/whānau to support children's education and development. It encourages children to learn through collaborative play.

The 2013 ERO report acknowledged the kindergarten's positive learning environment, effective educational programme, and positive relationships within the kindergarten and with parents. These positive aspects have been sustained. Agreed areas for improvement related to assessment and providing more physical challenge. Good progress is being made in these areas.

This review was part of a cluster of seven kindergarten reviews in the Auckland Kindergarten Association. 

The Review Findings

The Kindergarten environment is well laid out and richly resourced. Teachers set up equipment in ways that provoke inquiry and exploration. They ensure that children can access equipment to extend their learning. There are few adult-initiated interruptions to the programme, allowing children to develop their play over extended periods. Mat times are purposeful.

Teachers are respectful and responsive to children and their families. They listen to children and engage them in conversation valuing their contributions. There are many opportunities for children to extend their oral language and thinking skills and to learn in all areas of the curriculum. Children and parents respond well to the high expectations teachers have of children.

Teachers are committed to provide a bicultural curriculum that reflects and respects Te Tiriti o Waitangi. They use te reo Māori within the programme and introduce children to aspect of tikanga Māori.

The kindergarten culture is inclusive. The languages and cultures of all children are acknowledged within the kindergarten environment and are reflected in the programme. Parents are encouraged to share their child's culture with the other children. Teachers are supportive of children with special needs and abilities. They access support and training to help meet the learning needs of these children.

Children experience a programme that promotes high levels of engagement. They engage cooperatively in complex play demonstrating respect for each other and the environment. Children establish friendships and develop self-help and leadership skills.

Parents are well informed about the kindergarten and the programme it provides for children. They sometimes participate and contribute to the activities. They value the input from teachers to their understanding of their child's education and development.

Teachers have effectively revised how they assess children's learning and plan the educational programme. They are more regularly assessing the learning of individual children and planning how they can extend their learning.

Parents are encouraged to share their aspirations for their children with teachers. Staff consider this useful input when planning the programme. Programme evaluation could now be strengthened by teachers considering how well the programme has helped children achieve the intended outcomes.

Teachers work with the school staff and children to ensure that the transition to school for the five year olds is smooth. Parents report that children move to school with confidence, already knowing some of the adults and children at the school.

The kindergarten is well led by an experienced head teacher. She acknowledges the strengths of her staff and supports them to work well as a team and take leadership roles.

The kindergarten staff have developed a strategic approach to ongoing improvement. Regular internal evaluation informs the strategic plan. Parents and children are consulted as part of the review process.

Key Next Steps

The staff have identified the kindergarten's key next steps through the goals outlined in their 2015 - 2017 business plan. They are working on and monitor progress towards achieving these goals.

The AKA is continuing to review and refine its policies and procedures, including those for teacher appraisal and the endorsement of teachers’ practising certificates.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Waterview 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 Waterview Kindergarten will be in three years.

Graham Randell

Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern

14 December 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

Waterview, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

46023

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

40 children, including up to 0 aged under 2

Service roll

64

Gender composition

Boys 38 Girls 26

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Samoan

Tongan

Indian

Afghani

Cook Island Māori

Kiribati

other ethnicities

9

34

4

4

3

2

2

2

4

Percentage of qualified teachers

0-49% 50-79% 80%

Based on funding rates

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

September 2016

Date of this report

14 December 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

August 2013

Education Review

April 2010

Education Review

October 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.