Wesley Kindergarten - 22/02/2019

1 Evaluation of Wesley Kindergarten

How well placed is Wesley Kindergarten to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

Wesley Kindergarten is well placed to promote positive learning outcomes for children.

ERO's findings that support this overall judgement are summarised below.

Background

Wesley Kindergarten is a well-established kindergarten, licensed for 30 children over two years of age. It operates daily from 8.30am to 2.30pm.

The majority of the children attending the kindergarten are of Pacific heritage, and 25 percent are Māori. The centre's recently reviewed philosophy values children's interests and whānau participation. It promotes children's home languages and cultural identities.

The teaching team includes a head teacher, two other registered teachers, one of whom is a long-term reliever, and two teacher aides.

The 2015 ERO report identified that children had a strong sense of belonging and wellbeing. Teachers were providing good support for children's transition to school. Areas to strengthen included leadership and collaborative team practices. Good progress has been made in these areas.

The kindergarten operates as part of the Auckland Kindergarten Association (AKA). The association provides a framework of policies and operational guidelines, support personnel and programmes of professional learning and development. The AKA is establishing new roles and responsibilities at management and governance levels. Recruitment of appropriate personnel to fill identified roles is underway.

This review was part of a cluster of nine reviews in the AKA.

The Review Findings

Children have a strong sense of belonging at the kindergarten. They are eager to settle into the day and actively participate in the programme. Children independently access resources both inside and outdoors. They use resources respectfully and have opportunities to engage in uninterrupted play.

Teachers are respectful and encouraging as they support children's play. They promote children's friendships and tuakana/teina relationships. Teachers implement a play-based learning programme with opportunities for children to develop literacy, numeracy and social competence skills. Children's transition to school is well supported.

Children contribute their ideas to the programme and teachers respond to their interests. The learning programme reflects Te Whāriki 2017, the early childhood curriculum. Teachers identify learning outcomes in their programme planning and increasingly in their assessments. Teachers would like to further develop their assessment, planning, and extension of individual children's learning.

Teachers are inclusive in their practice and know the children well. They are building an understanding of each child's identity as part of their family, culture and community. This is becoming more apparent in documentation, particularly in displays. Teachers are continuing to reflect on and strengthen their bicultural and culturally responsive practices.

Teachers are welcoming and approachable towards children and their whānau. They value whanaungatanga and have adapted flexible ways of working, to be available for whānau. Parents feel comfortable to stay and sense that their mana is respected at the kindergarten. They have opportunities to spend time with their children through being involved in kindergarten initiatives such as the 'Readathon'.

Professional learning and development has enabled teachers to evaluate their practice to improve outcomes for children. Internal evaluation and review has helped to transform many systems and operations. Deliberate improvements have been made to better reflect the community's aspirations and priorities for learning. Teachers are raising the profile of the kindergarten and establishing effective networks with local agencies and organisations.

The newly established leadership and collaborative team culture contribute to the holistic wellbeing of children and whānau. As part of a review of their vision and philosophy, teachers have identified learning that matters, in consultation with whānau. They focus on creating equitable access for all children and families.

Teachers find the professional development offered by the AKA useful and informative. This support has helped them to develop a vision and to contribute to the priorities for the kindergarten.

Key Next Steps

Key next steps include continuing to:

  • reflect on how effectively teachers extend children's interests and learning to promote further complexity in their play
  • strengthen the service's localised curriculum, considering iwi aspirations, history and connections as well as community diversity.

It would be useful for AKA to:

  • monitor that all part-time or relieving teachers are well informed about AKA policies and procedures
  • increase support to improve assessment practices, planning and evaluation
  • continue to support teachers to fully implement Te Whāriki 2017. 

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of Wesley 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.

Steve Tanner
Director Review and Improvement Services Northern
Northern Region

22 February 2019 

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

Mt Roskill, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number

5638

Licence type

Free Kindergarten

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

30 children aged over 2 years

Service roll

35

Gender composition

Boys      22
Girls       13

Ethnic composition

Māori
Niuean
other Pacific groups
other ethnic groups

  8
  5
  9
13

Percentage of qualified teachers

80%

Reported ratios of staff to children

Over 2

1:10

Meets minimum requirements

Review team on site

November 2018

Date of this report

22 February 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

September 2015

Education Review

August 2012

Education Review

May 2009

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.