YMCA Early Learning Centre Manurewa - 23/01/2019

1 Evaluation of YMCA Early Learning Centre Manurewa

How well placed is YMCA Early Learning Centre Manurewa to promote positive learning outcomes for children?

Not well placed

Requires further development

Well placed

Very well placed

The centre requires external support to improve the quality of the programmes for children, and to understand and meet the requirements of the Education Council and the Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care 2008.

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


YMCA Early Learning Centre Manurewa is one of five centres under the umbrella of YMCA of Auckland Inc. Early in 2018 the service's group manager for early learning services, left her position. At the time of this ERO review the position remains vacant. The review of three centres has identified significant areas for development.

YMCA Early learning Centre Manurewa provides both sessional and full-day options for children and their families. The centre is able to cater for up to 35 children in a mixed age setting. It operates in a purpose-built facility on the grounds of Manurewa West Primary School. Families and children have a diverse range of cultural backgrounds. While most teachers are qualified, they have not, as yet, reached full registration as practising teachers. The YMCA provides a framework of policies, procedures and documentation to guide centre operations.

This review was part of a cluster of three reviews in the YMCA Early Learning Centres Inc.

The Review Findings

Children are settled and confident. They have responsive, respectful conversations with teachers and each other. Centre values of respect and caring are evident in the tuakana/teina relationships amongst children.

Teachers greet children and their whānau warmly on arrival. They converse with whānau, and are calm, positive and encouraging with children. The environment is attractive and resources are generally good quality and plentiful. Children regularly visit the ngahere, the local native bush, as a way of connecting with nature. This experience encourages adventurous play and opportunities for children to build resilience.

Bicultural understanding and knowledge is developing in the centre. Teachers speak, and children respond to, te reo Māori as part of conversations. Resources reflect the bicultural heritage of Aotearoa New Zealand, and displays celebrate the language.

Teachers acknowledge and include whānau aspirations in their planning. Whānau are comfortable in the centre and share information about their cultures and home experiences. Centre staff assist and support whānau in a number of ways to manage day-to-day challenges.

Key Next Steps

In order to improve systems and practices, it is necessary for leaders and teachers to:

  • grow and embed their knowledge and practices in relation to the principles and strands of Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum

  • develop focused internal evaluation to gauge the quality of teaching and learning

  • build their understanding about effective assessment, planning and evaluation

  • develop a plan that outlines centre goals and aims for teachers' work with children

  • implement teacher appraisals that are focused on improved outcomes for children and are aligned to the Education Council requirements.

Management Assurance on Legal Requirements

Before the review, the staff and management of YMCA Early Learning Centre Manurewa 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.

Actions for compliance

ERO identified areas of non-compliance relating to the management provided by YMCA of Auckland Inc. To meet requirements the service needs to:

  • establish and implement a system of regular appraisal and provide professional development in leadership for centre managers that reflect the requirements of the Education Council

  • ensure that properties under its care are maintained to provide adequate education and care for children

  • ensure the service's curriculum is informed by assessment, planning and evaluation

  • monitor and evaluate teaching and learning practices to meet the requirements of Te Whāriki, and the Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Services 2008

  • develop a strategic plan to guide its early childhood services.

Licensing Criteria for Early Childhood Education and Care Centres 2008, Regulation 47(1) (a), (b) (ii), (c) (i), (e), Regulation 43, (1) (a), (i), (iii), (iv), (vi), (b), C1, C2, C3, C4, C6, C11, PF5, PF13, GMA8

Development Plan Recommendation

ERO recommends that the service, in consultation with the Ministry of Education, develops a plan to address the key next steps and actions outlined in this report.

Next ERO Review

When is ERO likely to review the service again?

The next ERO review of YMCA Early Learning Centre Manurewa will be within two years.

Steve Tanner

Director Review and Improvement Services

Te Tai Raki - Northern Region

23 January 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


Manurewa, Auckland

Ministry of Education profile number


Licence type

Education & Care Service

Licensed under

Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008

Number licensed for

35 children, including up to 10 aged under 2

Service roll


Gender composition

Boys 25 Girls 19

Ethnic composition

Cook Island Māori
other ethnic groups


Percentage of qualified teachers


Reported ratios of staff to children

Under 2


Better than minimum requirements

Over 2


Better than minimum requirements

Review team on site

September 2018

Date of this report

23 January 2019

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

October 2013

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.