Smart kids educare ERO report 2017

Smart Kids Educare – 21/04/2017
• On this page:
• 1 Evaluation of Smart Kids Educare
• 2 Information about the Early Childhood Service
• 3 General Information about Early Childhood Reviews
1 Evaluation of Smart Kids Educare
How well placed is Smart Kids Educare 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.
Smart Kids Educare is a privately owned centre in Balmoral, which opened in 2014. It provides education and care for up to 40 children from birth to five years of age, including 10 children up to two years of age. The centre caters for different age groups in separate rooms when appropriate. Children are able to play in mixed-age groups.
The centre’s philosophy is underpinned by the belief that early childhood lays the foundation for future learning and development. The programme incorporates the principles of TeWhāriki, the early childhood curriculum. A feature of the philosophy is that cultural diversity and home languages are valued and supported in the centre’s programme.
The owner/manager works closely with a team of four teachers to lead and manage daily operations. Teachers are responsible for leading and monitoring the age group that they are responsible for. Children and teachers reflect the centre’s multicultural community.
This is the first ERO report for Smart Kids Educare.
The Review Findings
Children play happily in groups and alone with many opportunities for social interaction. They have formed friendships with each other and with teachers. Children enjoy a sense of belonging and understand the routines and teachers’ expectations. They demonstrate tuakana/teina relationships and respect others’ home languages when negotiating their play.
Different rooms allow for a variety of activities and focus areas. Children up to two years of age have the choice of a spacious room or to play with other age groups. They experience positive, sensitive and responsive interactions and care. There is a covered outdoor space and an outdoor area for all age groups. Teachers ensure that equipment is easily accessible for children and that displays are attractive and celebrate children’s creativity.
Teachers provide a structured programme based on activities. They also respond to children’s needs and suggestions. Warm interactions support children’s curiosity and enable them to have meaningful dialogue with teachers and with each other. Children’s opinions are valued and documented. Teachers’ questioning helps children to make decisions.
There is a positive commitment to promoting bicultural practices. Te reo Māori is promoted through greetings, karakia and waiata. Teachers could strengthen their use of tikanga and te reo Māori and continue to develop a deeper understanding of bicultural partnerships in Aotearoa New Zealand.
Teachers plan together to respond to children’s interests. Individual children’s assessment is recorded in attractive portfolios that children can easily access when they want to revisit their learning. Teachers recognise children’s individual styles and could use these more to assess their development. Most of the portfolios include very good feedback from parents, who enthusiastically comment on and affirm their children’s learning.
The manager and teachers are knowledgeable about parents’ aspirations for children and value their contributions. They have established very good partnerships with parents that are focused on children’s learning. Teachers provide very good support for children when they transition into the centre and when they move on to school.
There are good processes for ongoing improvements through internal evaluation. These are well documented and understood by teachers. Many centre practices have been reviewed and changes made to enhance the programme for children.
The owner/manager leads with great enthusiasm and is involved in the daily operations and strategic direction of the centre. As a new centre owner, she collaborates with an external mentor to guide her leadership practice and has focused on establishing routines and systems. Teachers have responsibility for areas in the programme and are encouraged to build their leadership through opportunities for professional learning.
The owner/manager should now develop a review schedule for streamlining, monitoring and updating policies and procedures. She could also develop a strategic plan that clearly informs annual planning, promotes the centre’s philosophy and is focused on enhancing outcomes for children.
Key Next Steps
The owner has identified that to improve practice she needs to:
• strengthen teaching practices to support more child initiated learning and to build on children’s own ideas
• improve assessment, programme planning and evaluation
• establish more effective management systems, including strategic planning.
Management Assurance on Legal Requirements
Before the review, the staff and management of Smart Kids Educare 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.
To improve current practice, the owner should ensure that policies and procedures reflect the requirements of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014.
Next ERO Review
When is ERO likely to review the service again?
The next ERO review of Smart Kids Educare will be in three years.
Graham Randell
Deputy Chief Review Officer Northern
21 April 2017
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 NgāPou 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 Balmoral, Auckland
Ministry of Education profile number 46544
Licence type Education & Care Service
Licensed under Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008
Number licensed for 40 children, including up to 10 aged under 2
Service roll 30
Gender composition Boys 15 Girls 15
Ethnic composition Māori
other 2
Percentage of qualified teachers
0-49% 50-79% 80%
Based on funding rates 80%
Reported ratios of staff to children Under 2 1:4 Better than minimum requirements
Over 2 1:8 Better than minimum requirements
Review team on site February 2017
Date of this report 21 April 2017
Most recent ERO report(s)
No previous ERO reports
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 NgāPou Here:
PouWhakahaere – how the service determines its vision, philosophy and direction to ensure positive outcomes for children
PouĀrahi – 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
Tikangawhakaako – 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 NgāPou Here refer toERO’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.
• Smart Kids Educare – 21/04/2017