There is early childhood education where the focus is on image and making money with little concern for children as people and their rights – at best this supports child development and provides a safe ‘holding pen’ while at worst it is harmful to children mentally, emotionally and/or physically. Then there is early childhood education that consistently delights children and their parents / caregivers. This kind of early childhood education is underpinned by a personal and collective commitment to excellence among the teaching team, professional leader and service provider. It is recognised that excellence is a willingness to learn, an openness to critique, and a means of fulfilling a special obligation to children and families to serve them with respect, honesty and integrity. Essential to the achievement of this though is a positive work place culture, good working conditions for staff, and a service leader who cultivates proactive attitudes and respects educator and staff contributions ~ Dr Sarah Alexander (ChildForum, 2015)
Which services are featured and rated?
All recognised ECE services licensed with the Ministry of Education and funded by government may be included in the My ECE directory and awarded a Star-rating (this includes: kindergartens, childcare centres also known by a variety of other names such as learning centres and daycare, drop-in crèches, playcentres, language nests, etc.). Note that any service operators known to be behind or engage in political or business lobbying for personal gain against the best interests of children and the early childhood profession will not be listed and rated in the My ECE directory.
How can my service achieve a higher rating?
A star is awarded for each of the 5 features listed below.
- Have a high level of qualified staff - 80%+ (or show how it might be meeting this requirement in a different way e.g. in a playcentre which is a parent-led service). READ MORE
- Not have more than 50 children attending at one time or be a small home-based agency with no more than 5 home-based licences. READ MORE
- Have no major problems indicated by ERO in its latest review of the service READ MORE
- Survey parents using The NZ ECE Survey of Parent Satisfaction and Experience©ChildForum at least every 2 years. READ MORE
- Receive consistently positive user reviews on ECE . READ MORE
A 5-Star rated service will have all 5 of the above features, a 4-Star service will have 4 of these features, and so on.
Why provide ratings?
1. Parents, caregivers, community members, people considering applying for jobs, and organisations looking to give grants or other assistance can make more informed decisions by learning how the service they are interested in rates and how it compares with other local services and nationally.
2. ECE service managers and professional leaders can see at a glance how their service rates and be motivated to improve and maintain their service’s rating.
How are the ratings compiled?
The ratings are compiled using statistical data and information from:
- The Ministry of Education
- The Education Review Office
- The Early Childhood National Organisation, ChildForum
- News reports and user reviews
Should a service's rating for a feature be incorrect or out-of-date, please inform MY ECE. Provide evidence (e.g. the date of the last ERO report and a copy if it is not available yet online. To show the percentage of qualified teachers provide copies of the two last funding claims showing the service is on the 80%+ funding band).
Can I rate and give feedback on a service that a child in my family is attending or used to attend?
Yes! To do this go to the service’s listing on My ECE, click on the ‘Review and Rate’ tab at the top of the listing page and click on the number of Stars (1 to 5) you want to give the service and type in your comment then click on the blue box 'Submit Review'.
What if I disagree with a comment that a user has made?
You are welcome to add a comment in reply to a comment that a user has posted. You must use your real name in leaving a reply and state the particular comment you are replying to. Replies must directly concern the content of the posted comment and not be for the purpose of self-promotion or advertising. Please be respectful of the person’s views and experiences you are responding to.
Because the user rating system is not designed to allow for replies to be published directly under a user’s review – if the reply is from the owner/manager/or person working at the early childhood service we may publish it within the My ECE review box at the top of the page. Replies from parents and other users may be published as separate submitted reviews.
Advice for Parents
Choose to use an ECE service with a Star-rating of 3 Stars or better if one is available in your area.
A 3-Star service is a good average.
A 4- or 5-Star service is recommended to parents looking for a high rating service.
Read the reviews / comments posted by other parents about the service.
Caution: It is strongly recommended you stay with your child at a service that has a below average rating and / or has received negative reviews from users within the last 12 months.