Swings + Roundabouts Autumn 2022

PLEASE SHARE THIS MAGAZINE! If you know anyone who would like to read the interesting and informative articles in Swings & Roundabouts, pass it on! ISSN 1179-688X (Print) • ISSN 1179-7517 (Online) PO Box 5649, Lambton Quay, Wellington 6145 AUTUMN 2022 CARING FOR YOUR TEAM THROUGH KNOWLEDGE SHARING NETWORK PLANNING – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW Supporting language diversity in ECE OPTING INTO PAY PARITY

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Inside this issue... Editor Trudi Sutcliffe Editorial Enquiries publications@ecc.org.nz Advertising Enquiries Catherine Norton Waterford Press Ltd PO Box 37346, Christchurch, New Zealand. Phone: 03 983 5526 Email: catherine@waterfordpress.co.nz www.waterfordpress.co.nz Production Co-ordinator Luke Lynch Content Co-ordinator Patti Brown Graphic Designer Liki Udam & Anton Gray Subscription Enquiries Early Childhood Council PO Box 5649, Lambton Quay, Wellington 6145 Phone: 0800 742 742 Email: admin@ecc.org.nz www.ecc.org.nz DISCLAIMER: A cancellation fee of 25% may be charged if the booking is cancelled after the sales cut off date. Your Media Consultant will be able to provide that information if you are not aware of it. Applications for advertising in Swings & Roundabouts will be considered from the following: 1) Early childhood centres and/or their associated management groups that are members of the Early Childhood Council. 2) Trade and service suppliers to the early childhood industry. 3) Government and not-for-profit organisations. Please note: Some industries may be restricted due to exclusive arrangements with the Early Childhood Council. Please note: We do not accept advertisements for staff vacancies. All advertising content is at the sole discretion of the editor. All advertising will be at the rates determined by Waterford Press Ltd. Swings & Roundabouts is produced by the Early Childhood Council and is sent free of charge to all independent early childhood centres in New Zealand. The information contained in Swings & Roundabouts is of a general nature only. Readers should not act on the basis of the information it contains without seeking advice for their own specific circumstances. The views and opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily represent the view of the Early Childhood Council Incorporated. All content in this magazine is copyright and may not be reproduced in any form without the written permission of the editor. Swings & Roundabouts is published quarterly for the Early Childhood Council by Waterford Press Ltd. 7 FROM THE EDITOR 8 CEO’S MESSAGE 10 ECC UPDATE 12 OPTING INTO PAY PARITY 14 SO YOU KNOW 16 MEET ECC EXEC MEMBER: AIMEE HAWKE 18 NETWORK LIKE AN EXPERT 20 CARING FOR YOUR TEAM THROUGH KNOWELDGE SHARING 24 NETWORK PLANNING – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW 26 LANGUAGE DIVERSITY IN ECE 28 SUPPORTING ADDITIONAL LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT 30 TRACE MORONEY: TALKING ABOUT FEELINGS 34 RESOURCE REVIEWS 41 LAST LAUGH March 2022 { 5 }

FROM THE Editor Kia ora koutou katoa, Ki te kotahi te kākaho, ka whati; ki te kāpuia, e kore e whati. - Kingi Tūkāroto Matutaera Pōtatau Te Wherowhero Tāwhiao If a reed stands alone, it can be broken, if it is in a group, it cannot. (Alone we are vulnerable, but together we are unbreakable.) This year’s ECC Conference is all about growing together with a focus on a collaborative approach for future success for all in early childhood education. To grow as a profession we need to bring together owners, managers, teachers, parents, communities, agencies, and the government. And as the last two years has shown us, this has become increasingly apparent, from the uncertainty of Covid-19, alongside other factors such as the disparity between different funding models, pay between teachers and equal pay for equal work, and issues such as a shortage of qualified teachers. If you want to become part of the solution then this conference is for you. For further information keep an eye on the ECC website, www.ecc.org.nz and save the date, 16 & 17 September 2022. Sharing ideas is one form of collaboration, and John Maher, a centre owner from Manawatū, has kindly shared his thoughts on opting into Pay Parity. To read John’s tips and insights head to page 12. On pages 16 & 17 we meet Aimee Hawke, the newest member of the ECC Executive. Aimee’s aspirations for bringing about change and support for our sector in this role and within her own early learning centres is evident and inspirational. The word ‘networking’ is an ugly word for most, but as Phil Sales explains from page 18, networking is about connection, ongoing collaboration with other people and going to events with clear goals of what success will look like for you. Collaboration is also one of the key points in Tiffany Smith’s article, Caring for our team through knowledge sharing from page 20. Tiffany suggests some helpful tips on how knowledge can be shared, managed, and where to look for sharing opportunities. Well worth a read if you are leading a team. Network Planning is an upcoming issue in ECE, and it’s important to be aware of how this may impact you if you have any intentions of establishing a new service or expanding an existing licence in the future. To find out more go to page 24. With Ministry of Education (2021) numbers showing that at least 73 languages were spoken across New Zealand’s early childhood services, how do early childhood teachers best support young children in their cultures, languages, and identities in a multi-lingual environment? The ECC’s Senior Policy Officer, Katina Beauchamp helps answer this question in her article, Language diversity in Aotearoa New Zealand’s early childhood services on page 26. Thank you so much to our autumn contributors, your support is always appreciated. If you’d like to contribute an article to Swings & Roundabouts, we’d love to hear from you. We like to share positive ECE management and teaching stories to inspire and inform our readers. Any topic you would like to write on will be considered. Kia noho haumaru. Ngā mihi Trudi Sutcliffe Editor Specialised business insurance for over 1500 childcare centres Get your insurance sorted 0800 765 429 childproof.co.nz March 2022 { 7 }

I think something needs to be fixed in the way we are thinking about early childhood education in New Zealand. In January, the Government announced that schools would receive 5,000 portable air cleaners, and that on top of this, there would be 2,500 CO2 monitors so schools can test the ventilation of classrooms. The Ministry of Education issued guidance for schools that is critically important right now because ventilation is one of the key public health measures deployed to manage COVID-19. It gets increasingly more important with the cooler months approaching. In fact, out of the seven public health measures that apply in all early childhood centres – improving ventilation probably has the most potential to help reduce the spread of Omicron in your centres. I’ll explain the other six measures briefly first, as this is somewhat relative. Vaccination: in early childhood, what many regards as the top public health measure – vaccination - is not yet readily available: all 150,000 children enrolled in early childhood centres are unvaccinated. Yes, early childhood teachers are required to be vaccinated if they are on site. At the ECC we have heard from many of our members about the teachers they lost who would sooner leave the profession than get vaccinated. It is painful for centre managers to lose their staff, more so as we are in a sustained teacher supply crisis. “Good”, one public health expert said to me when I told them about what I felt was a surprisingly high loss of early childhood teachers in our sector. Their view was we don’t need teachers with anti-vaccination beliefs teaching our youngest children. “Stay home, if you are sick (and get tested)” is the next measure. In the early childhood context, you need to think about this one. It’s quite different for teachers, relieving teachers and managers who have their sense of professional duty. Compare that sense of duty to what it must be like for young children themselves – who, let’s face it, ordinarily get runny noses, sore tummies and coughs. ECC gets regular questions from centre managers about this – and we remind them that unless there has been a test or the GP has advised it is safe, they need to treat all COVID symptoms as potentially COVID. No complacency. But I think you get the point. This measure is pretty weak in the scheme of things in an early learning centre. Some people (adults/children) have few visible symptoms, but they can still be sick. Even between men and women, we can observe some stark differences. In terms of assessments of sickness, for example. They are subjective assessments that we make MESSAGE CEO's ECC ran surveys from October 2021 up until recently in Jan 2022 – and the trend of centres losing teachers has remained steady. Even with the booster. But this is all relative. I think what’s happened in early learning is substantial because roughly 40% of members surveyed lost one or more teacher (many lost significantly more). Whereas the publicly accepted schooling statistic was in the region of 1-2% of all schoolteachers. That doesn’t sound like nearly as many. Hold on a minute. Perhaps there is devil in the detail: estimates of total teachers in compulsory schooling are in the region of 70,000. So, 2% would be 700-1,400 schoolteachers. That’s still a lot of teachers! Government should maintain the register of all teachers including unqualified teachers. Without this information we just have surveys and estimates. March 2022 { 8 }

every day. I wonder whether when I catch COVID will it be my worst-ever form of “man flu”?! I have had some pretty serious doses of the flu in my life, so I’m not completely having you on. Point is, anything based on lots of subjective assessments will inherently be quite variable. “Basic hygiene” is next. By hygiene, they really should have said adults should try to wash their hands all the time because no one else will be doing it properly (perhaps they should have named it that). It is especially important if one comes in direct contact with another person or goes to the bathroom. In early childhood, we are seeking to instil good hygiene practices amongst the children, but they are not necessarily practices we expect children to be good at already. So not likely to be a highly effective measure overall. “Face coverings” isn’t politically correct anymore as pretty much you have to wear masks (if you have to wear anything). To be clear: masks are not required in early learning settings – but recently the guidance has been toughened up for relief teachers. Parents and other visitors must wear masks. ECC goes further and says you should positively encourage those who want to wear masks (ie read about nudge theory) and you should try to model good mask-wearing behaviour at drop-off and entry points for your parents and caregivers. If you do the opposite this may be discouraging for the parents. You need parents to comply (it helps keep your centre safer). There’s not much to add about the physical distancing measure other than it only really applies as a protective measure for the adults working in early learning. Not much physical distancing is expected to happen between children. This leaves the last of the seven measures: ventilation. My motivation for writing my column in this issue of Swings & Roundabouts! Ventilation has the most potential to be effective, in my opinion, because you can readily improve the ventilation of any space through simple techniques like opening windows and doors. Those air purifiers are only really useful where you don’t have a room with those common ventilation alternatives. We know that some early learning centres have permanently shut windows because otherwise, the window would become an even more serious health and safety risk from falls. Without good windows, you should start to consider what your other alternatives are – but remember there must be a door and you can use fans for ventilation too. I have suggested to ECC members they review ventilation in sleep rooms as a priority. So what I think we need to fix is the thinking that government support on ventilation should only be provided to schools, and not to early learning centres. To date, the school’s ventilation guidance has not yet been shared by the Ministry with the early learning sector. ECC has shared it widely with our members along with further support. I would go further and say (yes I have already said this publicly) that Government should provide better options for early childhood providers like free air purifiers and CO2 monitors. In schools, the Crown owns the buildings and so the Ministry has long exercised a firm kaitiaki role for schools only – but ownership is not everything and public accountability applies equally. I think it’s public accountability which means we should expect the government to extend its support into other settings like early learning centres. Yes, even though centres are owned by businesses, community organisations, charities or larger corporates. What really matters is children are vulnerable in all these places and nevertheless we must keep them safe. Please show your support. The school’s ventilation guidance is publicly accessible here: https://www.education. govt.nz/school/property-and-transport/ health-and-safety-management/ventilation/ Ngā mihi Simon March 2022 { 9 }

ECC Update ECC Update Nau mai, haere mai The Early Childhood Council (ECC) warmly welcomes the following early learning centres that recently joined the ECC: ● Step Ahead, Whangārei ● Jigsaw Preschool, Christchurch ● Mt Wellies Childcare, Auckland ● Lightbulb Learning Care Centre, Auckland ● Rewanui Early Learning Centre, Gisborne ● AppleSeed Educare, Auckland ● Nurture and Bloom Early Learning Centre, Auckland ● Waiuku Learning Space, Waiuku ● Kainga Tamariki Early Leaning Centre, Kihikihi ● Ohope Beach Montessori Preschool, Ōhope ● Amberley Community Preschool Incorporated (Amberley Community Preschool & Amberley Community Prep School), Amberley ● Little Steps ECE Centre, Stratford ● First Steps Kids Academy, Hamilton ● Your Place Childcare, Auckland ● Whitianga Explorers Limited, (Mercury Bay Preschool & Peanuts Early Learning Centre), Whitianga ● Little Beans Preschool, Christchurch ● Shine Montessori Educare, Avalon & Waiwhetu ● Ako Adventures, Auckland ● Rocket Kids Early Learning Centre, Auckland ● Elim Early Learning Centre Cambridge, Cambridge ● The Tot Spot, Tauranga ● Play and Learn, Clarks Beach, Fairfield, King Street & Karaka West, Auckland ● Pīwakawaka Early Learning Centre, Christchurch ● Omaka Early Learning, Blenheim ● Kiwi Clubhouse Learning Centre, Hāwera ● Havelock North Early Learning Centre, Havelock North ● Bright Horizons New Zealand Childcare, Drury ● Four Seasons Rudolf Steiner Kindergarten, Taupō ● Te Puna Reo o Pukehinahina, Tauranga ● Briston Holdings Ltd (Before Six Early Childhood Centre & Play to Learn E.L.C), Northland ● Catlins Early Learning Centre, Southland (Provisional) 2022 ECC Conference: Napier 16 & 17 September The ECC is excitedly planning this year’s conference with a focus on ‘Growing Together: A collaborative approach to success in early childhood education in New Zealand’. Over the two days, there will be a variety of amazing keynote speakers and informative workshops for centre management, owners and teachers. The venue will be at the Napier War Memorial Centre. The ECC want to give their members something positive to look forward to. To find out more visit www.ecc.org.nz. Save the date. ECC Events With the changes happening around the motu with Covid-19, the ECC has created many two-hour online Professional Development opportunities for centre managers/owners and teachers online! Management workshop topics include Governance for ECE Centre Boards (designed specifically for committee and board members in ECE Centres), Effective Marketing for ECE centres, Continuous Quality Improvement and Service Reviews, and much much more. These online management workshops cost $99+GST (ECC members) or $199+GST (non-members). Teaching workshops include Child Protection in ECE, Early Literacy, Inquiries, Assessment, Self-Review, Internal and External Evaluation in ECE (making sense of the jargon and practical advice in making connections to teachers’ work), Physical Health & Movement in ECE, Professional Growth Cycle and many more. The online teaching workshops cost $65+gst for ECC Members or $95+gst for non-members. To find out more about what’s on offer go to, https://www.ecc.org.nz (look under Events / Workshops) or alternatively go straight to the Calendar of Events https://www.ecc.org.nz/events/ to book your spot. March 2022 { 10 }

On Friday 17 Dec the ECC publicly released the ECC’s statement of public health objectives in early learning during COVID-19 with support from leading New Zealand epidemiologist Dr Jin Russell. The ECC sees the safety of children as paramount and therefore encourage you all to read it so you know what to say when you have parents or teaching staff questioning whether it is safe to be operating early learning during the current pandemic. You can find the objectives here, https://www.ecc.org.nz/ Category?Action=View&Category_ id=622 (under Resources / Public Resources). A leading group of health experts have released an excellent report on keeping schools open. We have encouraged them to do a similar report for early childhood education. You can read the report here: https://cdn.auckland.ac.nz/ assets/auckland/news-andopinion/2022/01/Russell%20 et%20al%20%202022%20 Schools%20and%20 COVID-19%20Keeping%20 schools%20open%20(002).pdf The ECC’s next priority in this area is working with the Ministry of Education on supporting early learning centres to identify early learning accommodation with potential ventilation issues. ECC members-only website resources updated We have updated the following content for you to access on the ECC website: ● Emergency Response Procedures: an important update has been made to ensure armed offender-type lockdown situations are appropriately managed. It is important that all early learning centres have identified an individual who can be contacted if there is a sudden lockdown emergency (ie armed offender, not COVID-19!). When your key person changes you need to be proactive and advise your local MoE Regional Office (ie for each centre – it is not suitable to have one key contact for members with centres based across multiple areas). You can access this under Tools & Resources or under Centre Support / Policy Management). ● Vaccination policies for your staff: COVID-19 and the general ECC vaccination policy have both been updated (recent Vaccine mandate laws necessitated updates). Find under Centre Support / Policy Management. ● Individual Employment Agreements – permanent, was recently updated by Buddle Findlay. We have now updated the various other agreements: fixed 12+ months; 6-12 months; fixed under 6 months; casual. These can be found both in the alphabetical list and under ‘Managing People’. ECC Statement of Public Health Objectives in Early Learning during COVID-19 FEELING OVERWHELMED? Take 5 breaths... then name the following: 5 things that you can SEE in the room 4 things that you can FEEL/TOUCH right now 3 things that you can HEAR 2 things that you can SMELL now 1 thing that you can TASTE A perfect exercise for both adults and children alike! March 2022 { 11 }

Opting in to Pay Parity with the late advice, complicated maths and strong desire for fairness and wanting to pay teachers what they deserve made it a difficult decision for many of our members. We asked John Maher, a centre owner from Manawatū, to share some thoughts with ECC members on opting In to Pay Parity, based on his own circumstances. We hope these are useful and offer some tips you can apply to your own situation, whether you’ve already opted in or are still weighing it up. Mindset ● Keep a positive attitude by deciding on your attitude and encourage the same with your staff. Avoid those with a negative attitude ● Limit stress by recognising what you have no control over ● Be proactive not reactive, distinguish between the urgent and important ● Make lists and get started. Team work ● Learn to negotiate with an integrated approach, setting good relationships as a priority ● Prepare to be successful, but expect speed bumps along the way ● Consult with staff, review employment contracts with a view to making changes to benefit all ● Don’t forget - you are the leader of a team. The numbers ● Understand the benefit and cost of opting in ● Develop good financial skills to set cash flows, and know where you are and where you expect to get ● Manage your resources - time, people and money ● Have people in your team, a good banker, accountant and lawyer, but go prepared and don’t waste your time and money ● Identify what you need to know, ask someone who knows, and don’t get distracted ● Invest in yourself, improve communication, negotiation and financial skills Final thoughts ● With a positive attitude enjoy yourself, expect a good day, reflect on achievements, take time out. Tomorrow is another day. ● NOTHING IS EASY, BUT WHO WANTS NOTHING! In 2022 the ECC will be continuing to support the implementation of pay parity for our members. The principle of paying teachers more is widely undisputed, however, the ways that government can approach any funding or regulatory change can be done with greater or lesser care – the latter leads to unreasonably burdensome administrative process (i.e. distracts early learning centres from their core business). One member’s ways of staying positive about opting in to Pay Parity March 2022 { 12 }

YOU SO KNOW Responding to Diverse Cultures With Aotearoa being more ethnically and culturally diverse than ever before, ERO has undertaken work to understand examples of good culturally responsive teaching in early childhood education. ERO’s report, Responding to Diverse Cultures: Good Practice in Homebased Early Childhood Services, looks at how children’s cultures and languages can be reflected in everyday practice, supporting their learning and wellbeing. We know that good education is not one-size-fits-all, and when working with children and families that are a different cultural context to their own, kaiako need to take deliberate actions to respond to the child’s unique way of being, knowing, and doing. Culturally responsive teaching affirms and builds on children’s cultures and languages to promote rich, relevant learning experiences. Drawn from home-based ECE settings, this new report is a collection of useful examples to inspire and motivate kaiako to grow their ability in culturally responsive teaching. Reminder about the availability of EAP services There are free (centrally funded) services for all staff (incl. regular relievers and admin) will continue to be available until June 2022. Up to three one-on-one counselling sessions available, either face-to-face or by phone. These services are not replacing existing services, but supplementing them. Information on the Ministry’s wellbeing package:https://www.education.govt. nz/covid-19/advice-for-everyone/ workforce-wellbeing-package/ Further detail available here: https:// www.eapservices.co.nz/ Mandatory reporting requirements for dismissals The Teaching Council in their December e-newsletter reminded all educational leaders, such as centre managers / owners their legal requirements under section 489 of the Education and Training Act 2020 (the Act) regarding dismissals and mandatory reporting. If you’ve needed to dismiss a teacher from their teaching position this year for any reason, you will need to fill in a mandatory report through the Teaching Council. Please note, you do not need to complete a mandatory report for a teacher who has resigned, unless there was a conduct or competence issue raised within the last 12 months. For more information on when and how to submit a mandatory report, go here, https://teachingcouncil.nz/professionalpractice/competence-concerns/reporting-aconcern/#mandatory Principles of Practice - Education Evaluation for Improvement in Schools and Early Childhood Services In November 2021, the Education Review Office (ERO) published Principles of Practice: Education Evaluation for Improvement in Schools and Early Childhood Services as one of the suite of resources developed to support education evaluation practice. These Principles of Practice guide the thinking and practice of ERO evaluators as they work with schools and early childhood services in their external evaluation role and support the development of internal evaluation capacity. The concepts of Whakawhanaungatanga, Mahi Tahi and Poutokomanawa in ERO’s internal strategy He Taura Here Tangata, guide how ERO evaluators undertake their education evaluation work. The Principles of Practice can also be used in early childhood services as a resource to support internal evaluation and their evaluation work with ERO evaluators. To find out more and read the document, go here, https://ero.govt. nz/our-research/principles-of-practiceeducation-evaluation-for-improvementin-schools-and-early-childhood-services March 2022 { 14 }

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Kia Ora ECE Whānau, I am proud to live and work in ECE in the Hawkes Bay. Along with my partner John we own three early childhood centres (Frederick Street Kindergarten, Frederick Street Family Centre and Havelock North Family Centre). I have been fortunate to work in all sectors of education including ECE, Primary, Secondary and Tertiary sectors both here in New Zealand and overseas. I am a registered teacher and hold a Masters in Education and a Post Graduate in Educational Psychology. I sit on several Charitable Trust boards in the Hawkes Bay, and find my work and spark comes from supporting others to be the best they can be. My passion remains for ECE and the differences teachers and centres can make on the lives of our precious taonga. I have two children Zahara (13) and Zakir (12), and two step children Ben and Alex, who are now grown and out conquering the world. What do you love most about working in ECE? The tamariki, kaiako and whānau – they delight, intrigue and challenge me each and every day. Learning about them and what sparks learning in tamariki is the most rewarding part of my day. Working alongside a team of professionals, engaging in conversations in how to extend or sustain a child’s interest, how to meet personal and professional goals, and how to support our whānau and community to achieve their goals for their tamariki is an absolute joy. Creating a sense of manaakitanga and belonging at our centres, beautiful and engaging environments, and supported, inspired and professional colleagues are the loves for me in ECE. Why did you join the ECC and how has it helped you in your role as a centre owner? I joined many years ago following a Professional Learning and Development Introducing ECC Executive Member: Aimee Hawke March 2022 { 16 }

workshop, and have found the support of the National Office and the Executive Board to be invaluable. The sharing of knowledge is so vital for smaller centres like ours. The information comes from so many different sources and it is not always easy to decipher, so having a National body that supports the leg work of disseminating the information has meant more time with the tamariki and less with paperwork. Having a knowledge bank to fall back on when you hit a tricky situation helps centre owners feel confident in making the right decisions. What would you like to accomplish as an ECC executive member? I feel I have joined at a time when ECE needs all the support it can get. We are facing so many challenging situations – Covid-19, the mandate, Pay Parity, Pay Equity, Teacher Shortage, the negative (at times) image of ECE, the dismantling of ECE teachers as a profession, the Teaching Council, the lack of teacher training service providers, and the broken funding model. I have been on the Executive for six months now and have worked with the Board on the Pay Parity Spreadsheet (support with opt-in or out), hosted several regional webinars and offered one-to-one support to other centres. I look forward to several projects I am working on with the Executive members to bring about change and support for our sector. I want to continue to support our sector and the people in it. I believe we have an amazing ECE environment and we need more stories about all the good things that are happening in the world of ECE and the amazing things owners and kaiako are achieving each and every day. I want to raise the profile of an ECE teacher – so children stand up and say – I want to be an ECE teacher when I grow up. (Whew!) Biggest challenge facing ECE today? Funding in a nutshell! The teacher shortage, the image of ECE – all the issues I’ve just spoken about – all come back to a broken funding model and I want to be part of the change that fixes it. What makes a great leader? Finding the best in people and making them shine. Supporting the team to achieve personal and professional goals. Being humble and admitting when you are wrong. Alongside celebrating together with laughter, empathy and finding the joy in each and every day. How do you unwind after a busy day/week? We are lucky to have an abundance of produce, and there is nothing nicer than picking fruit or vegetables from the garden and making a delicious meal for loved ones. I read a lot – (thank goodness for Kindle). I look at my bike quite often – and get on it sometimes. And I love hanging with my children – they are at such an interesting age (although my colleagues tell me I’ve been saying that since they were born). I love finding out what makes them tick, what their passions are, and generally continuing to learn about them. QUARTER PAGE QUARTER PAGE As the saying goes, timing is everything. If your cash flow could do with a breather, we can help Would amagic beanbehandy right now? 0800 777 559 childcarefinance.co.nz No giants. Just trusted cashflow support for childcare centres. EXPERT support from childcare centre specialists 60% Early access of up to of your next bulk funding payment Advances available in multiples of $5,000 NO FIXED term contracts Same day approvals; minimal paperwork Fast-track your next bulk fundingpayment Contact us now Audit@williambuck.co.nz | 09 366 5000 From $835 + GST Easy to follow guide and tailored templates to use We audit privately owned centres nationwide and community based centres in Auckland to comply with MOE requirements William Buck is a preferred supplier to the Early Childhood Council Get your 2022 AUDIT sorted now! March 2022 { 17 }

Oh no! Not another article about networking! Sometimes, it seems like everyone is talking about the dreaded N-word! Nearly every membership group or professional body makes some sage comment about the value of networking with other members in their organisation, and many of us agree, nod our heads, sign up, pay our money, and wait for something magical to happen. More often than not, nothing happens. So, what goes wrong in these situations? Perhaps the best place to look for answers is by examining our understanding of what networking really is. We know that networking isn’t about attending more events, collecting more business cards, or getting more followers than the next person. It is not really about quantity, and it certainly isn’t a race to 500+ LinkedIn connections. Really good networking is a far more strategic and focussed activity. It is something that we need to invest a bit of time and energy in, in order to get the best results. We are not talking about creating a telephone directory. Instead, we want a little black book of useful, valuable, and treasured contacts. Networking has sometimes been described as being a little bit like dating, and I think that this is a fair analogy. In both cases, we are searching for somebody else’s suitability as a prospective partner, in an ongoing relationship. Does the other party have what we are looking for, and what can we offer in return? We need to know what we want, and what other people want from us. So, networking is a goal-orientated activity, which requires us to interact with people, in order to make things happen. However, it is not an end in itself, but rather a step towards ongoing collaboration with other people. As such, it involves identifying the things which we currently lack (e.g. knowledge, contacts, resources, insights, information, etc.), and finding the right people who can do something about these things, for us. That doesn’t sound too hard, but it can be a challenging situation, nevertheless. To start with, you have to like connecting with other people. If you don’t like meeting people and talking to them, then you are probably in the wrong industry, to begin with! Having said that, most people in the early childhood education sector are very sociable, and they like interacting with other people, so meeting with new contacts shouldn’t be too much of a problem. However, there is a big difference between ‘just meeting people’, and actively looking for assistance from others. If you have the uncomfortable feeling that you are being too self-interested by asking for help, then try flipping the model, and see what you can offer to other ECE centre owners, managers, and staff. Networking often works best when everyone benefits from the experience, so be ready to share your own knowledge and How to network like an expert! By Phil Sales March 2022 { 18 }

insights! Time is often a major barrier to our ability to network. If you are working flat-out each day, then your time is probably at a premium, and networking opportunities may be few and far between. This is when industry events, such as annual conferences, really come into their own. If you are going to a conference, then make sure that you at least talk to the people sitting next to you, or make conversation with someone new, over lunch. Remember that not all networking is about business outcomes, per se. You can set networking goals for business, social, personal interest, or professional development purposes. Sometimes, these areas will overlap, and a social contact can easily develop into a useful business connection. Having made some contacts, the next challenge is to make something of the opportunity. Often, this involves making use of the uniqueness which sets you (or your ECE centre) apart from others around you. Many years ago, when my wife and I were starting our family, we did the rounds by visiting local primary schools, and putting our children’s names on various waiting lists. One local school asked about our early childhood education arrangements, and then mentioned that they had a relationship with a local ECE centre. Why was this relevant? Because they worked closely with the centre to facilitate the transition of children to the primary school! In practice, this included shared values, site visits, an early look at incoming students, and the use of similar systems and processes. Less obviously, this also meant that the school and the ECE centre crosspromoted each other, within their networks, and had strong selling points which set them apart from other competitors. Clever stuff! Being memorable is an important part of networking. It makes it harder for people to forget you, and easier for them to know how to help. Remember, that whatever sets you apart from other ECE centres is the thing that you want to tell people about, because that is what is going to attract them to your centre, in preference to someone else’s. What do you specialise in, or really excel at? For instance, if your centre has a strong religious focus, then work with your local church, religious groups, and local schools with a religious interest. Similarly, find your natural networking partners if you have a particular educational philosophy, or cultural niche. If you aren’t sure about which specialisations to follow, then look around for clues. Maybe you are in the middle of an area where there are many embassies and foreign diplomatic workers? Not only can you specialise in this area, but you can also offer opportunities to the families to become involved in local organisations and activities (starting with your own!). So, with all this in mind, let’s see if we can put some structure into our networking plan for the upcoming ECC conference later this year. Firstly, give yourself a clear purpose. Think about why you are networking, and what you want to get out of the experience. Ask yourself what the important issues are that you need to grapple with this year. Remember that networking isn’t about meeting everyone, but rather finding those people who will help you to solve a specific problem. Be strategic in your thinking. Secondly, do your homework. If you are going to conference this year, then think about the sort of people who you are likely to meet. The back issues of Swings and Roundabouts are a great place to start looking for ECE centres which are doing amazing things. These are the people with ideas, experiences, contacts, and insights, who you will learn from. Thirdly, set some goals. What do you want to talk about? What do you want to learn from these people? Remember, that it isn’t about ‘just meeting them’, so much as putting them to work for you (in a nice sense, of course!). But remember to also have a ‘give’ attitude. What do you have to offer to others? By having this attitude of ‘giving’ to others, others will more likely want to help you in return. Give yourself some simple measures of what success will look like for you, by the end of the conference. Fourthly, have a seek-and-find strategy. Maybe identify three or four centre managers who you would really like to talk to, and reach out to them now, to organise a time for a coffee-and-chat, while you are both at conference. Be creative with your thinking: Maybe put a large sign on your back saying, “I want to talk about fundraising”. Actively ask around to see who knows about an issue, or who knows someone who knows something … Finally, make sure that you actually do it! Meeting new people is suddenly so much easier when you know what you want out of it. Leave conference with a bag full of ideas, insights, and valuable contacts! If you go to conference just to listen to a few speakers, look at a few displays, and have a nice dinner, then you have missed the whole point of the exercise. The ECC conference is far more valuable than you might think, and networking is the key to unlocking all of that lovely value! About the author Phil Sales is specialist business coach, interested in 'cool stuff' in the business development sector. For more about Phil, see https://iact15.wixsite.com/iactltd/who-we-are March 2022 { 19 }

In any workplace, it is important we consistently value our most important asset – our team. As Simon Sinek, an inspirational speaker, says – the focus of any workplace should be to enable their team to bring their best selves to work every day. In a centre where managers and leaders empower, support, mentor, and acknowledge their team, research has shown high team engagement and productivity. This, in turn, supports the mental wellbeing of each person within the team and there is a very clear correlation between the positive mental wellbeing of a team and business performance1. In addition to providing a beautiful human space to work within, as reviewed in prior articles, another way we can support our Caring for our team through knowledge sharing By Tiffany Smith, Collingridge and Smith Architects To create the healthiest environment for your centre look to understand how to get the best ventilation and lighting within a room then look to your team meetings and CPD sessions to share this knowledge on a regular basis (Kakapo Creek, Mairangi Bay, Auckland Photography and furniture from Learning Spaces Global). March 2022 { 20 }

team’s mental wellbeing is to enable and encourage lifelong learning. This can be done through the integrated daily practice of knowledge-sharing across a centre. Often knowledge-sharing within a centre is limited to induction training and formal continuous professional development (CPD) sessions. It can also often focus on younger team members and can fail to provide support beyond initial advancements2. However, the integrated daily practice of knowledge-sharing across the centre embraces formal and informal training and enables a team to freely share what they know across the centre. This is even more important with the increasing levels of innovation and change, requiring our evolving knowledge to be assimilated at an ever-faster rate3. In other words every day the world gets a bit smarter and faster and unless we keep up with it through the sharing of our knowledge every day we as individuals become a bit less smart by comparison and slower. Knowledge-sharing supports individuals and groups to: ● share insights; ● reduce redundant work or “reinventing the wheel”; ● reduce training time for new employees; ● retain knowledge as employees move to other centres or workplaces; ● adapt to changing environments; ● become conscious of how much they do know; ● feel part of the centre and ● build trust. To do this, knowledge-sharing often focuses on objectives such as: ● the sharing of lessons learned; ● continuous improvement; ● understanding what best practices best fit the centre and ● innovation. Where is knowledge retained in a centre? Knowledge is either ‘tacit’ or ‘explicit’. Tacit knowledge is the knowledge a person unconsciously holds, and explicit knowledge is the knowledge a person consciously holds that can easily communicate to others. Generally, most centres focus on the sharing of explicit knowledge through formal training and lines of management. However, the true benefit of knowledge-sharing is realised when: ● there is regular formal and informal sharing of explicit knowledge across the team no matter their position, and ● the internalised tacit knowledge of each team member is converted into explicit knowledge for it to be shared. Knowledge can also be considered embedded knowledge within a system and procedures or embodied knowledge representing a person’s learned capability. Collaborative environments can encourage and support the sharing of tacit knowledge and convert explicit knowledge as well as facilitate knowledge sharing between embedded knowledge to embodied knowledge. How CAN knowledge be shared? Knowledge can be actively managed or ‘pushed’. This is when individuals feed specific knowledge into a shared procedure, process, training program or database for use by others. Alternatively, knowledge can be requested of experts to provide their insights based on their knowledge to a person or group of people on an ad hoc basis (a ‘pull’ approach). How CAN knowledge be managed? At a strategic level, a centre needs to be able to assess what knowledge it currently holds and where does it lay, then assess if that knowledge is in the appropriate place/s. It also needs to assess what knowledge is missing and will need in the future, then plan to acquire that knowledge. At a tactical level, a centre needs to be identifying and formalising existing knowledge, acquire new knowledge, archive redundant knowledge and create procedures, processes or systems to enable effective and efficient knowledgesharing across the centre. At an operational level, knowledge is encouraged to be used and shared across the centre, supporting access to the right knowledge at the right time. How can knowledgesharing be supported and encouraged? Encourage those sharing knowledge to be a mentor and coach. A mentor in terms of enabling a person to be their best self and a coach in terms of a trusted advisor. At team meetings, encourage everyone to share a learning they have had since the last team meeting – for example how they have observed the playground or room layout is working or how the children are using it (Kakapo Creek, Mairangi Bay, Auckland. Photography by CASA and playground equipment from Learning Spaces Global). March 2022 { 21 }

References 1. Harold, K.G., Aw, A.E, Williams, J., (2018) Mind Fit. 2. Carraher, E, Smith R.E., Delisle, P., (2017) Leading Collaborative Architectural Practice. 3. RIBA (2020) Handbook of Practice Management. 4. Bunting, M., (2016) The Mindful Leader. Phil and Tiffany Smith, owners of Collingridge and Smith Architects (CASA), have specialised in designing world-class education architecture for over 20 years in NZ, Australia and the UK. They believe in creating beautiful human spaces based on research that brings together architecture and evolutionary psychology. They have been recognised for their achievements in sustainable early childhood architecture with their designs achieving many local and international awards for centres including Three Trees Learning Centre, Campbells Bay Early Learning Centre, Fantails Childcare, Chrysalis Early Learning Centre, Kristin Early Learning, New Shoots Children's Centres and Te Mirumiru Childhood Education Centre. Website: www.casa-uk.com Look to create spaces that enable natural interactions that encourages continuous knowledge sharing between teachers, children and parents (Kakapo Creek, Mairangi Bay, Auckland. Photography and playground equipment from Learning Spaces Global). Encourage those receiving knowledge to hold a beginner’s mindset. This supports us no matter what age, to be comfortable with not yet knowing, just like a child learning to hold a pencil or ride a bike. In a beginner’s mindset we rediscover our innocence while still maintaining access to our experience and wisdom. It is a beautiful and powerful combination4. Look for knowledge sharing opportunities and moments within the centre’s daily activities, for example: ● At team meetings, encourage everyone to share a learning they have had since the last team meeting. It can take a while for people to remember to bring their learning and be comfortable with sharing a learning so be patient, be encouraging and be constant. ● Assign a new person a buddy, someone they can turn to for those everyday questions. ● Support a mentoring programme that also encourages reverse mentoring ~ where a junior team member is encouraged to share their knowledge and skills with a more senior member. ● Look to your team to share their knowledge at your next CPD lesson. ● Ensure the staffroom is welcoming and encourages a sense of community amongst the team. March 2022 { 22 }

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How we got here The New Zealand early learning sector has historically enjoyed freedom when identifying and selecting locations to establish new services. Service providers have been able to select locations based on community needs, parental demand, land availability, and appropriate Council zoning. Provided the locations were suitable from a child health perspective, the Ministry of Education (Ministry) had to refrain from involving itself in locational decision-making. This historical approach has resulted in both positive and negative outcomes for tāmarki, whānau and the early learning sector. On the positive side, there has been an increased supply of services and therefore licence places. This provides parents with more choice and the ability to find a service that meets their specific needs. Additionally, competition in the market drives the need for providers to maintain or increase quality to ensure that they remain appealing to new families. Conversely, some argue that a lack of Ministry intervention in the distribution of the network has created an oversupply of services in parts of the community and undersupply in others. This may result in pressure on centres through increased competition for the same pool of children and teachers, therefore driving down the viability of centres. The change However, from 1 August this year – this will all be academic because, from this date, early learning service providers will no longer have sole discretion over where to establish new centres. Section 17 of the Education and Training Act, and the proposed amendments to the Act, establish a ‘Planned Network Approach.’ In simple terms, it’s the introduction of a new preapproval step that providers will need to pass through before being eligible to submit any licensing application. This requires anyone considering starting a new service to submit a pre-approval application to the Ministry where the appropriateness of the location of the service will be subject to: “(a) a high-level assessment of the relevant attributes of the area to be served, including (without limitation) the demography of the area, the needs of the communities in the area, the needs of the children in the area, and the availability of licensed early childhood services in the area with different offerings (for example, the provision of te reo Māori).” s17(2)(a) Education and Training Act Bill (No 2). The impact The Minister of Education will make a determination on the pre-approval application and, if granted, you will have two years to: ● Secure financing; ● Buy the land; ● Design a centre; ● Obtain resource consent; ● Obtain building consent; ● Construct and fitout the centre; ● Employee teachers; and ● Apply for and obtain your licence. That’s a tight timeline and, as we’ve seen over the last two years, external events beyond your control can slow down consenting and construction. Should the Minister decline your preapproval application, your only appeal is through a judicial review of the decision through the Courts – an expensive, untested and daunting prospect. Get involved To provide guidance to the sector, and to form a base against which to assess pre-approval applications, the Ministry will be producing ‘National and Regional Statements.’ The intent of these statements is to indicate where the Ministry wants to Network Planning: What you need to know By Logan Whitelaw March 2022 { 24 }