A childcare centre manager who left children unsupervised - one was eventually found on the street by members of the public - is not allowed to hold a leadership role for the next three years.

However, although Bridget Ann Hackett was charged over four separate incidents, the New Zealand Teachers Disciplinary Tribunal only upheld one complaint.

There were four incidents at various times at the KiNZ Mission Heights Early Learning Centre between September 2015 and January this year.

In September last year, a 3-year-old who had autism went missing. He was eventually found in school grounds next to the centre after being left there by a teacher during an "impromptu excursion".


On November 27, a member of the public found a child outside the centre near a neighbouring road.

In January this year, just before a visit by the Ministry of Education, a child was found unattended in an alcove just inside the building and eating food from a plastic bag.

The last incident involved children being left unattended on a deck. That resulted in an employment disciplinary process. A few days later Hackett resigned.

The New Zealand Teachers Disciplinary Tribunal said it was impressed by the way Hackett gave evidence and felt she "was capable of reflection of her practice and therefore ongoing development and maturity".

"The events that were the subject of this charge have been a very steep learning curve for her, and it is indeed fortunate that there were no more serious consequences for the children concerned.

"We accept [Hackett] was truly shattered by events."

Neither Hackett's lawyer nor the Complaints Assessment Committee felt Hackett's conduct amount to serious misconduct, and the tribunal only found the charge relating to the September incident proven.

However, the tribunal found it did not amount to serious misconduct.


"We have found that [Hackett] failed to take adequate steps to ensure children were supervised on one occasion. Therefore her conduct fell short of the stanard expected of a centre manager and we find it amounts to misconduct."

The tribunal placed a condition on Hackett's practising certificate that she not undertake a leadership role for three years.

She was also ordered to pay 20 per cent of the investigation's costs.

Hackett had no plans to take up a leadership role.