SETTING: The setting at the Pelican Waters-Golden Beach Kindergarten and Childcare.
SETTING: The setting at the Pelican Waters-Golden Beach Kindergarten and Childcare. Contributed

EXCELLENT RATINGS: What sets childcare centres apart?

IT'S one of only a handful of 'excellent'-rated childcare centres in the region in a prime position, so what sets Pelican Waters-Golden Beach Kindergarten and Childcare Centre apart?

Approved provider, owner and education director Sue Inglis outlined a few things that helped them acquire the excellent rating.

"We're really inspired by children being really respected for their contribution and what they can do. They're very creative beings,” she said.

Excellent ratings can be applied for by services found to be exceeding national standards in all assessment criteria.

Mrs Inglis is creating a family atmosphere at the centre, her husband Greg (not the rugby league star) is a co-owner and her son Tyler is an educator, the family having owned the centre for the last four years.

She said the centre's location, with Pumicestone Passage on one side and Porter Park on the other enabled them to run beach and bush kindy, while they also employ an artist-in-residence to help tap into the kids' creative sides.

Aboriginal stories are told to the children by another of the centre's educators on the bush kindy sessions and Mrs Inglis said community involvement was another key aspect to their service.

The kids do a community choir once a month at nearby Saint Mary's Aged Care, as part of ensuring the youngsters are a valued part of the Pelican Waters community.

"It's a pretty dynamic little place,” the Masters in early childhood education holder said.

They don't advertise, relying on word-of-mouth which keeps the centre 100% full.

She said each kid had about 14 sq m of space in the centre, up on the average which she said was about seven square metres per child.

Technology also plays a part in their programs, but it's not the focus, only used to help the kids make sense of their play and aide their learning.

"It's always attached to their learning,” Mrs Inglis said.

The team even work with other educators in the region, opening their doors to fellow educators wishing to come in and learn from some of the systems Mrs Inglis and her staff employ.


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