It was recently announced by Community Services Minister, Hon Tony Simpson MLA, that 84 child care centres in WA have exceeded national quality standards. Two of these are MercyCare’s own Wembley Early Learning Centre and Heathridge Early Learning Centre.
MercyCare’s Heathridge Early Learning Centre has cemented its position as one of the top day care centres in Perth, thanks to a range of innovative sustainability programs and experienced staff members who are passionate about caring for children in the local community.
All centres are assessed in seven quality areas – educational program and practice, children’s health and safety, physical environment, staffing arrangements, relationships with children, collaborative partnerships with families and communities and leadership and service management.
Both centres received high accolades for their committed, caring staff and the amount of natural elements that have been incorporated in the large outdoor areas.
The Heathridge Centre has a strong focus on environmental programs, with children encouraged to spend time in natural play outdoors through a recycling program, worm farm and veggie patch.
Children at the Early Learning Centre are supported to care for their own vegetables and herb patches, and recently created their own greenhouses to learn about the process of food production from planting seeds, helping vegetables grow, eating fresh produce and recycling food scraps with the help of the worm farms.
These innovative programs contributed to the centre recently being named as one of WA’s best managed childcare centres by Community Services Minister Tony Simpson, with the centre exceeding standards under the National Quality Standards.
MercyCare Heathridge Early Learning Centre Manager Fiona Cousins said the centre’s environmental programs were just one aspect of what makes it a successful nurturing and educational environment for children.
“While our environmental programs are teaching children important lessons about caring for and growing their own food, much of our success as an Early Learning Centre comes down to our staff’s commitment and passion to promoting early learning opportunities,” she said.
Our team includes experienced early learning educators, some of whom have been here for up to 20 years, and as a result have the opportunity to develop genuine connections with families in the local community whose children also grow up attending the Early Learning Centre. We place great emphasis on spending one-on-one time with each child and our staff members show a genuine interest in every child’s stories, which in turns supports the learning environment we create here.”
MercyCare Chief Executive Officer Chis Hall said MercyCare was delighted by the Heathridge Early Learning Centre’s accolade from the State Government.
We are delighted that our Heathridge Early Learning Centre has been named as one of WA’s best managed childcare centres, which reflects the excellent educational options we offer,” he said.