The KindiCare Excellence Awards celebrate the top performing early childhood education and care centres right across Australia.
2022 Award Winners
Ashgrove Memorial Kindergarten Inc.
KindiCare●August 29th, 2022
This not-for-profit community kindergarten in Brisbane is equal winner of the 2022 KindiCare Excellence Award for Queensland. It achieved an incredible KindiCare Rating of 9.9, to go with its Excellent Rating from ACECQA, and this inspiring service is a learning oasis with a long history in the community.
Ashgrove Memorial Kindergarten dates back to 1949, and many of its staff and parents attended the service when they were children. Former Centre Director, Carol Braunack, was with the kindy for 37 years before her retirement in 2022, and as the city has grown around Ashgrove Memorial, its commitment to children and families has remained as strong as ever. Co-Director, Lisa Cranny says, “What makes our service special is the quality of engagement with children and families. We get to know the families very well, and in the year before a child starts with us, we do a one-on-one interview with their family and the child to really get to know their child and how we can best support them.” Parents on the committee help to run Ashgrove Memorial, and every mum and dad is encouraged to sign on to the flexible family roster and share the learning program with their child, with the option to come for a while or stay for the day. Lisa says, “We really encourage parents to spend some time at our kindy, because they see the interactions their child has with the other children in the group. Having a parent there gives children a real sense of belonging and they get to show off their portfolio, resources and artwork, and maybe choose a game because their parent is on roster that day.” When it comes to learning, there’s a focus on children’s social, sensory and physical development, and especially their upper body strength. Ashgrove Memorial Kindy has a spacious, green outdoor classroom, with room for little legs to run and lots of upper body strengthening activities. Lisa says. “It’s really important to strengthen a child’s core and upper body, because this filters down to their fine motor development and helps them to sit and concentrate for longer periods, which prepares them for school.” Children love the al fresco cave, digging patch, trapeze rings, group swing, fort and climb-able tree, and whether they’re outside or in, children are encouraged to feel good about themselves. Educators nurture each child’s self-esteem and confidence, and Lisa says, “Children finish with us ready to go to school, with the social-emotional foundation they need in school and also in life.” For over 70 years, Ashgrove Memorial Kindergarten has been boosting children to achieve their best, and its near-perfect KindiCare Rating says a lot about how loved – and successful – this community kindy is.