Ashgrove Memorial Kindergarten has been awarded an Excellent Rating

Date Awarded: 03 September 2021

Valid until: 02 September 2024

Ashgrove Memorial Kindergarten Inc (AMK) has been awarded the Excellent rating by the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA), the highest rating a service can achieve under the National Quality Framework.

The Brisbane based service was recognised for its:

  • collaborative partnerships with professional, community or research organisations
  • inclusive partnerships with children and families
  • positive workplace culture and organisational values
  • sustained commitment to professional development and support of educators
  • practice and environments that enhance children’s learning and growth.

Examples of exceptional practice at the service include:

  • Creating and maintaining long term partnerships with local primary schools to ensure best outcomes for children. This includes:
    • local primary school staff regularly visiting the service to observe children, engage with the environment and liaise with educators
    • sharing information about its pedagogical approaches and play-based practices and collaborating with preparatory teachers at early years and primary school network meetings
    • an educator from the service visiting the children in Term 1 2021 at a local state school to observe preparatory class practices and curriculum across four different classrooms and collaborating with other educators to improve practice.
  • Supporting families whose children experience disability or have additional needs to make informed decisions about their child’s formal schooling opportunities. AMK educators accompany families to meetings with school staff and work collaboratively with the child’s specialists to plan the child’s transition to school.
  • Organising presentations by expert professionals, such as psychologist Dr Judith Locke, to empower families in building children’s resilience, reducing anxiety and stress and managing challenging behaviour. The service invites former AMK families and families in the wider community to these events, ensuring ongoing support to families in their parenting role is provided beyond the service gates.
  • Employing an additional educator in each room for the start of Term 1 to provide support transitioning and settling children, and to provide opportunities for educators to build trusting and meaningful relationships with families. To provide continuity for the children, educators, and families, the additional educators are often employed as the inclusion assistant for the room after this.
  • Embedding voluntary roster mornings where families are encouraged to regularly participate in the program alongside their child. During these visits, educators engage families in discussions about their child’s learning and progress, model and support positive behaviour guidance in real time, and collaborate with families to establish mutual goals for improving children’s outcomes.
  • Partnering with Griffith University to participate in a research study which examined preschool educators’ ability and willingness to promote children’s emotional competence. The educators provided insight into their philosophy and pedagogical approaches, identifying the skills and practices required for meaningful engagement with children. Final observations from the study, ‘Preschool educators’ readiness to promote children’s emotional competence’ were published in May 2020 in the Asia-Pacific Journal of Research in Early Childhood Education. 

As a leader in the sector, Ashgrove Memorial Kindergarten Inc proactively shares its strong relationship-based practice with the wider education and care sector. It does this through research studies, state conferences, early years and primary school network meetings, and mentoring opportunities such as the Early Childhood Mentoring Beginner Teacher Program with the Queensland Department of Education.

About the Excellent rating

Services that receive ‘Exceeding National Quality Standard’ in all seven quality areas can apply to ACECQA for the Excellent rating. The Excellent rating is awarded for three years. After this time services have the option to re-apply.