Cambrian Preschool has been awarded Excellent Rating

Date Awarded: 8 October 2018

Cambrian Preschool 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 Melton West Victoria-based service was recognised for its collaborative partnerships with professional, community or research organisations, commitment to children that respects, reflects and celebrates culture and diversity, including place of origin, and practice and environments that enhance children’s learning and growth.

Examples of exceptional practice at the service include:

  • A therapy dog program to support children who have experienced trauma, to engage at the service. Billy, the Border Collie, was introduced at eight weeks old and is a permanent member of one of the four year old groups. Billy accompanies children on transition to school visits, provides consistency, comfort and routine and is acknowledged as a fourth teacher.
  • Commitment to children’s physical, nutritional and mental wellbeing through a range of tailored practices and programs. This includes a breakfast program, weekly preparation and sharing of a cooked meal, having access to free fresh foods within the service foyer and a clothing exchange.
  • A collaborative partnership has been formed with Catholic Regional College Melton with a focus on enhancing community connections within the service. Children and families are supported to interact and engage with year ten students and teachers through various learning projects including the building of a reconciliation garden, construction of a cubby house and turning children’s images into soft toys.
  • The service works with a range of organisations including the Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency (VACCA), Maternal Child Health Services (MCHS), Koolin Balit Babaneek Booboop Early Years project team and Foundation House. Shared goals and outcomes include identifying strategies to increase service participation and the hosting of meetings, workshops and health checks to support and educate families on child health, positive parenting and mental health wellbeing.
  • Enhancing student experience with the nominated supervisor taking on the role of mentor teacher. Under this position, guidance and mentoring is provided to pre-service teachers from Melbourne Graduate School of Education and Swinburne University.

As a leader in the sector, Cambrian Preschool leads and inspires by being an active member of the Early Childhood Management Services (ECMS) Reconciliation Action Plan committee and ECMS and Shire of Melton’s Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNAICC) steering group. Through these committees and groups, Cambrian Preschool shares its practice with other education and care services and community members to ensure their positive impact reaches beyond children and families who access their service.

About the Excellent rating

Services that receive ‘Exceeding National Quality Standard’ in all 7 quality areas can apply for the Excellent rating. The Excellent rating is awarded for three years. After this time services have the option to re-apply.

More information is available on the ACECQA website