KU Marcia Burgess Autism Specific Early Learning and Care Centre

90 Memorial Avenue, Woodward Park
LIVERPOOL NSW 2170
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  • 02 9612 9400
  • Monday to Friday 8:30am - 4:30pm
Toddlers Preschoolers

Our Program and Approach

KU Marcia Burgess Autism Specific Early Learning and Care Centre provides an evidence-based intervention (The Early Start Denver Model) for children with a diagnosis of autism. Our centre is funded by the Federal Government to deliver autism-specific education and care to 20 children a day, up to 5 years of age, in a long day care setting. Our centre is one of 6 ASELCCs across Australia and the only one in NSW.

The Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) is an evidence-based intervention specifically developed for children with autism aged between 12 – 60 months. It is a play-based intervention that fuses behavioural and developmental principles into an integrated approach. The Model is a Naturalistic Developmental Behavioural Intervention, and as such can be implemented across multiple settings, including the Specialist Child Care programs: ESDM Clinics and Preschool programs, if delivered by Certified ESDM therapists. It can also be delivered in the family home, by the child’s parents, simply within daily routines and play. Our KU MB ASELCC has implemented a variety of ESDM Programs across these multiple settings to address the needs of the many children and families on our wait list. We have opened up ESDM Clinics in Liverpool, Penrith and Hazelbrook and are currently adapting the ESDM to three of our Mainstream Preschools in Cobbitty, Airds and Macquarie Fields.


The ESDM Clinics in Liverpool, Penrith & Hazelbrook

Each of the ESDM Clinics supported by the KU MB NSW ASELCC provide the ESDM intervention as an intensive 1:1 option for families who are unable to access the ASELCC Group Program. The ESDM aims to bring the child back into the social loop, reduce the symptoms of autism and fill in the learning gaps that have accumulated over time. It is a Manualised intervention with a comprehensive curriculum checklist to target all developmental areas, with a particular focus on communication, cognition and social interaction skills. All of the ESDM Therapists who deliver 1:1 intervention at these Clinics has completed the Certification level of training in the ESDM. They offer an ESDM Curriculum Assessment for each child, which is used to inform the child's comprehensive, quarterly program. This program is then implemented in an individualised therapy session, where the parents can observe the therapist working with their child and learn the strategies to help their own child back at home. Each of these Therapists can also provide coaching to parents in the ESDM model, if this is the parent’s preference. Parents can choose how many hours each week they would like to access these clinics and use their HCWA or NDIS funding to do so.


Supported Inclusion

Every child at the Autism Specific Early Learning and Care centre spends an hour each day with typically developing peers from the co-located KU Mainstream Preschool and has the opportunity to spend part of their week in a mainstream preschool or long day care centre within their local community, where additional support is provided. This enables the children to engage in daily supported integration with typically developing peers and provides the opportunity for children to generalise their skills across settings. It also encourages relationships to form with children and families from centres in their local communities.


Our ESDM Training Program

Our NSW KU MB ASELCC has extensive experience in providing ESDM training. For the past five years, the service's certified ESDM trainer provides Advanced ESDM Workshops on a monthly basis, actively supporting parents and professionals to learn and use this evidenced based intervention. This training program attracts professionals from many states of Australia and countries across the world. Professionals participating in the training program can also be supervised to achieve a level of Certification as an ESDM Therapist, by our own Certified ESDM Trainer.

The ESDM Advanced Training also gives our own staff the tools to engage and teach young children with autism, within the daily program. Each family at our centre is assigned a Key Worker, who is a Certified ESDM Therapist and coordinates an individual and comprehensive program for each child, ensuring a consistent and predictable approach from all staff. Daily data is collected on each child’s progress towards the achievement of their individual goals and a comprehensive program review is completed quarterly.

Our Certified Therapists also provide a para-professional level of training to Child Care Educators and other adults who cannot go through the Certification process. This training is called: ‘One of the Kids’ and has been designed specifically to build the capacity of all mainstream service staff who are including children with Autism in their services.


Our Professional Partnerships

KU has partnered with Sydney South West Area Health Service (SSWAHS) and the University of NSW (UNSW) to provide a team of specialist trained staff, including Early Childhood Teachers, Child Care Educators, Psychologists, Occupational Therapists, Consultant Paediatrician, Speech Pathologists and a Family Coordinator. All staff have been trained in the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) by our own Certified ESDM Trainer and under the supervision of the M.I.N.D. Institute at University of California Davis, Sacramento, to provide intensive intervention for young children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).


Research

Our ASELCC is also a Research Centre to ensure that we are informing and advancing our practice. At any one time, there will be six to eight Research Projects running out of the ASELCC, under the supervision of the University of NSW. This ensures that we are consistently testing everything we do. All of this research is published in peer reviewed journals.


Our Quality


Our centre has been independently assessed by the Department of Education NSW under the National Quality Standards, and are proud to be rated as Exceeding the National Quality Standard.


However what matters most is what our families think...

"I love the fact that KU Marcia Burgess implements the ESDM program, as it is play based and I feel that the children respond much better to this natural approach. The educators and staff are great! We have found them at all times to be very understanding and supportive of the children and parents." - KU Marcia Burgess parent
"My son has adapted so well to the centre. He has been welcomed by the most loving and experienced staff. We are so grateful for the care they have taken to get to know every aspect of our son. He has improved so much in such a short time that he has been here. Integrating at playtime with the mainstream preschool next door has also been great, because it means he gets to interact with typically developing peers and has access to wonderful facilities." - KU Marcia Burgess parent

Our Environment

Optimal outcomes for children are created within relationships and interactions between children and staff, and children and their families, not within four walls. We work hard to create beautiful, interesting, homelike learning environments for children – whatever our setting. In our case, the environment is designed to set the stage for the ESDM to be delivered in the most effective way, but at the same time, resembles any naturalistic early childhood setting. It is the social environment that makes the difference.


Our Awards

In 2017, the staff at KU Marcia Burgess were awarded the Certificate of Excellence for Advancing Practice at the Early Childhood Intervention Australia (ECIA) NSW/ACT Excellence Awards.

The award recognises the outstanding achievements the team have made to the early childhood intervention sector and their contribution to improving the lives of children with a developmental delay or disability, their families and communities.

In 2014, the staff at KU Marcia Burgess were awarded the KU 'Making the Difference' Award for Children.

The Annual KU Difference Awards were introduced a number of years ago, as a way of acknowledging KU staff who have made a significant contribution to KU. These annual awards are open to all KU staff, at any level (either individual staff or a team), who have worked above and beyond their normal duties.


Other Features

Child Care Rebate
Designed Centre
Hat and Sunscreen
Transition to School
Public Transport
Play-based Learning
Parking
Outdoor Play
Nappies
Award
Storypark

photo of Jessica Young

Jessica Young

Director

Jessica is a qualified early childhood teacher and holds a Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood Education). She has over 10 years’ experience working with young children and children with additional needs in Australia and the UK.

Jessica has been working at KU Marcia Burgess Autism Early Learning and Care Centre since April 2016 as the Family Coordinator. She is temporarily in the Director’s position from 29 October 2018 to 1 February 2019.

Our Team

We have a multi-disciplinary team, comprising Certified ESDM Therapists across a range of disciplines; Child Care Educators, Researchers and Consultants to the program, led by Elizabeth Aylward as the Clinical Manager and Jessica Young as the Long Day Care Director. It is by bringing the passion and commitment of our team together with the rigour and critical analysis of our research that great things happen for all.

The fees for 2019 at KU Marcia Burgess ASELCC have two parts:

  • Long Day Care centre fee
    $125 per day

This fee covers the Long Day Care centre enrolment for your child. If you are entitled to Child Care Subsidy, this will reduce the daily fee you are charged. The level of Child Care Subsidy you will receive depends on your family circumstances. For more information please see below.

  • Weekly Early Intervention/NDIS Fee for a 2 day or 3 day enrolment
    $548.22 (paid for by your child’s NDIS plan)

This fee covers the early intervention/NDIS component of the ASELCC program including:

  • All assessments;
  • Individualised ESDM program;
  • One x 2 hour intensive ESDM therapy session per week;
  • Data collection;
  • Mainstream supported inclusion program offered as part of the daily program at various times throughout the year; and
  • Specialised support to transition to school.
  • The Early Intervention/NDIS fee will only be charged to your child’s plan once the NDIS plan is in place.
  • If your child is still waiting for their plan to be finalised, no Early Intervention/NDIS fee will be charged
  • The KU team will support your family in the NDIS planning process to enable your child’s NDIS plan to cover the early intervention/NDIS fee

For more details of what this program includes please see the attached summary.

Why are there two separate fees?

The centre is transitioning from a Department of Social Services funded program to an NDIS service provider model and we understand that families are in the process of obtaining NDIS plans. During this transition time period, please note that:

In an increasingly competitive marketplace, KU has remained very proudly a not for profit provider of quality education for more than 120 years. Like all early childhood education providers, our costs continue to be subject to market factors such as CPI, salary costs, Government funding and the requirements of the National Quality Framework.

Our fees are designed to cover the operational costs of delivering the unique KU learning experience, and to ensure KU can continue delivering those experiences for many years to come. Any surplus we may make is reinvested into our local staff, continually improving the quality of our services, and ensuring our long-term sustainability. KU does not distribute our profits to shareholders or send them offshore.

About Child Care Subsidy

The Commonwealth Government Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is the main payment to assist families with the costs of childcare. It is paid directly to the childcare provider and passed onto families as a fee reduction wherever families meet the criteria. The level of subsidy you receive, as well as the number of hours you will be subsidised, depends on your individual family’s circumstances. If you do not already have one, you will need a MyGov account linked to Centrelink to claim any subsidy you may be eligible for, and to find out more information, you can speak to your service Director or visit www.education.gov.au.