KU Isobel Pulsford Memorial Preschool

The KU Isobel Pulsford Memorial Preschool team is recognised for embracing a culture of inquiry and creating a space for the community to thrive.

The preschool has taken on a revitalised view of pedagogical practice, which sees young children as capable, resourceful thinkers and producers of knowledge. This new way of thinking has also enabled parents to re-examine their assumptions and engage with their children in new and exciting ways.

As a result, many families are now embracing a more inquisitive approach to early learning. The child is celebrated as co-researcher, co-constructor and a key companion in the learning and teaching experience.

The KU Isobel Pulsford Memorial Preschool team hopes for success in the Awards so they can support professional learning and create a framework to support colleagues reimagining their work practices.

KU West Pymble Preschool

KU West Pymble Preschool is recognised for their efforts to incorporate sustainability into their pedagogy and practice, contributing to their vision for a better, healthier world.

Their approach has inspired children to think about living responsibly and caring for the environment. In consultation with families, the children have initiated actions regarding recycling, waste, water and power management, as well as identifying practices to be adopted in the home.

This work has also highlighted the children’s capacity for civic participation. After the preschool implemented a program to develop understanding of the local bush, the children noticed the local creek had turned orange. They took water samples and worked with local council to help monitor the water quality.

This culture of learning has inspired the entire community. It has positioned KU West Pymble Preschool and the children as leaders in sustainable practices and has helped the children develop empathy, resilience, and respect.

KU West Pymble Preschool plans to facilitate tailored professional learning, specialised mentoring, and access to academic expertise if they are an Award winner.

Jackie Staudinger

Jackie is recognised for the astute and dedicated leadership of her team at KU Macquarie Fields Preschool, supporting educators to create a thriving learning community.

As Director of the preschool, Jackie guides the team in research and evidence-based practice, re-imagining new ways of teaching and delivering programs that are valued by the local community.

Within the preschool’s Healthy Eating Project, Jackie has established partnerships to help communicate information on nutrition and healthy eating. She has partnered with the NSW Government’s Munch and Move health initiative, community health services and ‘Chef Charlotte’, who has provided cooking experiences for children and parents.

Jackie hopes to be successful in the Awards so she can attend a study tour in the Northern Territory, where she will work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to build a deeper knowledge of culture, connection to Country, and authentic pedagogy.

“It was an honour to be a finalist for the HESTA Individual Leadership award. I am extremely grateful to be recognised, acknowledged, and valued as an Educational Leader.

I must thank KU Children’s Services for their uncompromising commitment to quality early education. KU inspires and influences best practice in early education in Australia.

Thank you to KU CEO Chris Legg, the Board, Executive Team, Central Office staff, Cherylanne Williams, Cathie Hayes and in particular Brooke Rankin, Education & Quality Manager, who continues to support me with fulfilling my vision in building strong connections with children, families and the community. I strongly value the importance of providing a sense of belonging, understanding, respecting, and accepting difference and diversity, and embracing and supporting inclusion. I sincerely express my gratitude to KU Children’s Services for making a difference for children, families and our team of teachers and educators.”