Posted November 2023
KU Macquarie Fields Preschool has celebrated their ‘Excellent’ rating under the National Quality Framework (NQF) for early childhood education services by holding a community event on Friday 24 November.
The Excellent rating is the highest rating achievable under the NQF and only services rated as Exceeding in all quality areas of the National Quality Standard are eligible to apply to the Australian Children’s Education and Care Authority (ACECQA).
The event was attended by children, families and staff from the preschool, KU Children’s Services CEO Christine Legg, and special guests from the community and sector.
"Receiving an 'Excellent' rating is a testament to the dedication and commitment of the entire team at KU Macquarie Fields Preschool. It showcases their unwavering focus on providing exceptional early childhood education and care," said KU Children's Services CEO, Christine Legg.
The celebrations included an Acknowledgement of Country, speeches recognising the preschool, its community and rating, and concluded with the children singing a ‘thank you’ song and afternoon tea.
Achieving the Excellent rating from ACECQA means that KU Macquarie Fields is one of just 32 early childhood education and care services from across the country to hold highest possible rating.
KU Macquarie Fields Preschool Director, Jackie Staudinger, and her team were delighted to be acknowledged with the result.
“As a leader, I’m honoured to have received this recognition. I’m proud to work alongside a team of educators who collaboratively invest skills in exceptional practice,” said Jackie.
During the event, Jackie described what excellence means to her.
“To me, excellence means focusing on strengths, positives, equity, diversity, inclusion, cultural responsiveness, and reflection. It’s an attitude – a mindset – that makes a difference to the entire day.”
“It’s about motivation and being eager to overcome challenging conditions to make a positive difference in the lives of young people. It’s about being the best I can be.”
In awarding the rating, ACECQA recognised KU Macquarie Fields exemplary practice across the themes: inclusive partnerships with children and families; collaborative partnerships with professional, community or research organisations; and practice and environments that enhance children’s learning and growth.
Christine Lee, an Early Childhood Teacher, has spent the past five years at KU Macquarie Fields and spoke on behalf of the team about their drive to deliver excellence to families.
“We have a sense of understanding our families’ needs as well as really knowing our children and supporting their learning by providing a holistic approach to each child’s developmental journey,” said Christine.
“It’s about wanting to learn more. Being present and available and accepting of professional development, then using your knowledge to create an enthusiasm that is shared with your colleagues.”
ACECQA also identified KU Macquarie Field’s innovative healthy eating program, providing the preschool community with information about nutrition, food purchasing, budgeting, cooking lessons, recipes and foodbank locations.
The team was also acknowledged for embedding Playspaces and Marte Meo approaches to enable educators and families to support children’s strengths and communication cues. The team held frequent meetings to support pedagogy and dialogue around practice, ethical decision making, and responsive engagement with families.
In receiving the Excellent rating, KU Macquarie Fields joins the 77% of KU services that have received an ‘Exceeding’ rating or higher, compared to the national average of just 23% (source: ACECQA).
For more information about KU Macquarie Fields visit https://www.ku.com.au/ku.macquariefields