TUCKED away behind Lawrence Park, the Tathra Preschool has been quietly achieving great things in early childhood education.
The preschool recently received an ‘exceeding’ rating in the National Quality Standard - the highest achievement that can be given during this assessment visit by the Department of Education and Communities.
Areas in the national standard include educational programs and practice, relationships with children and collaborative partnerships with families and communities.
“As a staff teacher I am so thrilled to get the rating,” educator Annette Turner said.
“We know we do a really great thing here, but having someone from the outside come and see we have done a good service is really nice.”
Preschool director and teacher Jane Courtney said there is a strong community support for the school, and thanked the parents and volunteers who helped make it what it is.
“We do well because we have an amazing community,” she said.
“I wanted to say, Tathra community you have a beautiful preschool and it’s because of you.”
Ms Courtney said as teachers they never stop learning, try new approaches all the time and do different activities each year.
“The professionalism of the staff here is extremely high,” she said.
“Everything we do is best practice, reflects the research and is an ongoing process of learning.”
The not-for-profit preschool was opened in 1987 by a group of parents and community members, which was all funded and supported by the local community.
The community support continues, as this year $15,000 funding from Tathra Wharf 2 Waves was donated for a kitchen upgrade and storage, and a few years ago Clean Energy for Eternity and Tathra MTB Enduro gave funds for a 2.5kw solar system.
Research clearly supports the importance of early childhood education, Ms Courtney said.
“There is an outstanding quality in the preschools on [the] Far South Coast,” she said.
“We have an incredibly strong Preschool Directors Network which meets each term.
“All the preschools in the Bega Valley work together, share information and resources – we see ourselves as a community of preschools.”