Sustainable centre leads the way
When parents drop their children off in the morning at Goodstart Deer Park, they know they are leaving their little ones in good hands.
Goodstart Deer Park centre director Misty Carter said having a great relationship with families was central to everything they did.
“As a parent and a centre director, I want to feel welcomed when I come into the centre, I want to feel listened to and I want consistency with carers so that I know they know my child,” Ms Carter said.
The centre, which has an exceeding rating under the National Quality Framework, brings all families together twice a year as part of their restaurant evenings. Parents bring in a savoury or sweet dish and all of the food is shared.
“It’s a good chance to communicate and enjoy the different types of cuisine others enjoy,” Ms Carter said. “The children love it because they see their educators out of uniform and the parents get to meet each other and spend time together.”
As an exceeding centre, Ms Carter said she and her team focussed on sustainability and going back to basics. They have a worm farm and a toddler and compost garden. Parents donate recycled materials such as newspapers, yoghurt containers, jars and cans for the home corner.
“We have lots of the children’s art work in our rooms but it’s at the child’s eye level, not the adults. Using The Goodstart Practice Guide, we’ve set up play spaces and like getting down to the child’s level so we can see how they interact,” Ms Carter said.
“But I do think relationships with the families are the key to our success. I believe they should be considered in everything you organise, from the menus, to the events you hold, to how you set up your rooms.”
Goodstart Deer Park was recently recognised in the organisation’s annual awards program, where it won a major award in the attendances category.