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Indigenous program a winner at Gladstone

Goodstart centres

An innovative indigenous program, a revamp and the introduction of extra equipment has helped Goodstart Gladstone - Toolooa Street achieve a big tick of approval.

In its assessment by the Early Childhood Care department, the centre exceeded the standards in two areas and met them in five others.

Centre director Marlies Coleman a lot of hard work and thinking outside the box had resulted in ratings.

The Indigenous program is run by Goorang Goorang elder Aunty Neola Savage, who has seen three generations of her family attend the school during the years.

Aunty Neola said the centre was a place that had always accepted her culture and felt like home.

Ms Coleman said she initially approached Aunty Neola to see if she would be interested in teaching the children Aboriginal culture and language.

“She now spends half an hour with the children each week teaching songs, stories and the language. We’re hoping by the end of this year all of the children they will all know a few words,” Ms Coleman said.

“We’ve got a very multicultural centre here with children from about 28 different cultures so we’re always learning new things.”

Ms Coleman also put the centre’s rating down to the work of her strong team who enjoyed getting things done and working together.
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