Early Childhood Education (ECE) forms the core of social and community development, in realisation of which, the government actively encourages and provides partial funding for childcare centres.
“Children are the most valuable assets of every family, community and society,” says Rippon Sandhu, the driving force behind ‘Discoveries Educare Services,’ that is spread throughout the Auckland region.
A qualified teacher and a mother of two children, she established the institution in 2009, which has steadily grown to provide quality teaching and learning in an environment that is conducive for the amusement and growth of children.
‘Discoveries Educare Services’ today accounts for 600 children and a complement of 150 dedicated staff at 13 centres and two home-based facilities.
Ms Sandhu said that as a New Zealand based Early Childhood Education provider, the focus is on developing growth and well-being of children at all levels.
“We have created a secure, nurturing, caring and welcoming environment to encourage the children to grow in mind and body. Our commitment is to play an active and long lasting role in each child’s life journey and progress, with a focus on nurturing and education for our children,” she said.
“At Discoveries Educare, we pride in offering consistent and high standard care and education. We believe that a partnership between the home and the centre are important for the family in strengthening the bonds of the family unit,” she said.
As a responsible ECE provider, Discoveries Educare fosters an environment that upholds the bicultural heritage of New Zealand and the principles of partnerships inherent in the Te Tiriti O Waitangi.
“These principles are central to the rich diversity of children, families and all our backgrounds. We support the cultural identity of all children by affirming and celebrating cultural differences,” Ms Sandhu said.
The strength of rich cultural heritage can be experienced in all the centres of this institution as children and staff mark all cultural days and events.
“Such events encourage our children, families and communities, to respect each other’s culture and tradition.”
Learning is fun
Ms Sandhu said that the curriculum at Discoveries Educare is child-centred and is built on the learning that takes place in the family, community and the wider world.
“We believe that there are multiple pathways to a successful child learning experience originating from the child’s interest. Our programmes are activity and development oriented and interlinked with a set of curriculum beliefs.
“In our commitment to uphold our communication with our parents and families, we have made ourselves available and accessible in all forums for our parents and whanau, i.e. our website, Educa (online portfolio) and Facebook,” she said.
Teachers and staff at all the centres of this growing institution are passionate about children and their education and are qualified, dedicated, multicultural, and experienced.
“We offer quality teacher to child ratio of 1:8 for over two’s and 1:4 for infants, that is above the required national standards of Ministry of Education.,” Ms Sandhu said.
Discoveries Educare offer nutritious and healthy vegetarian meals freshly cooked onsite daily with an experienced cook for each centre.
This fosters the institution’s belief in providing and promoting young learners, life-long healthy eating habits. This is also in respect to the different religions and different dietary requirements of all connected families.
Ms Sandhu said that the centres follow food plans that are aligned with the healthy recipes of the Heart Foundation.
“We believe that cost should not stand in the way of access to quality ECE education, and hence we aim to keep our fees low and affordable. We also accept childcare subsidy from Work and Income for families that qualify. We cater for children from 0 years to five years. We offer 20 free ECE hours for children about three years of age with an extra 10 hours free to support our transition to school programmes.”
The centres arrange regular excursions for children.
“In supporting parents and families, our centres offer a discount incentive of 50% off for the first six weeks,” Ms Sandhu said.
For more information, please visit www.discoverieseducare .co.nz or call 0800- 3382273.