Great Beginnings Gilles Plains is a “rare occurrence within the child care sector”

South Australia’s first Great Beginnings early learning centre has opened its doors in Gilles Plains.

Situated in Adelaide’s fastest-growing region, this centre will help to fulfill the heightened community need for early learning services in the northern suburbs.

Gilles Plains childcare centre

Centre Manager, Ryan Kroon, said he is excited to provide a high-quality service for local families and create a homely space to nurture children into confident learners.

“Supporting children to develop healthy relationships with themselves and other people is what inspired me to work in early childhood education,” said Mr Kroon.

“When children establish healthy relationships and connections to educators, their peers and care environments, it supports emotional well-being and influences them to become confident learners.”

Great Beginnings Gilles Plains is part of G8 Education, one of Australia’s largest providers of early childhood education and care, dedicated to its purpose to create the foundations for learning for life.

G8 Education CEO Gary Carroll said Mr Kroon is a rare occurrence within the child care sector, with the Australian Productivity Commission reporting just 3 per cent of all childcare workers are men.

Centre Manager Ryan Kroon with a child

“It is an absolute positive to have both male and female role models in our educational settings,” Mr Carroll said. “It is a major benefit to children to see our educators interact, and how they communicate and work together.”

Mr Kroon joined the Great Beginnings Gilles Plains team with more than 20 years of early learning experience, as well as an Advanced Diploma in Children’s Services and Leadership Business Management.

“I was very fortunate to go straight from high school into a centre where I was really supported,” said Mr Kroon.

“I am really proud that during my time in management I have been able to support and encourage more men to join the sector.”

In order to support children’s individual learning styles and emotional needs, Mr Kroon said consistency of care is a core focus for his team of 15 educators.

“We use the circle of security model to develop trusting relationships with our children and families,” said Mr Kroon.

“Primary carers develop responsive and respectful relationships with new families, become informed of individual routines and interests and act as a safe base for children.

“That consistency really helps with that initial transition into care for both child and family.”

The centre officially opened on Monday 23 May. Personalised tours of the spacious centre and natural place spaces are available by booking online or phoning 1800 517 086.

G8 Education appoints new Head of Learning to its executive team

15 March 2022

G8 Education has affirmed its commitment to advancing quality education outcomes with the appointment of Ali Evans to its executive team as Head of Early Learning and Education.Ali Evans, Head of Early Learning and Education, G8 Education

Ms Evans brings 30 years’ experience to the role, which will lead the education strategy for G8, one of Australia’s largest providers of quality education and care.

CEO Gary Carroll said elevating the role to the executive level reflected the strategic value the organisation placed on delivering quality learning experiences.

“We want to attract and retain the most passionate teachers and educators to deliver great learning and care experiences for our children and families,” Mr Carroll said.

“Welcoming Ali to our executive team will ensure our organisation is aligned around our education strategy as we deliver on our purpose, to create the foundations for learning for life.”

Ms Evans said she was excited to be leading initiatives that would prioritise children’s development, learning and wellbeing, while also growing awareness of G8’s sector leading study pathways and offerings for Early Childhood Teachers.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to lead G8’s education strategy into the future, building on the great work that has been implemented up until now,” Ms Evans said.

“When it’s a child’s education, we have a responsibility to give them the best possible outcomes through quality teaching and learning. We couldn’t achieve this without our amazing educators and teachers.

“G8 has invested heavily in providing well-supported study pathways from school-based traineeships through to Bachelor scholarships and ongoing professional development.

“This all translates to fantastic learning outcomes for our children.”

Ms Evans started her career as a kindergarten teacher and has held senior roles within early learning as well as worked in higher education.

Her roles have focused on quality teaching and learning, leadership and mentoring, curriculum development, community partnerships, inclusion, wellbeing, and more.

“Every position I have been in has been important in making a difference for children and families daily,” she said.

Alongside her role with G8 Education, Ms Evans is also the President of Early Childhood Australia (Qld) in a voluntary capacity.