UWA Child Care Centre wins national acclaim

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The University of Western Australia's Early Learning Centre is the first child care centre in the State to be awarded a national "excellent rating".

Australian Children's Education and Care Quality Authority board member Mark Brown today presented child care manager Joanne Powell with a certificate in recognition of the centre's achievement.

"Services awarded the ‘excellent' rating must demonstrate exceptional education and care, leadership, a commitment to continuous improvement and forward planning, and a willingness to share their knowledge with other parts of the sector," Mr Brown said.

WA Minister for Community Services Tony Simpson then presented Ms Powell with a trophy.

"It is very rewarding to know these children are attending a service that understands the importance of making the most of a child's education from the beginning," Mr Simpson said.

Based in Nedlands behind the Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Visual Arts and the Faculty of Education, UWA's Early Learning Centre provides quality care and education for up to 100 children to the age of five.

The centre has established partnerships with several research organisations, including a project with Child Australian which enabled educators to explore new ways to document and assess children's learning.  In partnership with Signing Hands, it has trialled a new Sign Language for Babies program.

And in a joint project with the Schools of Music from UWA and the University of Melbourne, the centre has investigated the effects on children's learning of sharing musical experiences between the child's home and service environments.

In July 2013, the UWA Early Learning Centre was assessed and rated by the Education and Care Regulatory Unit as "exceeding national quality standard" in all seven national quality areas.

UWA has a long history of support for the provision of on-site childcare for the benefit of its staff and students with family responsibilities.  It was one of the first public institutions in Western Australia to establish a childcare facility.

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