WINNER: Gympie’s best child care teacher ‘blown away’
There were 24 worthy candidates, but only one Gympie region childcare teacher could be voted the winner.
In a tight finish it was Tahlia Jayne Goodman-Jones of Echelon Family Day Care who finished on top of The Gympie Times’ reader poll searching for the region’s “best” – or favourite – child care educator.
Tahlia, or “Miss Tahlia” as she is known to her adoring students, pulled away to win with 12 per cent of the final vote, followed closely by Tracey Salter (Kids on Calton) and Jill Gilchrist (Alma St Pre Prep) on 10 per cent each.
Miss Tahlia said she was “blown away” by the result.
“I’m a little bit shocked, I’m blown away that so many parents have taken the time to vote for me, and to be nominated with the other educators it’s just so lovely,” she said.
“It’s not always easy, but it’s definitely rewarding. I’m very lucky and honoured that the parents trust me with their precious little people.
“I know what it’s like as a mum myself to leave your child with someone, it’s not easy so for me it’s just making sure that I always have a really warm, welcoming, caring environment so not only are the kids happy with me but the parents are going to be OK to leave their kids and have a good day themselves.”
Miss Tahlia’s journey in the field started in 2011 when she was still a school student, and began to flourish when she founded Echelon as a home-based family day care centre in 2016.
It’s a passion that remains as strong as ever for Miss Tahlia today.
“I think it’s just so rewarding watching the kids grow and develop. Even when they move on into school I have a lot of families who contact me and share how their children are going,” she said.
“Being able to make that impact in a child’s life and to watch them grow is beautiful.”
Congratulations to our winner and all nominees!