Gunnedah Baptist Community Preschool and Gunnedah Preschool to work together

Malcolm and Julie Frend are hoping to strengthen early childhood education in Gunnedah.
Malcolm and Julie Frend are hoping to strengthen early childhood education in Gunnedah.

A family connection will bring benefits to Gunnedah’s youngsters.

Gunnedah Baptist Community Preschool director, Julie Frend, and her step-son and new director of Gunnedah Preschool, Malcolm Frend, are keen to work together to improve educational opportunities.

As soon as Malcolm found out he had successfully landed the director’s position, he started brainstorming with Julie about practical ways they could help each other.

“I’ve always thought that it was a weakness in Gunnedah that we weren’t working together for early childhood,” Julie said.

“[We should be] sharing ideas instead of acting like oppositions; doing the best for kids rather than having one good centre, having all good centres.”

Julie said a partnership could provide social opportunities and cost-saving measures.

“We could do excursions together and share the costs of [kids] shows,” she said.

“I just think that working together strengthens early childhood in general.”

Malcolm said the collaboration could produce positive results.

“The anticipated outcomes of this are that kids will be going off to school with a more consistent level of education across the town,” he said.

“If we’re all collaborating and sharing resources and ideas and accessing the same funding groups, and we we’re all working together, every child in Gunnedah could have access to the same education.”

Julie said it was important that each pre-school maintained its identity but in a play on words, she said she liked the idea of having “a friend in each pre-school”.