All staff at Jacaranda Preschool are experienced educators. They have a minimum qualification of Certificate III in Child Care, with Teachers holding a 4 year teaching degree. All staff are required to have current VIT Registration (Teachers) and Working with Children Checks, Anaphylaxis training, Emergency Asthma Management, First Aid and CPR training qualifications.
Professional development training and workshops keep all staff informed and abreast of current teaching theories and practices.
Ms JULIE MAURDEV Teacher/Educational Leader Bachelor of Teaching (Early Childhood Education) Graduate Diploma of Educational Studies Julie is the Educational Leader and Educator for the 4 year old Yellow Group and 3 year old Possum Group at Kingsway Drive. Julie joined Jacaranda Preschool in 2007 and brings with her over 23 years experience in teaching Preschool age children. Julie was instrumental in organising the City of Whittlesea's first Bush Kinder Program at Jacaranda Preschool - Kingsway Drive. The program commenced in 2012 and has continued to grow and develop. In 2019, Yellow Group piloted a Bush Kinder Program at Huskisson Reserve. Julie also has great pride in leading Kingsway Drive to obtain the status of "Exceeding" the National Quality Standards in 2012 and again in 2017.
Ms KATE DIGNEY Teacher/Educational Leader/ Nominated Supervisor Graduate Diploma in Education (Early Childhood) Kate joined Jacaranda Preschool in 2013 and is an Educator of the 3 Year Old Koala Group at Nebel Street and the 4 Year Old Orange Group. Kate has a background in social work where she has worked as a Case Manager for people experiencing homelessness and people with disabilities. Kate has four daughters and loves spending time with them and being involved in their activities. After being inspired with Preschool through her own children’s experiences, Kate decided on a career change and completed her teaching degree in 2012. Kate’s favourite kinder experience is reading books, cooking, gardening and creating with the children.
Ms EMMA REIMERS Teacher/Nominated Supervisor Graduate Diploma in Education (Early Childhood) Emma first joined Jacaranda Preschool in 2005 as a part-time Educator and only left to seek full-time employment. Jacaranda Preschool were able to offer Emma a full-time position in 2012 and she was more than happy to return and was instrumental in securing the Nebel Street site in 2013 where she now resides as Educator of the 4 year old program team teaching the Purple Group with Anna. Emma’s favourite Kindergarten experience is watching the children’s independence grow during the year.
Mrs JOANNE ARGYROPOULOS Teacher Bachelor of Education (Primary & Early Childhood) Joanne is currently on maternity leave and is expected to return to team teach the Blue group in Term 2. Joanne joined Jacaranda Preschool in 2014 as a graduate teacher from Victoria University and has had the pleasure of working at both Kingsway Drive and Nebel Street sites. Joanne has spent the last 6 years at Jacaranda Preschool developing her passion and knowledge of Early Childhood Education and prides herself on developing meaningful partnerships with families and providing them with any support they require through our service. Joanne’s favourite thing about Education, is the development in confidence that is visible in every child throughout their Kindergarten journey.
Ms DOLLY MOHAMED Teacher Bachelor of Education (Primary & Early Childhood) Dolly has been replacing Joanne Argyropoulos since term 2, 2019 during her maternity leave absence. Dolly is a graduate teacher from RMIT University. Dolly is fresh out of University and extremely motivated to use her exciting ideas to engage your children. Dolly believes in a play based learning environment where children are free to find their interests. Dolly has had numerous experiences of working with children through her employment in before and after school care and placements in child care, kinder, primary schools and special development schools. Dolly is an active person and loves participating in sports, she also loves to read. Dolly is approachable, open to new ideas, opinions and can also understand and speak Arabic. Dolly believes that each child is unique and special in their own way and aims to foster a kindergarten environment where children can develop and grow.
Mrs LAURA BOWEN Teacher Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood) We welcome Laura back to the Preschool following a year on maternity leave. Laura is team teaching the 4 year old Green group with Nadia. Laura has a Bachelor of Early Childhood and is passionate about the education of 4-5 year olds.
Ms PAULINE FALLS Teacher Graduate Diploma in Early Childhood Teaching. Pauline began teaching in Far East Gippsland, where she taught Music in a Primary School. She then worked in Melbourne as a Primary teacher in Grades Prep to Two. After having her own children attend Kindergarten, Pauline was inspired to study and attain a Graduate Diploma in Early Childhood Teaching from RMIT. Pauline has a Graduate Diploma in Creative Arts Practice. Her favourite Kinder Experience is creating Art experiences with the children and singing songs with them, with her guitar.
Ms NADIA DE AMICIS Teacher Bachelor of Arts/Early Childhood Education Graduate Diploma of Early Childhood Education We welcome Nadia back to the Preschool following 9 months of maternity leave. Nadia started as a teaching student at Jacaranda, before teaching a group of 3yo’s and 4yo’s in 2008. She then moved to the City of Hume for a few years before having children and returning to Jacaranda on a part time basis in 2017. 2018 marked 10 years of teaching early childhood education where she has been able to share her passion in teaching with her co workers, children and the families that she has met throughout the years. Nadia will be team teaching in the Green and Blue groups in 2020.
Ms ANNA PICCIANI Teacher Anna currently teaches at Jacaranda Nebel St, job sharing Purple Group with Emma. Anna comes with almost 30 years of kinder teaching experience and with Leanne, at Jacaranda Nebel st 20 years ago when it was Lalor Park Preschool. Anna has filled in many temporary and casual positions at both Jacaranda sites (Kingsway and Nebel St.) Anna is a highly regarded teacher in the local area and works as a relief teacher in many of the local preschools. Anna has two teenage children and speaks Macedonian.
Ms LEANNE NAUM Educator Diploma of Children’s Services (Early Childhood Education & Care) Leanne is our longest serving employee and her experience, knowledge and commitment is highly regarded and respected by her co-educators. Leanne was originally employed at Lalor Park Preschool (now known as Jacaranda Preschool - Nebel Street) in 1994 and joined Jacaranda Preschool – Kingsway Drive (formerly Kingsway Drive Preschool) in 2002 when both Preschools amalgamated. In 2013, Leanne moved back home to Nebel Street and is the Educator for the 4 year old groups. Leanne loves watching the children develop their language skills over the year and is comforted in knowing that they will progress to Primary School without a language barrier. Leanne is a Grandma and is loving her new role as “Nanny”.
Ms ROSE PENNACCHIA Educator Diploma of Children ’ s Services (Early Childhood Education & Care) Rose originally started relieving at Kingsway Drive Preschool in 1998 prior to the amalgamation and was employed as a co-educator in 2000. She is the 4 year old Educator for the Blue and Green Groups. Rose’s passion is outdoor play and participates in the Bush Kinder program through rain, hail and shine. Rose loves to watch the children develop their skills through nature and outdoor play.
Ms ANGELA TOLESKY Educator Certificate III in Children’s Services Angie joined Jacaranda Preschool in 2014 as an additional assistant for the 4 year old Yellow Group. Angie is the Educator of the 3 year old Koala group, and shares the educator role with Leanne in the Orange group and with Rose in the Green Group. Angie has a bubbly personality and loves working with children and is very excited to be a permanent member of the Jacaranda Preschool staff.
Ms TINA PARAVIZZINI Educator Certificate III in Education Support, Certificate IV in Community Services (Childcare) Tina is the Educator of the 4 year old Red Group, Tina has a wealth of experience in child care and she is a wonderful addition to our team.
Ms NATALIA KALESARAN Educator Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care Nat joined Jacaranda Preschool in 2017 as an Educator for the 3-year-old Possum group. Nat is absolutely passionate about the early years of education and truly realises the positive impact of it in a child’s life. Teaching and working with children is a joy for Nat. Part of her goal as an educator is to provide a nurturing, loving and safe environment where children can learn and experience new challenges that will help build their confidence while they play.
KAREN DI CLEMENTE Administration / Nominated Supervisor Kingsway Drive Karen joined the Jacaranda Preschool team in 2019 to assist with Administration. She brings with her 7 years of experience managing a Committee run kindergarten in the City of Whittlesea and 22 years of administration experience at the Education Department and Victoria Police. Karen has two children and was a committee member of their Primary School’s Parent Association for 9 years.