Staff and Management

Without doubt, our staff are the backbone of Neighborhood House. Educators want to work here because of our excellent reputation and our reputation is because of our Educators. Testament to this is the number of staff members eligible for long service leave, those who are recognised for years of dedicated and committed care and the low staff turnover. We look after our staff so they stick around long enough to educate and care for your children from whatever stage they start until they head off to primary school.

Our staff are qualified over and above minimum requirements. They have knowledge of both emotional and developmental needs of our children. Our Staff/Child ratios exceed Department of Education and Early Childhood Development Regulations. Through in service workshops we continuously extend their skills. You will surely get a sense of their nurturing, sensitive and caring natures when you visit us.

Staff Profiles

 Kate Hall. Director (Commenced May 1983) Kate has been the Director of Neighborhood House since May 1983. Kate is passionate about the Early Childhood Education Industry and constantly aims to raise the bench mark in delivering outstanding outcomes for young children and Educators under her guidance. In this time Kate has overseen the relocation of the Centre from Bridport St to Carter St and the expansion and renovations in 1995, 2002 and again in 2012.

Kate has two children, Sarah and Ben who are both young adults now.

Telstra Business Women’s Award Finalist 2005.

In 2012 Kate was awarded an "Outstanding Educator Award" and an "Advancing Practice Award" from Early Childhood & Education & Care Awards.

Qualifications – Diploma of Applied Science (Children’s Services). Diploma of Business. Occupational Health & Safety Supervisor.

 

 

Margaret  - Educator - Kindergarten Room (Commenced June 2015) Margaret joined our team having gained extensive experience as a nanny for several families in Paris for 15 years.  Since coming back to Melbourne in early 2014 with her family, Margaret has completed her Certificate III in Childrens Services and has been working in a wide range of Centres as a casual reliever.  Margaret is a mature and enthusiastic Educator who is passionate about offering high quality care and education for young children. Margaret is the co-ordinator of our ever popular French Program and ensures that French is a part of the children’s everyday life. 

Qualifications - Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care

 

  

 

 Camilla Clunas - Educator - Early Learners Wing (Commenced June 2016) (Camilla is currently on maternity leave) Camilla joined Neighborhood House as a casual employee and within 3 months earnt her position as a permanent and valuable member of our professional team.  Camilla has had extensive experience in Early Years Education as well as having been a ski instructor overseas she is multilingual and speaks fluent Norwegian, German and Swedish as well as English.  Camilla was promoted to the Early Learner leadershi position in October 2018 during which time she has overseen the Educational Program and routines with outstanding dedication and professionalism. Camilla requested a change in her role for 2020.  In her spare time Camilla enjoys languages, cross-country skiing, cycling, hiking, camping and adventure travel.

Qualifications - Diploma of Children’s Services.  Currently working towards a Bachelor in Early Years Education

 

 

 Claudia Losada - Part-time relieving Educator (Commenced August 2016) Claudia began her journey at Neighborhood House as a student on placement while completing her Diploma during which time she displayed a huge degree of professionalism and maturity. On completion of her studies Claudia joined our team on a part-time basis to relieve in all rooms. Claudia has first hand experience with Preschool children as she has a young son Santi who is 6 years old.

Qualifications - Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care

 

 

 

Wilbert Romulo - Centre Chef (Commenced June 2017) Wilbert relocated to Melbourne from New Zealand just prior to commencing at Neighborhood House where he had gained 17 years experience as a chef across a range of different sectors including flight catering, hospital catering and Pre-school catering.  Wilbert’s previous role included catering for 140 children each day including those with a range of allergies, food preferences and religious dietary requirements.  Wilbert has an impeccable reputation that includes his great work ethic, strong attention to detail and superb ability to prepare nutritious and popular meals for children.

Qualifications - Food Services Course, Module 1, Module 2 and Module 3

  

  

 

 

Eimear O’Hanlon - Team Leader - 3 Year Old Kindergarten Room (Commenced August 2018) Eimear joined our team with extensive experience in a range of different age groups and settings.  Eimear has worked in Early Years centres and schools in Ireland and Melbourne and has experience and knowledge of working with children with individual needs.  Her personal philosophy of high quality play based education focusing on children’s individual interests aligns closely with Neighborhood House’s philosophy.  We are delighted to have Eimear as part of our teaching team.

Qualifications: Bachelor - Early Childhood Studies (Ireland) 

  

 

   

 

 

 

 

Lynette Tah - Educational Leader (Commenced April 2019) Lynette joined our team as the Educational Leader after 5 years of experience at another Early Years service in Sydney.  Lynette is equipped with pedagogical leadership to create commonly accepted values and share vision for the teams in which she works within.  Lynette’s greatest strengths are her conscientious, high level of initiative and reliability.

Qualifications: Master of Teaching (Early Childhood)

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 Rena Peng - Supporting Teacher in Preschool Room (Commenced January 2012) Rena is a very popular and valuable member of our team who has the ability and flexibility to work with all age ranges and the various Educators within Neighborhood House.  In October 2015 Rena began maternity leave and in December she and her husband Jimmy welcomed their little son Jason to their family.  Rena returned to Neighborhood House in early September 2016 to regain her position of Teacher.  Rena works a Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

Qualifications: Double Degree: Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of English Education Harbin University - China.  Master Degree: Master of Teaching (Primary) - Latrobe University; Graduate Diploma of Early Childhood Education - RMIT University 

 

Asli Mert - Teacher in charge of the Preschool room (Commenced December 2019) Asli joined our team with extensive international experience.  As a teacher Asli has worked within an english immersion environmnet throughout her career having taught in international Preschools she has gained an extensive insight into what makes a productive and progressive classroom while gaining great experience with culturally diverse groups of individuals.  Asli is the proud Mum of her son who is in Junior school.

Qualifications:  Bachelor of Arts - Early Childhood Education

 

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

 Rachel Lee - Teacher  (Commenced January 2020) Rachel joins our team as a fully trained and registered Early Childhood teacher who has had extensive international experience in the under 3-year old age range.  Rachel’s teaching philosophy centres around the belief that every child is a unique individual who is competent and learns at their own pace.

Qualifications:  Graduate Diploma - Teaching (Early Childhood)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brooke Reynolds - Support Teacher - Kindergarten Room (Commenced January 2020) Brooke has recently completed her Bachelor of Early Childhood Teaching and joins us with 3 years experience in the outside of school hours sector.  Brooke is mature, enthusiastic and committed to high quality education for all children.

Qualifications: Bachelor of Early Childhood Teaching

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Fathima Zareen - Preschool Educator (Commenced November 2015) Fathima joined our team as an Educator who could work in all age groups.  After 2 years Fathima was given the opportunity to be the supporting Educator in a Preschool funded program.  In early 2019 Fathima went on maternity leave and soon became Mum to a beautiful little boy called Zaid.  Fathima returned to Neighborhood House in early 2020 and she now works Wednesday, Thursday and Fridays in the Preschool room.  Fathima is an experienced Educator who forms superb bonds with children and has a strong focus on learning outcomes for all children.  Fathima is a popular and valued member of our team.

Qualifications:  Diploma in Children’s Services

 

 

 

 

 

Jennifer Lithotomos - Educator - Early Learners Wing (Commenced November 2020) Jen joined our team post Covid-19 with extensive previous experience at Oakleigh Grammar School.  Jen strives for excellence in care and programs for all children with the aim of encouraging children to develop a love of learning and thirst for knowledge.  Jen is nurturing, empathic and enthusiastic and ultimately enjoys being a part of a collaborative team.

Qualifications:  Bachelor of Early Childhood Degree; Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care

 

 

 

 

 

 

Iliada Fagridas - 2IC - Preschool Room (Commenced January 2021) Iliada is an enthusiastic Early Childhood Teacher who fosters a chid centred curriculum, child creativity and active learning  Iliada’s strengths include differentiating teaching to meet children’s diverse learning needs and fostering an inclusive environment for chidren with diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds.  Iliada has a particular interest in creative arts which she loves to incorporate into the curriculum.

Qualifications: Bachelor of Education (Primary & Early Childhood) Diploma in Early Childhood Education & Care 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vanessa Lopez - 2IC - Early Learners Wing (Commenced February 2021) Vanessa joined our team with a huge range of global experience.  Vanessa was born in America and has had extensive experience working in Spain and China as an ESL (English as a second language) and a EAL (English as an additional language) Teacher.  Vanessa’s specialist interests are embedding creativity into Programs and sharing her Spanish language skills with the children she works with.  We are delighted to have Vanessa as a part of our professional team.

Qualifications: Masters of Teaching: Early Years and Primary Education

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elena Angel - Team Leader - Early Learners Wing (Commenced May 2021) Elena joined our team with 16 years of previous experience in educating children under 3 years of age and leading and mentoring teams throughout that time.

Elena is passionate and creative in her teaching and is mature and has a wonderful sense of humour.  In her 'spare' time Elena is an experienced Greek school teacher and Mum of her son Dimitris who attends primary school.

Qualifications: Advanced Diploma / Associate Degree in Early Childhood