Staff Profiles -
Jo MacAskill - Head Teacher
Kia ora! I live here in the Ashburton township with my husband Steve, our two boys have grown up and left home. We enjoy the community feel this town has and working in a community centre is a wonderful experience.
I have been working in Early Childhood Education and Care since 1993, originally starting from a Playcentre base. I began teaching at Phoenix Preschool in 2003.
I have a Diploma in Teaching and Learning and Full Teacher Registration. I also have an Associate Teacher Certificate, which enables me to invite students to join us to share a wealth of knowledge and passion that our centre teachers provide each day.
I recognise that this age group will learn more now than in any other time in their lives and aim to provide as many rich experiences as possible, working with them to develop and embrace life long learning skills and strategies.
I look forward to the privilege of working in partnership with your whanau in the education of your preschooler.
Sarah Johnson - Assistant Head Teacher
Kia ora, I’m Sarah. I live in Ashburton with my husband Eion and our dog Monty.
I graduated from Christchurch College of Education in 2003 with a Bachelor of Teaching and Learning. I have been working at Phoenix Preschool since September 2005 and during that time I gained my Full Teacher Registration.
My aim is to see that children gain an understanding that they are valued and unique, secure in the knowledge that they are safe to give things a go. My hope is that they learn, develop and grow in a supportive and caring environment.
I’m fond of working with young children and take it as such a privilege to be playing a small part in their life long journey.
Hello, I am Diana Harrison. I started teaching at Phoenix Preschool in May 2004 after graduating with my Early Childhood Diploma of Teaching and Learning from the Christchurch College of Education at the end of 2003. In 2006, I completed my Bachelor of Teaching and Learning upgrade.
Prior to my ’formal’ training, I worked for seven years supporting several children with a variety of special needs, in early childhood centres and also a new entrant classroom. Previous to working for Group Special Education and Champion Centre, I was a Barnardos caregiver and also achieved a Teacher Aide Certificate and gained my Mid Canterbury Playcentre Supervisors Certificate.
In 2010 I began a Graduate Diploma of Special Needs Teaching: Early Intervention through the Auckland University.
I am married to Alan and we have three grown children.
Kia ora, I was born and lived my primary school years in Greymouth and have been in Ashburton for the past 40 years. I am married to Steve and we have a 25 year old daughter, Lani.
My first career was as a hairdresser and when Lani was 18 months old I began my next career in Early Childhood. This was at Ashburton Playcentre where I valued the parent education and being able to train as a supervisor alongside my daughter attending.
I have been at Phoenix Preschool (earlier known as Ashburton College Creche) for 24 plus years now, - WOW it must be a great place. First this was with Lani attending and then in a relieving role and I’m still here!!! Hence I have seen many changes in the care and education of Preschool children which I still find rewarding, challenging, stimulating and fulfilling, (sometimes tiring and frustrating), but I value and enjoy being a friend, teacher and carer alongside our little people.
Kia ora I am Trudy Thompson.
I live in Ashburton with my husband Glen and my two daughters Jasmine and Nikayla.
I started at Phoenix Preschool as a relieving teacher in 2003. I took up a permanent position at the beginning of 2006. I graduated with my Batchelor of Teaching and Learning from the Christchurch College of Education in December 2005.
Previously I have worked as an Education Support Worker, trained through Playcentre, worked as a Barnardos caregiver and also have been a relieving teacher in other childcare centres. I look forward to meeting and getting to know you while working with your children.
My name is Jill Sivier, I was born in Edinburgh Scotland a long time ago! I have three wonderful children Georgie, Michael and Callum and husband Tony.
I have worked in childcare for too many years to remember. I first started by providing a home based childcare facility which was great fun and very rewarding. I then had an opportunity to run Bubbles Playschool for over five years before I moved to New Zealand. In that time I gained a qualification, NVQ3 in Early Years Child Care.
I started a Phoenix Preschool as a reliever and after a few years of enjoying that role I am now permanently working two days a week. I really enjoying watching the children grow and develop into wonderful individuals.
Kia Ora Koutou,
My name is Kayla Anderson, and I am very excited to be joining the teaching team at Phoenix preschool. I have recently completed my Bachelor of Teaching and Learning (Early Childhood Education) at the University of Canterbury and am looking forward to being back in Ashburton with my partner Adam and our dog Bella. I love being outdoors, reading, and anything arty and crafty!
I am very passionate about working with children and believe in the importance of primary care giving which allows children to build secure attachments and feel confident that their needs will be met and feel safe and secure within the environment and make valuable contributions to centre life. I believe that children should experience an environment that supports their learning, extends their interests, provides opportunities for positive relationships to be formed and be recognised as valuable and unique individuals who are treated with respect. Establishing partnerships with parents and wh?nau is also very important to me; this assists with teachers getting to know the child and ensures children can reach their full potential with the love and support of those surrounding them.
I’m Marion Logan and have been teaching at Phoenix Preschool since 2007.
Although I completed my formal education, (a Bachelor of Teaching and Learning-Early Childhood), in 2006 at Christchurch College of Education, I expect and desire to continue learning for many years to come.
I’m enjoying teaching with professional, challenging, supportive and mature colleagues, great parents, and a diverse range of wonderful children. Areas of learning of particular interest to me currently include, social and emotional development, such as being attuned, secure attachments, optimal behaviour guidance and children’s connection to nature.
Di Prendergast - Office Manager
I began working here at Phoenix Preschool in October 2005 as the Office Administrator. My days of work here are currently Monday to Thursday. Before commencing my position here I worked for 20 years in the banking industry.
I live in Ashburton with my husband Mark and we have two children, Harrison and Cameron, whom both attend St Joseph school. We are very busy with many sporting after school commitments.
I enjoy working with the support of a wonderful team of committee members and along side an energetic and enthusiastic team of teachers who are passionate about their roles and thoroughly enjoy working with our children.
Hi my name is Donna Jones and I am a 38yr old mother of 2. Brandi-Jean is nearly 12 and attends Ashburton Intermediate. Alex is 10 and he is in Year 5 at Tinwald School. My partner Steve and I run a small part time business from home as well as him working at CMP.
I started at Phoenix Preschool at the beginning of 2007 as a Domestic Person. Previously I had been Assistant Manager at Couplands Bakery where I gained a lot of knowledge about safe food handling and preparation, which has come in handy here at Phoenix.
My interests are watching rugby and netball, I love cooking but most of all I love spending time with friends and my children.
Management Committee -
Our main area of concern is in the role of governance. We are responsible for designing and putting into words the vision of how we want Phoenix Preschool to operate in the future.
Chairperson: Allanah Watson
Licensee: Michelle Hosking
Secretary: Ange Scammell
Treasurer : Nathalie Hastie
Committee: Carla Davis, Megan Jansen and Sonya Davis