Catholic Early Learning Centre (CELC)

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Catholic Early Learning Centre St John XXIII Parish, Glenwood-Stanhope Gardens provides quality early learning for children 3 to 5 years that:

  • is founded on Catholic values and traditions
  • engages children in experiences that promote their desire for learning
  • encourages younger children’s curiosity and the skills to explore and investigate
  • promotes the development of positive relationships
  • is supported by a safe, nurturing and home-like learning environment

Your child will be taught by highly qualified educators who will tailor learning to meet their specific skills, interests, abilities and learning needs. We value our partnership with families and seek your active involvement in the learning journey, through shared decision-making and open communication.

We are open from 8:15am to 3:45pm during school terms (closed on public holidays).


About Us

We are situated beside the St John XXIII Church in Stanhope Gardens at 160 Perfection Ave.

The centre is located within the grounds of the Catholic Learning Community of Stanhope Gardens. We are the building with the red roof on the right hand side of the path leading to the main office.

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Acting Director
Monday – Friday




Director (on maternity leave)
Monday – Friday




Monday, Tuesday, Thursday




Cert III
Tuesday – Friday




Monday – Friday




Wednesday – Friday




Cert III
Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri




Cert III Casual
Monday, Tuesday only




Cert III Casual
Fridays only



The Fee Scale per Daily Session is as follows:

1-3 Day
4 Day
3 Year
(Age 4-5)
Daily Fee
(Age 4-5)
Daily Fee 
(Age 3-5)  Daily Fee
$43 $49 $14 $67

* Equity Fee is for children of disadvantaged families (low-income card) and/or Aboriginal or Torres Straight Islander children

Our centre is licensed by the Department of Education and caters for up to 40 children. We are committed to the continual improvement in the centre’s policy and procedures and endeavour to provide the highest quality care and education for each child.


The core principles in this Code of Ethics are based on the fundamental and prized values of the profession. They act to guide decision making in relation to ethical responsibilities. These core principles require a commitment to respect and maintain the rights and dignity of children, families, colleagues and communities.

  • Each child has unique interests and strengths and the capacity to contribute to their communities.
  • Children are citizens from birth with civil, cultural, linguistic, social and economic rights.
  • Effective learning and teaching is characterised by professional decisions that draw on specialised knowledge and multiple perspectives.
  • Partnerships with families and communities support shared responsibility for children’s learning, development and wellbeing.
  • Democratic, fair and inclusive practices promote equity and a strong sense of belonging.
  • Respectful, responsive and reciprocal relationships are central to children’s education and care.
  • Play and leisure are essential for children’s learning, development and wellbeing.
  • Research, inquiry and practice-based evidence inform quality education and care.

We believe that young children come to CELC with a wealth of knowledge and experiences. They are seen as dynamic, inquisitive, innovative and purposeful learners. We honour the spiritual uniqueness of children and families by promoting an atmosphere of collaboration and community. We strive to create a centre of excellence through inclusive practices that are reflective of the mission of Catholic education.

Being recognises the significance of the here and now in children’s lives. It is about the present and them knowing themselves, building and maintaining relationships with others, engaging with life’s joys and complexities, and meeting challenges in everyday life.
(BELONGING, BEING AND BECOMING: The Early Years Learning Framework for Australia, 2009)

Children are naturally researchers who are given the opportunity at CELC to learn through self selected investigation, creativity and play. We value play and creativity as ways for children to express their ideas and build new theories. We believe that providing a safe and stimulating environment encourages their ability to observe perceive, investigate, imagine and problem solve the world around them.

Becoming reflects this process of rapid and significant change that occurs in the early years as young children learn and grow.
(BELONGING, BEING AND BECOMING: The Early Years Learning Framework for Australia, 2009)

Relationships are essential to building belonging and shaping who we are and who we become. We seek ways to build an inclusive environment that encourages and respects diversity. We recognise and value the cultures children bring and nurture them in their search for meaning, connection and joy in life – their 'spirituality'. We respect the beliefs and values of the families who belong to our community. We support our children in their growing understanding of Catholic values and traditions that are central to our ethos.

Belonging acknowledges children’s interdependence with others and the basis of relationships in defining identities.
(BELONGING, BEING AND BECOMING: The Early Years Learning Framework for Australia, 2009)

’Preschool is not a preparation for life but life itself’ - Jerome Bruner.

Together we are creating a quality learning environment where children can live, learn and grow. We value positive relationships and see this as the heart of our community. We work collaboratively to develop rich learning environments that promote inquiry and research. We are committed to fostering our image of the child as connected, creative, inquisitive, reflective and spiritual. We nurture our children in their ongoing relationship with the world around them.


'Our mission is to make visible to the whole community the rich culture of childhood and to engage in a continuing dialogue related to teaching and learning. Our image of the child is that of being competent, intelligent, a co-constructor of knowledge and a researcher actively seeking to make meaning of the world, often in collaboration with others.'

- Reflections ‘Reggio Emilia Principles within Australian contexts’. Jan Millikan 2003:33.



In relation to children…

  • A variety of resources, materials and experiences will be provided to children in all areas of their development; physical, social, emotional, creative, cognitive and language.

  • The program will include interactions where staff and children can explore Catholic values, social justice, equality, empathy and responsibilities.

  • Children will be considered and consulted wherever possible on matters that affect them.

  • Self-help skills are encouraged and facilitated by staff so that children become increasingly autonomous whereby their self-esteem and confidence will flourish.

  • There will be a focus on ‘Learning to be’ and ‘Learning to grow’.

  • There will be a holistic approach to learning, which includes growing; as a person, as member of their family; as a member of the community, as a citizen as well as academically.

In relation to families…

  • The centre will have an open door policy, inviting families to participate at a level they feel comfortable.

  • Open communication will be achieved by the use of notice boards, meetings, parent handbooks, communication books and daily interactions.

In relation to the centre…

  • The centre will be kept safe and clean at all times.

  • The environment of the centre will be aesthetically pleasing; it will be a positive and professional place.

  • The environment will be thoughtfully set up to allow for children to be self-motivated.

In relation to staff…

  • Staff will know the children, their interests, abilities, strengths and needs by using a variety of observation tools.

  • Staff will use a wide range of teaching methods to effectively educate all children

  • Staff will balance intentional teaching with child-initiated activities.

  • Staff will use critical thinking, observation and reflection to continually improve their teaching practices.

At the Catholic Early Learning Centre (CELC) we believe that each child is a valuable and unique individual created by God. We value each child as an individual who can make choices about their own learning. We believe that children are theory builders and problem solvers, who learn best by making meaning of their world through play, relationships and experiences. We value children as social beings and recognise that they co-construct knowledge with peers, their families and our staff.

We value play as a learning process that enables each child to learn through concrete ‘hands on’ experiences such as doing, creating, experimenting, predicting, imagining, achieving, investigating, and identifying strengths.

Learning through play is how children “organise and make sense of their social worlds” Using innovative and creative activities as enriching learning experiences. Children will be encouraged to discover ‘self’ and feel safe to explore within the world around them. We will encourage children to have ownership of their learning, which will empower them and build a passion for knowledge. Children should feel a sense of belonging in their environment; we will nurture their being while celebrating their present and future and what they are becoming.

Our CELC aims to provide young children with opportunities to maximise their potential and develop a foundation for future success in learning . We work collaboratively with families in promoting children's learning by implementing the Early Years Learning Framework and applying best practice as reflective of the National Quality Framework.

We provide an enriching inclusive environment that recognises diversity, including culture and ability. We work in partnership with families, Catholic school leaders and Catholic parishes to promote Gospel values and traditions while respecting the individuality of families and children.

CELC educators work in collaborative partnerships with the school community, intervention services and families. The CELC staff members value all stakeholders’ knowledge and contributions by embedding trust and free communication in a reciprocal relationship that is respectful of one another by sharing insights and perspectives concerning each individual child.

Our Educators will:

  • Listen to each child’s melody when they are using ‘the hundred languages’ (Malaguzzi), their bodies, their movement, their eyes, their hands, their silences, their words and their ‘being’.

  • Observe and value the process of thinking as our children develop new understandings through constructing, investigating, and creating in their ‘becoming’.

  • Develop mutually respectful partnerships with both children and families within the context of our parish community, Blessed John XXIII so as to build ‘belonging’.

  • Value the child not only as an individual but also as a member of their family, cultural group and the wider community by helping them find their place in them.

  • Ensure that documentation is visible through recording our children’s everyday experiences and discoveries in order to develop their individual potential and allow them to reflect on their learning journey. ‘Our task … is to help children climb their own mountains, as high as possible.’ – Malaguzzi.

  • Encourage children to be self guided learners through questions, provocation and problem solving in order to empower our children to build a passion for learning. We believe ‘the mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be ignited.’ – Plutarch.

  • Create an environment that engages, captures and honours the interests of our children by stimulating their imaginations, promoting creativity and enhancing the aesthetics of the environment so it becomes the third teacher.

  • Respect the needs and rights of the children to make choices by empowering them to take responsibility for their actions, their environment and their learning.

  • Recognise that children are living and learning in a technology rich society by incorporating the use of digital technologies in learning.

  • Value our role as educators by taking part in constant inquires, investigations and professional development around our knowledge of how children learn in order to deepen our understandings.

What we want to see is the child in pursuit of knowledge and not knowledge in pursuit of the child’ – George Bernard Shaw.

The Catholic Early Learning Centre is committed to engaging in and promoting sustainable practices. We are committed to reducing our impact on the environment for the sake of future generations.

Our goals are to:

  • Promote respect for, and an appreciation of, the natural environment among all at the service
  • Foster children’s capacity to understand and respect the natural environment, and the interdependence between people, plants, animals and the land
  • To develop positive attitudes and practices in relation to sustainable practices, which includes recycling, reusing and reducing rubbish
  • Participate in and promote current council sustainability programs for preschools and the community.

There are many ways you can engage in sustainable practices at home too.

If you want more information about caring for our environment please click on the following links:

The system of Catholic schools in the Diocese of Parramatta is one of the largest employers in the western Sydney region.  

Our recruitment, selection and appointment processes reflect the core values of the vision statement for the Parramatta system of schools. Our system of schools seeks to be:

  • authentically Catholic
  • inviting, inclusive and just
  • committed to quality teaching and learning
  • supportive of the ongoing development of staff

Principles of equal opportunity apply at every stage of our employment processes.


Casual Educators wanted

We are currently recruiting experienced Casual Child Care Educators to work within the Catholic Early Learning Centre at Stanhope Gardens.

You will be working with an experienced and friendly team to provide a fun and stimulating educational program for children aged 3-5 years.

Ideally you will be available to work between the hours of 8:00am-4:00pm.

To express interest in this opportunity please forward a copy of your resume and qualifications to


Permanent Positions

Search for permanent positions at Catholic Education, Diocese of Parramatta

Enrol Today

Children are eligible for enrolment in the CELC on or after their third birthday. Priority of access is given to children from Disadvantaged backgrounds such as children from Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander backgrounds, children who are listed on their parents Centrelink Concession Card and children turning four or five before the 31st of July in that school year.

The Catholic Early Learning Centre St John XXIII Parish Stanhope Gardens has been rated as Exceeding the National Quality Standards in all seven Quality Areas