Our Team

At Ness Reserve we have an experienced, passionate team of Teachers and Educators who believe that children learn best through play and who work to create an amazing educational kinder program.

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Learn more about our incredible team at Ness below.

4 year old Group Teacher
Monique Hayes

I am excited to have joined the Ness Reserve team and community in 2019. I began teaching four years ago and have taught Kindergarten programs in Nillumbik and Boroondara. Before having my own children, I worked as a lawyer and in public policy, but I knew that I really wanted to be a teacher and I was lucky enough to make this career change with the support of my wonderful family. I have great respect for the incredible learning that takes place in early childhood and I consider it a privilege to be part of this journey with children and their families. I love the energy and creativity that children bring to their learning and I aim to foster and reflect this in my teaching. I am interested in finding out about anything and everything and I hope to inspire children to love learning as much as I do.

Julie Smith

Children at Kindergarten are full of wonder and curiosity! I have been qualified as a kinder teacher for 27 years, of which I have been teaching at Ness since 2011. During this time teaching kinder, I have really enjoyed being a part of the children’s world and being able to watch them grow and develop their own personalities. I love being able to spend time with the children at whatever experience they are at, talking and getting to know the children when they are relaxed and happy. I enjoy nurturing a love of the outdoors and nature in the children, bringing sustainable practices to their everyday experiences, to challenge their thinking and hopefully embed those skills and practices into their ways of being.

Ness Reserve has a warm and welcoming feel to it which makes it a nice place to work. Having such beautiful surroundings also helps! It is also a special place full of community spirit! The staff and parents genuinely work together for the benefit of the children, and are often there over many years which means you can really get to know people and children over a longer period of time. This includes when they are the younger siblings waiting for ‘their turn’ to attend kinder, or older siblings who have since gone on to school.

I enjoyed being involved in my children’s pre-school and primary school life over the years, and I have continued to support them into secondary school and beyond! I enjoy spending time in nature, in my own backyard, or in the high country, enjoying the river and bush surrounds. I appreciate time with friends, and I try to make time for cooking (and eating) and photography.

4 year old Group Teacher
Angie Winduss

I am so thrilled to have recently started working as the 3 year old teacher at Ness Reserve Pre-School! The Kinder is in the most beautiful location, teeming with nature and wildlife and I feel very fortunate to come to work in such an idyllic corner of the world!

I have worked as an Early Childhood Educator for many years though most recently I have been at home raising my own 4 children.  With my youngest daughter about to start school next year, the time was right for me to return to my much-loved profession!

It is such a privilege to work with young children as they make small steps out into the wider world! Kindergarten is a very special time for children and their families. It is so wonderful to be able to facilitate and support children’s thirst for learning, creativity, socialisation and fun.

The community of families and staff at Ness Reserve are so warm, welcoming and down to earth……it is a lovely community to be a part of and I look forward to many happy years working at Ness!

3 year old Group Teacher
Fiona Smith

I have been a kinder educator for 19 years, and I have been lucky to be an educator at Ness Reserve for the past 16 years! I absolutely adore working at Ness with a fantastic teaching team. Over those years, I have met some amazing families and as I live in Diamond Creek, I quite often run into past students who are always amazed that I can remember their names. I have a wonderful life that I share with my husband and three beautiful grown up sons. I am very excited about soon becoming a mother-in-law in Feb 2019. I love spending my down time reading and going to the gym, and also watching my favourite football team – Collingwood!

3 year old Group Educator
Stacey Dabrowski

I have worked at Ness from when I was on relieving staff and studying in 2015. I have been an at Ness since the beginning of 2017. I love meeting with, talking to, and getting to know all the children, families, siblings, and extended families. I get great enjoyment out of seeing the children progress in their development, and seeing the joy on the families’ faces when they see their children’s achievements!

If you love your job, it’s not work, and that definitely relates to me in my job. Every day is unique and comes with its different accomplishments and challenges, but there will no doubt always be children rushing in to tell you all about what they have been doing! I like that these chats will also come about with past and present families when I’m out and about in our community.

I have two beautiful children, Jamie and Jasmin, and I love spending time with them. I also enjoy walking our dog, Pippa.

4 year old Group Educator
Charlotte Pratt

I have worked for 13 years in the early childhood field, the last 7 as a co-educator at Ness Reserve. I love the terrific conversations I have with the children and getting to know all our families. I particularly like our friendly and welcoming atmosphere at Ness Reserve. In my free time I like reading, yoga and bushwalking.

4 year old Group Educator

© 2019 by Ness Reserve Pre School