Community rallies to support Macedon Ranges preschool
The Sector > Workforce > Advocacy > Community rallies to try and save Macedon Ranges Montessori Preschool

Community rallies to try and save Macedon Ranges Montessori Preschool

by Freya Lucas

June 21, 2024

Community members, staff and families are rallying to boost enrolments for the Macedon Ranges Montessori Preschool in a bid to protect the service from a potential closure, local news source Midland Express reports


Committee member Moya Grech described current enrolment levels as being “at crisis point,” something she attributes to both the cost of living crisis and the Victorian government’s Free Kinder offering.


The service has been in operation for nearly 40 years, however without enrolments, it simply cannot continue.


“Enrolment numbers are not where we need them to be and the committee is overworked with members taking on multiple roles as there are now less parents involved,” Ms Grech said.


“It’s so upsetting. It’s not going to make it financially past this year if it continues as it is. We really don’t want to see it closed.”


As the service works to reach the 50 enrolments it needs to be viable, the committee is also exploring early years management options to keep it in operation. 


“We hope to attract the right early years management team to keep the preschool open as Montessori,” Ms Grech said.

“We didn’t want to give up without people knowing the current situation. There might be someone out there who would like to take it on.”

Founding educator Jeevanie Mirando expressed her devastation on learning of the dire situation facing the preschool as it approaches its 40th anniversary, recalling the passionate community response which happened in 1985, when citizens rallied to repair the former Riddells Creek Primary School site and turn it into a beacon for early learning. 


For Ms Mirando, establishing the new preschool was an exciting challenge. She watched it grow and thrive during her 18 years educating there.


The current priority for Macedon Ranges Montessori Preschool is to boost enrolments.


Committee members have had some promising enrolment enquiries since sharing their fears, and have been transparent with those enquiring that they may need an alternative option for care.


“The last thing we want to do is scare people away but we have had to tell them to have a back-up option in mind,” Ms Grech said.

The committee continues to seek an early years management service to continue running the preschool into the future and welcomes any interested parties to contact them.


An information session will be held at the preschool on July 25 from 7pm to 8pm. An online option is also available. For more information, contact the preschool.


To read the local coverage of this story please see here

Download The Sector's new App!

ECEC news, jobs, events and more anytime, anywhere.

Download App on Apple App Store Button Download App on Google Play Store Button