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Jae Fraser - Founder

Little Scholars School of Early Learning was created by Jae Fraser, a university-qualified Early Childhood Educator with more than 20 years hands-on experience in Early Childhood Education. Academic credentials include a Bachelor of Education, Advanced Diploma of Early Childhood Education, and several business management qualifications spanning across the many spectrums of the child care and education industry.

To complement these achievements, Jae has worked in all sectors of the child care industry from teacher through to centre management and operations senior management positions throughout Australia and Singapore. Jae is an executive board member of the Queensland and National Australian Child Care Alliances and is an active advocate for children and education.

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Melanie Excell - Operations Manager

​Melanie Excell has worked in the Early Childhood Education and Care industry since 2002 and is a university-trained teacher, holding a Bachelor of Education. She’s passionate about early education and preparing children for a successful future. Melanie has worked in various roles in the sector including teaching, Centre Director, Area Manager of both small and large groups of centres across Australia and more recently a senior management position in a large childcare company.

Melanie manages her campuses wearing many hats, ensuring that our centres are meeting the needs of the parent as well as the child, ensuring the very best outcomes for all involved. Melanie is dedicated to the early education sector to ensure the best level of care is available to our future generations. She is also passionate about mentoring, guiding and training our educators to ensure they are fully equipped to deliver a high standard of care and education to all children in their care.

Melanie enjoys working collaboratively with all stakeholders to create safe, welcoming and playful learning environments in our centres, which will, in turn, provide an optimal learning space for children.

Charlotte Ivanes - Area Manager

Charlotte Ivanes has been in the Early Childhood Education industry since 2001 and holds an Advanced Diploma in Children’s Services. Her roles have included working as a trainee, to director, as well in educational leadership roles on a national level. Charlotte is focused on providing warm environments for learning and connection for all children.

“I’m very proud to be part of the Early Childhood sector. I see our role as valuable in shaping children’s lives and supporting their families,” Charlotte says. “I love working closely with my teams and families to ensure children have the best start to life.”

Our team is comprised of genuinely gifted minds

Campus Manager Ashmore

Sasha Maher

I have been with Little Scholars for over 5 years now and have absolutely enjoyed my time with them.

I have been with Little Scholars for over 5 years now and have absolutely enjoyed my time with them, I can honestly say that I love my job and that Little Scholars are my extended family!
What I love about working with Little Scholars is the impact that I have at the Campus with the children, families, and educators – it is inspiring to know that what we do as educators is influencing the lives of so many in a positive way.
I have grown in many ways since working with Little Scholars, learning all the time, and I am currently being supported while I study my Bachelor of Early Childhood.
The Philosophy is in line with my personal values, and I love how the children are the forefront of all the decisions and practices that we make. I could not see myself being happier anywhere else, Little Scholars is my family, my home, and my future.
Campus Manager George St

Ricky-Lee Jones

Early education and care is what I know best, it’s my passion. I have worked in the sector for over 13 years. I started my journey as a Nursery Educator and over the course of my career, I have worked with all age groups. I have had the pleasure of being Campus Manager of Little Scholars George Street since 2018.

Ricky-Lee began her career in early childhood education in 2008, beginning as a nursery educator and over her career working with all age groups. She's been Campus Manager at Little Scholars George Street since 2018.

"As campus manager it’s important I create a loving environment where children can flourish, learn, and grow. I want all children to reach their potential in life, no matter what direction they take.

Ricky-Lee says relationships with families are critical for her, acknowledging the relationships start from the moment families enquire at the centre.

"I know starting care can be a bit scary and difficult," Ricky-Lee says. "I will always be there to support families, listen to their needs and create a smooth transition to care following the routines families have set up at home. From there, I will continue to support you and your family every step of the way through the early years."

Ricky-Lee says as leader of her team, she believes it's important to inspire and motivate. She believes in continual learning professionally and keeping up-to-date with the latest movements in Early Education.

"Mentoring my team is one of the most enjoyable aspects of my job!"

Campus Manager Redland Bay

Terri Clarkson

My career in Early Childhood Education started in 1995 and I have been a manager of several centres in that time. Over the last few years, I have been following the Little Scholars journey and have been thoroughly inspired by the beautiful environments, extra-curricular activities, and family time programs. When the opportunity arose in 2020 for me to join the team I jumped on board with enthusiasm.

Terri holds hold an Associate Diploma of Education (childcare) and an Advanced Diploma in Children's Services. Terri joined Little Scholars in 2020, and says she loves working within the community where she lives.

"I absolutely love working with families and supporting parents to ensure that they are confident that their children are receiving the best early education and care available," Terri says. "I also love the endless cuddles and smiles from our children."

She says the extra care and attention to detail, the campus environments, the continual purchasing of new resources, the generous budgets, the ongoing opportunities for personal development ensures her job satisfaction levels are always high.

"At Little Scholars you feel valued not only as an employee but as a person. I cannot imagine working anywhere else!"

Campus Manager Yatala

Taylor Habershon

I joined the Little Scholars family 6 years ago where I started off as an assistant Educator at Yatala.

I joined the Little Scholars family 6 years ago where I started off as an assistant Educator at Yatala, and then Little Scholars provided me the opportunity to be mentored, build on my confidence and further my career as a Campus Manager. I can confidently say that Little Scholar’s philosophy aligns with everything I believe in, not only as an educator but as a parent. When you are given the opportunity to be who you are and express yourself and beliefs within an early education curriculum, it only inspires you to become the best version of yourself. If I could describe my experience working at Little Scholars in one sentence it would be: the feeling of having a home away from home.
Enrolments Officer

Jaimie-Lee White

I've been with Little Scholars since 2019, starting as Administrative Assistant at our George Street campus to now the Enrolments Officer for Little Scholars' support office.

Jaimie-Lee joined the Little Scholars in November 2019 as the Administration Assistant for George Street and progressed her way up to Little Scholars' Enrolments Officer. Jaimie-Lee has worked in the early child care industry since 2009 and has had various roles such as educator, lead educator, 2IC and Centre Manager for a short time. I was the Administration Assistant but also spent time as a float educator when needed. In December 2020 she was able to progress her career within the company to Enrolments Officer.
"Little Scholars believed in me and gave me the opportunity to go further in my career when I was accepted for the Enrolments Officer position. They are always open and supportive of staff wanting to further their education and participate in professional development, and I know I would always be encouraged to take on any future endeavors."
Administration Support

Michelle Churchouse

I began my career in the childcare industry more than 30 years ago in New Zealand, and started with Little Scholars in January 2022. I am enjoying being a support to Campus Managers, and assisting with all administration within the Support office.

Michelle started her career in the childcare industry in New Zealand, and with vast experience beginning more than 30 years ago, Little Scholars was thrilled to welcome her to the team in early 2022. Michelle moved to Australia in 2000, and after working for about 10 years in management in another industry, she returned to childcare and has worked as an administrator for many years in several Early Childhood Education facilities.
"I am enjoying working in such a rewarding role with so much variety and love working for such a supportive company!" she says.
Campus Manager Burleigh

Alice Micklewright

My journey with Little Scholars began in 2015 and the moment I started as a Little Scholar educator I felt like I had found a place whose values aligned with mine.

Alice has been in the Early Childhood Education and Care industry since 2008, and her journey with Little Scholars began in 2015. She says the moment she started as a Little Scholar educator, she felt like she had found a place whose values aligned with hers.
"I love the passion that goes into every element of Little Scholars and the foundation of why we do what we do every day. Over the years, I have had an incredible amount of opportunity to learn and grow," Alice says. Alice started as an Assistant Educator and had the opportunity to be a Lead Educator, Educational Leader, Assistant Campus Manager to now a Campus Manager.
"I was supported to rise to the challenge across each of my roles and have been pushed to be the best educator and leader that I can be. If there was one sentence, I could describe my experience working at Little Scholars it would be 'One big functionally dysfunctional family that wants the best for the future of our little people.'"
Campus Manager Nerang

Renee Hallam

I have been a Campus Manager for about two years and my journey working at Little Scholars has been incredible.

I have been a Campus Manager for about two years and my journey working at Little Scholars has been incredible. It is all about the children and the quality, which is what matters most, and Little Scholars resonates with my own personal values and philosophical approaches. At Little Scholars, we are beyond supported and encouraged when it comes to personal and professional growth and development and Little Scholars are always on board with supporting me to develop my skills through a variety of methods and training options. I love my role and find the most rewarding aspect is being able to support all children, families and educators as well being a part of the lives of our future generations. If I could describe my journey working at Little Scholars in one sentence – it would be “go for it, we have the most inspiring owners and leadership support team.
Campus Manager Redland Bay South

Carly Patterson

I have been in the childcare industry since 2000. I feel so privileged to be in a position where we can provide real and meaningful outcomes for families – and support them on this learning journey.

Carly Patterson has been in the Early Education and Childcare industry since 2000, and has worked with all different age groups, from nursery age right through to school-age children. She holds an Advanced Diploma in Children's Services, and began her career as a relief educator and has progressed through to a Lead educator and now a Campus Manager.

"I have been working at Little Scholars since March 2020 and I have felt so overwhelmingly blessed to have been given the opportunity to move up as a Campus Manager with so much support behind me the whole way. I have found a working space that inspires me with the way they put children and families first, and the amazing range of experiences that are provided for the children. Watching children grow and develop into amazing little people is the most rewarding thing about my role, and watching the children’s smiling faces as they walk through the door makes my day. We have our own Little Scholars family.”

Campus Manager Ormeau 2

Jordie Llewellyn

My journey with Little Scholars started in 2016 where I began as an assistant educator at Little Scholars Redland Bay Campus, where I then became a lead educator and moved into the Campus manager position at Little Scholars Ormeau 2 in early December 2021.

Jordie began her career at Little Scholars in 2016, after she completed her Certificate 3 and 4 in Early Childhood Education and Care. She started as an assistant educator at Little Scholars Redland Bay Campus, from there she moved up into lead educator, then eventually became Campus manager at Little Scholars Ormeau 2 in December 2021.

"Little Scholars have supported my career growth and helped lead me to the path I am on as a Campus Manager," Jordie says. "I began in childcare for the strong passion I felt when caring and unconditionally loving children and creating beautiful meaningful bonds with each child and their families."

Administration Manager

Anne Blom

Anne's career in Early Childhood Education and Care began in 2007, and she is a qualified educator having worked in all levels of the sector.

Anne's career in Early Childhood Education and Care began in 2007, and since then, Anne has worked in all levels of the sector from hands-on educator to holding the position of National Administration Manager for Australia’s largest Child Care Provider. Anne specialises in the monitoring of Kidsoft and iDebitPro and assists all Centre Managers with their administrations duties to allow them to focus on the children and business.
Campus Manager Deception Bay

Natalie Carey

If I could describe my journey working at Little Scholars, it would be that it's become my second family.

Natalie has a long-standing love of the childcare industry, having started her career in early childhood education in 2004, starting as an educator and working through the ranks. She completed her Advanced Diploma of Children's Services in 2010. She has been a campus manager at Deception Bay since 2012, and with Little Scholars since we took on that campus in 2016!

"I love how passionate everyone is about their role, and our Little Scholars family. I am inspired by all the other campus managers, and our HO team who will literally drop what they are doing to support you if you need them. This has a follow-on effect throughout the staffing team, which then flows on to our Deception Bay family and community. Little Scholars have helped each one of us grow and develop at Deception Bay, and we could not have achieved what we have today without their guidance, individual and full team development," she says.
"Knowing that I, and every single one of our team members have made a difference in the lives of everyone who has walked through our doors is what makes my role so rewarding. I am so lucky to have a team who are as passionate about caring for not only our Little Scholars and their families, but our whole community."

Campus Manager Ormeau

Samantha Dougherty

I am the Campus Manager at Little Scholars Ormeau Campus. My journey with Little Scholars began in August 2016 when the Redland Bay Campus first opened.

Samantha started as Lead Educator at Redland Bay campus and says she was supported tremendously to take on the positions of Assistant Campus Manager and Educational Leader. Her journey continued far and wide, where she fulfilled roles at the Stapylton Campus and Yatala campus as Assistant Campus Manager and Educational Leader.
"It was throughout these years where I was given endless opportunities for personal growth and professional development to get to the role I am in now. From mentors to learning and development days – there are many contributing factors that have helped me gain the knowledge to achieve all the things I have," Samantha says.

She believes early childhood education is an ever-growing evolution of knowledge and skills, which Little Scholars will always stand behind to assist in the growth of each educator.

"If I could describe my experience with Little Scholars in one sentence, it would be 'mama always said, life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get,' Every day is so crazily different, different challenges, different achievements – I would not have it any other way."

Campus Manager Stapylton

Riley Watene

My journey at Little Scholars began in 2016, where I began as an assistant educator and throughout my career I have worked as a Lead Educator, Educational Leader, Assistant Campus Manager and now the Campus Manager at Stapylton.

Riley's journey at Little Scholars began in 2016, where she began as an assistant educator, and throughout her career she has worked as a Lead Educator, Educational Leader, Assistant Campus Manager and now is the Campus Manager at Stapylton. She holds a diploma in Early Childhood as well as a Certificate III in Education Support.
"The support and praise from management really inspired me to better myself as an educator, and in 2017 I received the Rising Star Award out of the whole Little Scholars campuses, and from then I realised that my work was appreciated, and I had an amazing opportunity within the company. I would not be in the position I am today without the support from Little Scholars and the ongoing education and professional development.
If I could describe working at Little Scholars in a few words it would be inspiring, rewarding and fun. Being able to watch the children come in as babies and graduate off to school is incredibly rewarding and hearing the children yell out your name everyday truly makes your day."
Campus Manager Ormeau Village

Janice Lawerence

Administration Support

Monique Anderson

I've been in the childcare industry 2009, and I'm inspired every day working with an incredible team of professionals who strive for only the best outcomes for children and families.

Monique has been in the childcare industry for more than 10 years, starting as a nanny in New Zealand before doing her Certificate 3 in Early Childhood Education. Since then, she's worked in a variety of educator roles before joining Little Scholars in 2019.

"My role within Little Scholars is very rewarding as I get to support campus managers and families in many ways across all services," Monique says. "Little Scholars provides exceptional opportunities to expand and strengthen my knowledge and I am grateful to be a part of a company that supports and encourages you to grow, learn and be the best version of yourself.

Campus Support Officer

Claire Yates

I've been in the childcare industry 2009, and I'm inspired every day working with an incredible team of professionals who strive for only the best outcomes for children and families.

Claire has over 15 years’ experience in the Early Childhood sectors in both Australia and New Zealand. She holds a Bachelor of Education specialising in the Montessori Method and has worked at all levels from teacher to General Manager overseeing both Centre-based and home-based networks. Claire also sat on the board of Montessori Aotearoa New Zealand (MANZ) researching, reviewing and supporting quality practice on a national scale.

Your child’s journey to discovery starts here.

Together, let’s build the foundations for a lifetime of learning,
from our family to yours.

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