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Oxford-based preschool, Bright Horizons, are celebrating this week having recently been awarded the top Enviroshools status of Green/Gold.
“We are delighted” says director Justin Fletcher, “We are the only preschool in the Waimak with this status, and one of only four in Canterbury. It’s a big deal”.
The preschool has always had a strong focus on sustainability and they also built the first plastic bottle tunnel house in the Southern Hemisphere. It’s clearly an approach that appeals to parents and children as they have been growing steadily and currently have a waiting list for new entrants.
The purpose-built preschool opened in February 2010 and at the time was licensed for 25 children. As a result of the growth in roll in May this year the licence was increased to a capacity of 29 children, also following parent requests the centre has changed its enrolment age to take children aged 2 to 6. The new spaces have already been taken up and the demand on the roll continues.
“Word of mouth has been great for us, we have built a great reputation in the local community, we know that children who attend the centre thrive when they transition to the local schools” says Fletcher, “We have an open plan, quiet environment with a professional teaching team and a certain philosophy around the natural environment. We are a boutique child-focused centre and it appeals to people”.
Fletcher says that the new enrolments, which have seen a noticeable spike since April of this year, are a combination of new arrivals from out of district and overseas. “It feels like there have been quite a few new families move to the Oxford area recently, there’s a bit of a buzz. The new children enrolled have come with their families from Christchurch and others from as far afield as the UK”.