‘Best’ to close child care centre

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ABC Gore child-care centre closed its doors on Friday.

Numbers attending the centre had dwindled to about 14 children and it had the capacity to take 39, BestStart Educare deputy chief executive Fiona Hughes said.

“Gore was an area that was really well serviced,” Mrs Hughes said.

It was evident there were a lot of child-care options in the area.

“We thought it was the best option to close.”

The centre had four staff when it closed: two qualified teachers and two caregivers, Mrs Hughes said.

“One of the qualified staff has taken up another position with us in Invercargill.”

The company had advised other child care centres in the area the remaining three staff were looking for positions.

BestStart bought the ABC Group nearly six years ago, Mrs Hughes said.

BestStart had a focus on providing early childhood care in areas where there were a lack of options.

“We want all children to have access to early childhood education.”

Tori Tremaine, of Mandeville, sent her three sons to ABC in Gore.

The youngest, Leigh (15 months), was still attending ABC when it closed on Friday, Mrs Tremaine said.

Leigh was now on the waiting list at another centre in Gore, she said.

She had been very happy with the quality of care provided by ABC.

“We loved it. It felt like they were family, really,” Mrs Tremaine said.

“The teachers were lovely.”

She was advised a “couple” of weeks ago BestStart was looking at closing the centre because of falling numbers.

“They had been falling for a wee while.”