WHEN it comes to providing quality early childhood education and care, Stawell's Wendy Fox tops the class.
The Stawell family day care educator has been named Horsham and Grampians regional winner in the 2014 Excellence in Family Day Care Awards.
She is now in the running for the State and National Educator of the Year titles to be announced by Family Day Care Australia later this year.
Registered with Wimmera Uniting Care Family Day Care, Wendy is one of 25,000 family day care educators around the country providing quality early childhood education and care in a nurturing, home-based setting.
Family Day Care Australia's annual national awards program celebrates the important role family day care plays in the learning and development of more than 155,000 children around Australia.
This year the national peak body received more than 2000 nominations from families which reflects the many unique benefits of family day care and the positive impact the sector is having on children, families and the wider community.
Educators are judged on their professional approaches to early childhood education and care and Family Day Care Australia Chief Executive Officer Carla Northam said the awards acknowledged the high quality standards of some of the most outstanding family day care educators.
"The Excellence in Family Day Care Awards showcase the innovative practices of family day care educators like Wendy who are committed to delivering the best learning and development outcomes for the children in their care," Ms Northam said.
"To be named a regional winner demonstrates what a valued contribution the educator is making to the lives of our future generations through excellent programming and practices.
"It also shows that they hold very a special place in the hearts of the families who nominated them and this is a rare opportunity for these families to say thank you."
State winners will be announced next month with the national award winner to be revealed at the Visions for Leadership in Family Day Care Symposium in Adelaide on October 25.