About Us


Our Preschool and Nursery

Waratah Preschool and Nursery has provided quality early childhood education and care to children and their families in the Berowra area for over thirty years. Sa Chen and Hui Zhao became the  centre owners in September  2009, and have successfully built a strong foundations to offer a nurturing and educational environment for children in their care.

Our centre is a fifty-six place long day care and preschool centre for children aged 0 to 6 years. 


We open from 7.30am to 6pm Monday to Friday. We also offer a short day for the preschooler room from 8.30am to 3.30pm to offer flexible hours to meet families' needs.


Structured programs are provided for children in three age groups and rooms:

  • 8 infants  (Bottlebrush Room) 0 to 2 years

  • 15 toddlers (Wattle Room)  2 to 3 years

  • 30 preschoolers (Waratah Room) 3 to 6 years.

Our Philosophy


At Waratah Preschool & Nursery we believe that every child is special and unique. We see children as capable, competent individuals who come to Waratah with their own interests, talents, skills and ideas. As educators we advocate for children. We feel children have a right to be active participants in their own learning and must be empowered to express their views and ideas, giving them a voice through our use of daily reflection and being involved in decision making. We build upon self-image, independence, and confidence in each child's by fostering a positive approach to their identity with a sense of responsibility and self-esteem. We believe that valuing each person for who they are, regardless of their culture, lifestyle, language, ability or gender enables them to feel welcome and respected.

Children’s health, security and wellbeing underpin all learning experiences. We aim to create an environment that is welcoming, comfortable and stable, yet changes to meet the needs and interest of the children. We believe that the environment is the “Third Educator”, that acts to teach children in a manner that inspires engagement, creative exploration and nurtures concentration. This belief has guided our choice of resources and physical elements in conjunction with the needs of the children.

We believe that introducing natural elements and embedding sustainable practices in our environment encourages children to build a strong connection and understanding of nature’s importance and why we need to protect it. Our educators involve children in repurposing materials to support these values.

We strive to be seen as an active participant within our local area of Berowra, valuing community involvement and connection. We aim to create authentic relationships between staff, children, families and community groups through utilising community resources effectively to enhance the growth and development of all individuals.

We respect the indigenous custodians of our local area (the Darug and  Guringai peoples) and Australia wide,  connecting with the local community by acknowledging their heritage and traditions through incorporating indigenous resources and our personalised acknowledgement of country.

Here at Waratah Preschool and Nursery we show a commitment to ‘Belonging, being and becoming”, the Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) for Australia as well as the National Quality Framework (NQF) and the National Quality Standards. These frameworks guide the policies and decisions made at the centre on a daily basis.

Children learn through their PLAY interests and meaningful interactions. We feel that a meaning full, integrated, emergent curriculum using the EYLF as the framework is the most beneficial to children’s learning across all developmental domains. We aim to provide an enriching, meaningful and realistic program full of opportunities for children to explore, create, discover and imagine where children are active participants in their own learning and development. We  view school readiness as developing positive dispositions and love of learning. We embed our school readiness program across all rooms in our centre, helping to form the foundations for skills that will lead to future success. 

We believe families play the most important role in their child’s early learning and development and strongly value and respect the insight and traditions that each family brings. We aim to ensure families are involved in all aspects of the programs' development and implementation, this encourages an enriched and expansive professional picture of their child through incorporating perspectives. We strive to develop positive relationships with each family member that are built on trust, mutual respect and understanding.

We value our high-quality team of Educators who aim to provide the best care for our children.

Our centre's management believe that on-going education and professional development enables our educators to feel valued and provide a program that inspires through many theories, approaches and ideas. 

We appreciate their dedication as an integral element of the success of our service, recognising our educators as a precious resource. We aim to provide them with a satisfying and safe environment full of trust and respect, where we work towards achieving a shared goal of quality care.

Sa Chen & Hui Zhao, Centre Owners

Sa Chen and husband Hui Zhao are passionate ambassadors for early childhood education and care. Sa oversees all aspects of the day to day running of Waratah Preschool & Nursery and its sister centre, Asquith Ealry learning Centre.

Sa Chen is an early childhood teacher who has managed the centre since 2009. Sheis a qualified teacher for Australia, New Zealand and China. Over the past ten years Sa has successfully managed both Waratah Preschool and Asquith Early Learning Centre. 

Sa understands the time pressures and flexibility needs of all parents and carers of small children, ensuring the centre provides the best possible care and nurturing to support the unique needs of your child.

Keeping up with small children needs energy and dedication. Waratah Preschool and Nursery has a large number of long term permanent staff to manage the needs of each age group.

Staffing the preschool and nursery so that more experienced educators work with those newer to childcare is a mark of our quality approach, ensuring that knowledge and experience is shared across the team. 

Educator to child ratios are always higher than legally required. Having more staff available than the minimum government requirement not only facilitates mentoring and learning, it also helps to keep energy levels high throughout the day.

Every day at Waratah Preschool and Nursery is structured, and follows a seasonal routine (winter / summer). Often activities for the day are themed around the childrens' or their families' interests. We welcome parental and carer involvement in the development of our program.

To find out more, contact us to arrange a visit to the centre, or refer to the Parent Handbook. 


We have chosen Waratah Preschool because they offered us shorter hours that fit in with 'big school' hours and we were able to get the days we needed. Although we are a new family to the Waratah community, we have used the centre before in 2009. When I first met Sa in 2009 she chatted to me with an upset child in her arms and was so calming and reassuring to both me, a new parent to the centre, and the child she held. Her staffing choices are excellent. Today Roxc is a brilliant communicator via email and in person. I feel constantly reassured that my child is having a good settling in period. The centre is small and has a lovely family atmosphere. My child is being well looked after and I would highly recommend Waratah Preschool.

 Emma, 2018

Waratah is a warm and loving community. The carers work with parents and children to ensure that the childcare experience is enjoyable and fun for all! I have seen two kids through Waratah and everyone just feels like part of the family. My eldest is still mates with his Waratah buddies even now his in big school! Lovely staff, lovely space, play area and a warm welcoming community. 

We love Waratah!!

Monica, 2018

Waratah Preschool is the best! Nothing makes me happier as a mother than knowing my kids are well looked after and having fun right from the moment they walk through the doors. The centre is well run and organised and all the staff are wonderful, caring and much loved by all the kids. Waratah gives me guilt free care for my children, knowing that my kids are stimulated and engaged in a caring environment while I have to either work or take some much needed time out gives me confidence to enjoy my day.

Micaela, 2019

Waratah Preschool always goes above and beyond with their caring, fun, clean, safe and nurturing environment. The staff are amazing and my daughter is always happy to go to preschool. They continue to provide a range of daily activities for the children to choose from, to cater for all their different needs and interests. They always run a range of different learning programs throughout the year, which always sparks the children's curiosity and excitement at the centre. The staff are always happy to take time out to tell me about my daughter's day, they're always friendly and welcoming.

I would highly recommend Waratah Preschool!!

 Elaine, 2019

Very harmonious and please of a pre-school. Staff are Magnificent.
I recommend this to anyone that is looking for a pre school that can be trusted and relied on.
Highly recommend it. Thank you Roxc, Sophie, Karen and Sa!
You guys have helped my family so much with your care and professionalism with both of our children throughout the years. You guys rule. Good luck!

Rob 2020

My daughter loved her time at Waratah Preschool - the staff are all lovely and the preschool teachers are amazing, highly recommend to other families!

Claire 2020