The Tawa Team

This is our team of teachers and staff at Educare Tawa. Scroll through to find out more about our teaching team.

Anne-Marie Strickland

Centre Manager
Kia ora I’m Anne-Marie and I am the Centre Manager here at Educare Tawa.
I trained to become an Early Childhood Teacher in 2011 after 11 years of a corporate career.
I am a mother to our beautiful daughter Bella and she will be joining me here. Along with my partner Adam, our family enjoys boating, family get togethers, visiting parks and lots of dog walking.
My areas of special interest are high quality infant and toddler care and supporting our teachers to continually grow and develop their practice. I look forward to meeting you.

Elinor Blackler

Registered Teacher
My journey in Early Childhood Education began as a desire to be the best parent and first teacher to my two own children.
Over 20 years later, having gained both my primary and ECE degrees, I enjoy using my knowledge and skills to teach children.
I live locally with my husband and visit my gorgeous grandchildren in Tauranga as often as possible. I believe that children deserve loving, caring, passionate teachers who use any form of pedagogy to achieve the best possible results for children’s growth, development and learning.
I am very excited to be part of the Educare whānau and am looking forward to getting to know you and your family.

Jen Dahlberg

Registered Teacher
Kia ora! I’m Jen. I am a qualified early childhood teacher. I live in Whitby with my husband Jeff and our cat Tilly. I have specialised over the years in educating toddlers aged 18 months to 2 and a half years. I am very passionate about teaching this age group. I enjoy contributing to the intellectual, social, emotional and physical development of the children in my care. I am really excited to be working back in Tawa, being part of an awesome team and community. I can’t wait to get to know you all better!

Tessa Drowley

Provisionally Registered Teacher
Hello I’m Tessa, I currently live locally in Tawa with my daughter Madison. I have a Bachelors degree in Early Childhood Education and am currently working towards my full teachers registration. I have been working in ECE for 6 years and my passion is building relationships with the children and their families.
I also have a strong passion for giving children different ways to express themselves through music, dance and crafts. I am looking forward to building long lasting relationships and getting to know the children of Educare Tawa.

Vanessa Gilmour

Provisionally Registered Teacher
Kia ora, my name is Vanessa and I live locally here in Tawa. I am a qualified Early Childhood educator and have been in the industry for over 8 years.
I am very excited to be part of the team here at Educare Tawa and look forward to building strong relationships with tamariki and their whānau.
I have a passion for nuturing children’s emotional and social development and enjoy watching them grow into resilient, confident and competent individuals.
I look forward to getting to know you all.

Elanor Downes

Teacher in Training - Year 2
I’m Elanor, and I’m currently studying in the second year of my Bachelor of Teaching through New Zealand Tertiary College. I became passionate about teaching when I was 17 and started doing placements through my high schools Gateway programme. Before working with Educare, I worked in after school cares around Johnsonville, so I’m looking forward to now working with younger age groups.
I am really looking forward to getting to know the team and community here in Tawa.

Trish Gibson

Kia ora, I have been a resident of Tawa for the past eighteen years where I live with my partner and teenage daughter, and I also have 3 older children.
I have worked in Early Childhood for over fifteen years and love watching as our children develop their personalities and become more capable and confident as they grow. Seeing the look of excitement on children’s faces as they learn a new skill or discover something that interests them is a real pleasure.
I am looking forward to working closer to home and becoming part of the Educare Tawa family.

Michaela Cherrie

My name is Michaela Fiances Ebbett Cherrie.
I have been a nutritionist at daycare centres since 2006, and have worked in daycare centres in various roles since I was 20.
I am knowledgeable in food nutrition, food preparation, meal planning, dietary requirements and food handling. I also have all current food handling certificates.
I'm excited to start my new role at Educare Tawa and am here for any parent requests, so please feel free to come and have a chat with me. I am here to make sure your children receive a healthy balanced diet while here with us at Educare.

Suzanne Pyke

Hello I’m Suzanne and I am the administrator here at Educare Tawa. I am excited about being part of this new centre, helping it grow and welcoming you and your families to our Educare family.
I am a mother to two amazing boys and wife to a great husband.
I am lucky enough to be able to have my youngest son start here at Educare to watch him grow and develop.