Gallery - HESTA Aged Care Awards

The HESTA Early Childhood Education & Care Awards recognise the front-line educators and carers at the very heart of Australia's early childhood education system.

2021 winners


A story worth celebrating

These awards celebrate educators and carers at the very heart of Australia’s early childhood education system.

Nominations now closed

2021 Awards presentation

Winners were announced via live broadcast, hosted by Jimmy Rees on Tuesday 7 September.

Read their stories


Winners share a $30,000 prize pool, courtesy of proud Awards supporter ME- the bank for you.

Terms and conditions

key dates

Nominations closed: 10 July 2022

Finalists announced: 6 September 2022

Winners announced: Friday 7 October 2022



2021 Award winners

We announced our winners on Tuesday 7 September 2021.

award categories

Advancing Pedagogy & Practice

This award recognises early childhood educators that have significantly advanced early childhood education and care through demonstrating innovation and enhanced outcomes for young children.

Eligibility criteria

Individual Leadership

This award recognises an individual who has delivered high quality education to young children in Australia, making a valued contribution to their profession.

Eligibility criteria

Outstanding Organisation

Recognises early childhood services that have implemented strategies to improve access and participation for children and families that may otherwise face barriers to accessing early childhood education.

Eligibility criteria


Every person or organisation nominated will receive a certificate in recognition of their contributions.

Terms and conditions


Finalists each receive two tickets to attend the Awards dinner.

Terms and conditions


Overall winners share a $30,000 prize pool, courtesy of proud Awards supporters ME- the bank for you.

Terms and conditions



2021 HESTA Early Childhood Education & Care Awards

The HESTA Early Childhood Education & Care winners and finalists epitomise outstanding standards of care and the highest levels of commitment to teaching and care-giving professions.

2021 winners

Advancing Pedagogy & Practice

Lilyfield Early Learning Centre were recognised for their community focused learning approach that empowers children to have a voice and choice, particularly through an innovative junior Parliament.

Read their story

Individual Leadership

Karen Roberts has been recognised for her outstanding contribution to early childhood education, continually going above and beyond to be a champion for children.

Read Karen's story

Advancing Pedagogy & Practice

Adamstown Community Early Learning and Preschool



Balnarring Preschool

Kinglake Ranges Children’s Centre

Outstanding Graduate

Stacey Cumming





Monique Covacci

Building Inclusion

Goodstart Early Learning Blue Haven




Shine Bright Echuca South Community Kindergarten

Learning Links

Advancing Pedagogy and Practice

Lady Gowrie Tasmania Integrated Child and Family Centre



Little Beacons, Beaconhills College

KU Mayfield Preschool Team

Wellbank Children's Centre

Outstanding Graduate 

Sharon Alexander


Building Inclusion

Mikarie Child Care Centre





KU Chatswood Community Preschool

Towri MACS

Learning Links Preschool

Sandcastles Early Education Centre

Outstanding Young Graduate 

Rachael Sydir

Hannah Goldspink


Excellence in Building Inclusion

The Infants' Home

Winyu Early Childhood Service Team



2021 Awards broadcast

Relive the excitement as we reveal the winners of the 2021 HESTA Early Childhood Education & Care Awards.

Watch as we announce the winner of the
2021 Individual Leadership Award

Watch as we announce the winner of the
2021 Advancing Pedagogy & Practice Award