The ECU SRG’s members provide expert advice to the ECU about the operation and context of education and care and child care services across Tasmania on matters that are affecting educators, services, and communities in Tasmania. This also includes providing advice and feedback on how to support outcomes for children through early and middle childhood.  Members assist in identifying issues and opportunities that have the potential to affect the sector or outcomes for children.

The ECU and ECU SRG members work collaboratively with the purpose of achieving positive outcomes for children.

Organisation Members

The ECU has invited a number of organisations to be members of the ECU SRG.  Current organisational members are:

Early Childhood Australia (Tasmania Branch)

Annette Barwick

Annette BarwickAnnette has worked in the education and care sector for over 28 years, having worked in a variety of early and middle childhood settings and positions before moving into senior strategic and operational, training and management roles with Lady Gowrie Tasmania for over 15 years.
Annette has been an executive committee member of the Early Childhood Australia Tasmania Branch in excess of 14 years. Annette regards her connection with the sector as a privilege and has the greatest respect for the role educator’s play in the lives of young children and their families. This drives and inspires her to continue to advocate for the importance of the early years and the value of ongoing professional learning.

Australian Childcare Alliance (Tasmania Branch) 

Mel Reid-Prewer

Mel is the owner and the Service Manager of Glen Dhu Children’s Services and represents the Australian Childcare Alliance (ACA) which is a not-for-profit, member-funded organisation advocating for the future of Australia’s children.

Family Day Care Council of Tasmania 

Angela Stanley-Gasparin

Biography to follow.

Department of Education Tasmania


Catholic Education Tasmania

Kate Turner

After completing her Associate Diploma in Child Care in 1992, Kate opened a dance school, but parent help duties fanned the early years flame, leading to a Bachelor of Education at Griffith University.

After working first for the Education Department in Queensland, Kate accepted a position at The Hutchins School where she worked as a Prep and Kindergarten teacher.  However, kindergarten soon became her passion.

In 2017, Kate commenced as an Education Officer, Early Years, for Catholic Education Tasmania, and in 2020 accepted a secondment into a new role, Advisor Early Years (Statewide), with Catholic Education Tasmania.

Independent Schools Tasmania 

Mark Seagar

Mark graduated from the University of Tasmania with a Bachelor of Teaching Degree (ECE Specialisation) in 1999.  Commencing his career as a classroom teaching at St. Michael’s Collegiate School, Mark then spent 19 years working as the Director of Education and Care Services at Pixie Child Care Centres / Scared Heart College (2001 – 2004) and Friends Early Years / The Friends School (2004 – 2019).

Mark was a member of the Executive Committee of Early Childhood Australia (Tasmania Branch) from 2010 – 2012 and a member of the Minister’s Child Care Advisory Council from 2010 – 2012.

Mark commenced his current role as Early Years Education Consultant for Independent Schools Tasmania in January 2020.

Early Childhood Educators of Tasmania 

Sandra Mazengarb

Sandra is the Director of Early Years Learning at St Virgil’s College and represents the Early Childhood Educators of Tasmania.

United Workers Union

Gwen Alcock

Biography to follow.

Individual Members

The ECU has identified several community or sector cohorts where individuals are able to provide advice and input into ECU SRG discussions based on their individual expertise and lived experience.  Members from the following cohorts are appointed through an expression of interest process conducted by the ECU:

Parent / Family


Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community

Helen Ransom

Biography to follow.

Out-of-scope (licensed) services 

Lyn Long

Lyn LongAs a teacher, Lyn became involved with the education and care sector in 1987 when she served as a member of the Board of Management at St David’s Child Care Centre. Lyn has worked for over 29 years as the coordinator at Possums Playcentre in Taroona. She used the experience gained in the early childhood sector to qualify as a coach and assessor in the Children’s Services Recognition Program.

Lyn has been privileged to provide play-based learning experiences to pre-school children and work with dedicated and caring educators and supportive parents.

Possum’s program is based on the Early Year’s Learning Framework and although her centre is an out – of – scope service, they are informed about the NQF through seminars and ECU information. Lyn has found it rewarding to be part of the positive changes and developments in the education and care sector and values the importance placed on early years learning.

Outside School Hours Care (OSHC) sector


Long Day Care Sector


Local Government Provider

Kate Whitbread

Kate WhitbreadKate is currently the Child Care Delivery Coordinator at Glenorchy City Council’s Child Care Connections Services Benjafield and Berriedale Child Care Centres. Kate has worked in the education and care sector for 26 years and has experience in all areas including long day care, outside school hours care (OSHC) and family day care (FDC). Kate began her education and care career as a junior employee and then commenced studying the Associate Diploma in Child Care part time whilst continuing to work. Kate has continued studying throughout her career and has most recently completed a Diploma in Leadership and Management.

Kate worked as a Validator for the National Child Care Accreditation Council (NCAC) when Accreditation of services commenced and quality assurance in Australia was first raised as a political issue. Kate has also worked for the Education and Care Unit in the area of Assessment and Rating.