The History

Early Childhood on Stafford: Where passion pushes boundaries and children fly


A passion for early childhood education

Early Childhood on Stafford was established in September 2003 by Sue Ballantyne and Russell Ballantyne whom both were early childhood qualified teachers with a dream to provide a safe environment that allows children to build confidence and develop their personalities.

The cornerstone values of our early childhood education and care service are: Diversity Fun Passion Support

Everything we do is built upon these four things, and encompasses all aspects of Early Childhood on Stafford, from the curriculum and activities to the physical space we have created.

It also extends to the staff we choose; along with their ECE qualifications and experience, they all share the same passion for giving children their best possible start in following their own dreams and leading a fulfilling life.

Meet our team of early childhood education providers

Centrally located Dunedin learning environment with space to run, ride, hide & explore

Children standing on playground climbing nets

Suppose you are looking for a Dunedin Education and Care centre near the city centre. You’d be pleased to know that Early Childhood on Stafford is just a 5-minute drive (or 15-minute walk) from The Octagon! We are situated at 89 Stafford St, which is on the corner of both Stafford and Melville Streets.

The location is ideal for parents coming into the city from the south, from the peninsula, and the hill suburbs, as you can easily avoid the usual bottleneck areas during rush hour.

The Maunga(hill) we stand on is Pokohiwi and named after a Maori chief who lived on the top of the ridge well before before European Settlement. Our building is located half way up Pokohiwi and honours another Chief Te Rara who lived in this area pre European settlement. We name our building ( Te Whare o Te Rara) after him. Our building is part of the Dunedin Heritage Precinct area and was constructed in1920. This was the home of Henry Shacklock, the son of the founder of the Shacklock company which produced high-quality ranges and other whiteware.

We purchased this property for its central location and large three level playscape which is adorned with trees, bush, varying textures and space to run, hide and explore. We love how this brings some of the experiences and challenges that we as adults had in our own childhood into the urban learning environment, providing a setting that is “safe as necessary” as opposed to one that is “as safe as possible”.

Read More About Our Philosophy

We welcome parents and whanau to take a tour of our facilities and meet us when considering Dunedin daycare options.

Arrange A Tour Of Our Facilities