Meet your presenters

STaR presenters are highly qualified in their field and experienced in early childhood education. They enjoy sharing their expertise so that educators can make immediate use of their new learning.

Megan Cooper

Megan has extensive experience teaching a wide range of children with additional needs and is passionate about special education. Her courses provide rich examples of issues that can arise and evidence-based strategies for early childhood educators to implement. She manages STaR’s Childcare Placement and Support Program, which trains and mentors childcare staff to successfully include young children with disabilities in inclusive settings.

“There is never a dull moment. I still get a thrill out of children reaching their individual objectives and the delight of their teachers and families when they do.”

Megan’s qualifications:

  • Bachelor of Science, Macquarie University
  • Bachelor of Teaching-Primary, University of New England
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Early Intervention, Macquarie University
  • Master of Special Education, Macquarie University

See Megan’s special education courses for early childhood educators.

Professional affiliation:

Australian Association of Special Education, NSW Chapter (Committee Member)

Dr Kerry Hodge

Kerry has taught many young children who are gifted (or might be) in early childhood settings and supported their parents. She also was awarded a Churchill Fellowship in 2009 to investigate overseas programs for gifted preschoolers. These experiences, combined with her research focused on the identification and education of young gifted children, ensure that her courses on giftedness for early childhood educators are both evidence-based and practical.

“Gifted children are complex, but strategies that help them to thrive can enrich the program for everyone, teachers included.”

Kerry’s qualifications:

  • Bachelor of Education (Pre-primary), University of Sydney
  • PhD (Special Education), Macquarie University

See Kerry’s courses on giftedness for early childhood educators.

Professional affiliations:

  • Early Childhood Australia
  • Australian Association for the Education of the Gifted and Talented
  • Gifted Families Support Group (NSW)
  • Australian Research Alliance for Youth and Children
  • World Council for Gifted and Talented Children
  • Adjunct Fellow, Macquarie University

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The STaR Association receives funding from the Australian Government Department of Social Services (DSS) and the NSW Department of Education


We are in partnership with Macquarie University

Thank you to our Sponsors and Partners

  • MonSTaR Foundation
  • Australian Stock Brokers Foundation
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  • Gilbert Tobin
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