Our Committee

The Governance Committee here at Kopuwai would like to introduce ourselves to you and share a part of what we do. As many of you know we are a “community-based” “parent-run” “not for profit” childcare centre – the only one in Alexandra.  It goes without saying that we strive to provide excellent care and education for your under 5s – but what this point of difference also means is that we love to hear your input and appreciate all the help you can give us to provide a high-quality service at a reasonable price. As an incorporated society we have a constitution and a membership base which includes you, our families who automatically become members when your child attends our Centre.

The Governance Committee are ordinary, busy parents such as yourselves. We are responsible for ensuring all aspects of the running of the Centre including financial management, policies, planning, staff management and legislative requirements are met.  We meet monthly and the minutes of our meetings are available to you all. Being involved in the committee is a great way to feed into how the Centre is run whilst gaining a whole heap of skills and experience. 

Rachel Checketts


Hello, I’m Rachel Checketts and live here in Alexandra with my partner Hayden and our two children, Sophia and Will. Hayden and I both grew up in Alexandra so it made sense to return to raise our family here. From 2013-2016 I taught full time at Dunstan High and have since returned to teaching in a part-time role. Both Sophia and Will attend Kopuwai and love being part of such a vibrant, caring whanau. I am learning lots and relishing the role of President. It is great to be part of such a fantastic centre which really does have our young ones best interests at heart. Please feel free to contact me to discuss any ideas you might have for further developing the education of our little people.

Anna Ballantine

Vice President

Hi there! I'm Anna Ballantine, married to Tom and mum to Tilly. We are new to the Kopuwai whanau this year and I am excited to be more involved at a committee level. I am a primary school teacher at Alexandra Primary. I have holidayed in Central Otago since I was little and job opportunities for both Tom and I have brought us to Alexandra, where we have been ever since. With a passion for adventure and the outdoors, I feel so privileged to call Central Otago home and to be involved with such a well supported, passionately led centre. 

Georgie McLean


Hi I’m Georgie McLean, married to Craig and mum to Fergus  & Addison. We became part of the Kopuwai whānau in 2017. I am a Chartered Accountant with ICL, and I joined the Committee in 2018 as the newly elected Treasurer. As a born and bred Central Otago-ite, I enjoy all aspect of the outdoors. I am looking forward to continuing to be a part of the Kopuwai family and contributing to the Committee and the running of the Centre.

Jess Rodgers


Hi I’m Jess Rodgers, Mum to Aiden and wife to Dan. We joined the Kopuwai whanau earlier this year (2020). Dan and I grew up in Alexandra and couldn’t think of a better place to bring up our own family. I have a Bachelor of Education (0-8) and am currently casually relieving at several early childhood centres around Alex. I am passionate about quality care and education for our young Tamariki and I look forward to supporting the Kopuwai committee in the years to come. 

Rebecca Ireland

Committee Member

Sarah Philip

Committee Member

Hey everyone. I’m Sarah Philip, married to Simon and Mum to Fletcher and Theo who are both at Kopuwai, and love it! We’ve been part of the Kopuwai family since 2017, and I am happy to now be a part of the committee to help out where I can. I grew up on a farm in Omakau, and after living in Melbourne for around 8 years, chose to move back to NZ in 2015, and bought a home in Alexandra. I love the outdoors and everything that Central Otago has to offer. I am a graphic designer and work for myself from home which works really well with our young family. 

Hi I’m Rebecca Ireland, Mum to Archer and Hudson and married to Richard. We joined the Kopuwai whanau in 2018, and this year I decided after having both my boys here it was time to join the committee, as I am not a qualified teacher, I can hopefully bring a different perspective to the committee, although its certainly a learning curve! I am a licensed real estate salesperson and the Manager at Southern Wide Real Estate here in Alex. I was brought up in Alexandra and after being overseas for a few years ended up moving back and bringing up our family here. I love living the Central Otago lifestyle and try to get out in the outdoors as much as I can, but also love a good coffee at the café as well. My kids love it here at Kopuwai and as a Mum I love being part of such a caring, fun centre.   


Our AGM is generally held in March or April. We are always looking for new members, so if you’d like to join, please come along. We would love to see as many of you as possible to show your support. 

We would also really appreciate it if you could let us know any skills you may be able to share with us.

Feel free to contact any of us anytime to provide feedback or to find out more information.

If you are interested in contributing a little of your time or skills to help keep Kopuwai a great place for our kids, we'd love to hear from you anytime.

32 Marslin Street, Alexandra

  • Black Facebook Icon

© 2021 Kopuwai Early Learning Centre | All rights reserved