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Heather Moorhead AM

28/12/1929 - 23/10/2019

Director of the Free Kindergarten Union 1971 - 1989

In 1971 Heather Moorhead began a long and productive career as Director of Preschool Activities guiding the Victorian Free Kindergarten Union through almost two decades of challenging times, but Heathers relationship with us started well before that time. Most significantly in the early 1970s, Heather returned to Melbourne after an overseas study tour of international teacher training colleges with a proposal for the FKU to establish a Kindergarten teaching centre at Boorondara Kindergarten.

As a result of Heathers advocacy, the first Australian Kindergarten Teachers Centre was established. The centre offered teachers after hours’ practical skills sessions and discussion groups led by the FKU to support teachers working with young children. In 1971, FKU now under Heathers leadership relocated its professional library and teachers’ resources to Boorondara for use in conjunction with the flourishing Kindergarten Teachers Centre.

In 1982, in recognition of Heathers passionate advocacy for early childhood education and the support of the sector, she was appointed to the Governing Council of the new Melbourne College of Advanced Education – Institute of Early Childhood Development (IECD).

The late 1980s and early 1990s was one of the most difficult periods in the long history of FKU/fka. Social and political developments heavily affected its work and tough economic times impacted on small not for profit organisations working for social change. It is a tribute to the leadership of Heather that fka was able to continue to support Kindergartens and lead innovation in these tough times.

The retirement of Heather Moorhead after 18 years as Director was deeply felt. Her term of office spanned many difficult years and as Betty Sommerville, the then President of FKU commented at the time: "one wonders how she has been able to meet the endless demands made upon her and still retain the ability to tackle with a clear and probing mind the various philosophical problems which have inevitably accompanied the work."

Vale Heather Moorhead AM
28/12/1929 - 23/10/2019

Date published: 8.11.2019

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