Name of Recipient:
Ms. Jessie Chua
The early years of children’s lives are crucial; children tend to be impressionable, and develop their own views of the world around them. They discover new skills, cultivate their creativity, unleash their fullest potentials, and are moulded into talented and capable individuals, all which would not be possible without a quality education. The Eureka SchoolHouse provides just that – a stable foundation for a child’s future.
Founded in 2003 by Ms. Jessie Chua, Eureka SchoolHouse is not only a kindergarten which offers a holistic education for the children enrolled, it is also a childcare centre which provides care for their young students, providing much ease and convenience for the many working parents of today. Eureka SchoolHouse focuses on imparting knowledge from a wide variety of subjects to the students, which includes, but is not limited to: English and Chinese languages, Music and Movement, Discovery Science, History, and Pretend Play Dramatisation. With such a range of things to learn, this encourages the young students to explore and discover their own talents and interests, developing skills like teamwork and creativity when working in groups.
Jessie’s inspiration to set up the SchoolHouse stemmed from her love of children. She wanted to be able to make a difference in their lives, and decided to leave the corporate world to start the business. She also wanted to bring convenience to families, especially the ones who have both parents working and with no caretaker for the children.
There is also the common misconception that the children in childcare are not well-taken care of, and that parents just leave them there for the sake of convenience. Jessie has strived to change this ‘negative’ image of childcare services, and has shown that childcare centres, in addition to providing childcare, are able to offer a well-rounded education to children.
When it came to naming the company, ‘Eureka’ is Greek for ‘I made it’. For the logo, it is comprised of building blocks. “You must have a strong foundation at a young age,” Jessie elaborated. “It must be built from young.” That foundation is like bricks during a building of a house.
Back in 2003, Eureka SchoolHouse was a brand new business, and Jessie found it to be a challenge to start the entire enterprise from scratch. Being new, many parents were worried that Eureka SchoolHouse would not last long enough for their children to finish schooling there. Jessie also had to persevere to bring in enrolment through encouraging parents to enrol their children to study at the SchoolHouse. In addition, Jessie felt a lack of confidence initially, and was unsure if the business would take off, but through time and the expansion of the SchoolHouse, she managed to build it up.
Through word-of-mouth referrals and recommendations by friends and family, the intake of children by Eureka SchoolHouse increased rapidly, and today, after ten years of operation, Eureka SchoolHouse is at full capacity, and has received positive feedback from many satisfied parents.
Apart from this, in the childcare service industry, staff turnover rates tend to be high. However, Jessie is proud to proclaim that the SchoolHouse has low turnover rates, with long-serving staff members. “When you’re doing business, you need to have the ‘human touch’ with your staff,” Jessie explained. “When they’re happy, they can keep the children happy.”
One satisfying aspect of being in the childcare industry is being able to see an initially scared and apprehensive child eventually settle in, and become comfortable. Another rewarding aspect is watching them grow and develop through the years. Jessie mentioned children who enrol as young as 18 months, and stay all the way through to their 6th birthday. “You see the children growing with you,” Jessie said. “You watch them grow up, and see them embark on the next leg of their journeys.”
As every child learns differently, more attention has to be given to each child; Jessie, who firmly believes on managing the business on her own terms, makes sure that the teacher-student ratio in the SchoolHouse be low, and is nothing more than 1:8. The extra attention allows more personalised teaching, letting students learn and absorb more efficiently. This is what sets Eureka SchoolHouse apart from its competitors, and shows what a visionary Jessie is.
Jessie is mostly self-motivated, but some of that encouragement comes from her ex-boss. He has given her a lot of advice and encouragement, without which, she would not be where she is today.
To Jessie, entrepreneurship means perseverance and tolerance. She also believes that one must have patience and confidence to succeed. “You must also have passion in everything you want to do,” she added on. “When you do it full-heartedly, you can succeed. Don’t give up halfway.” She also has advice for young people wanting to start their own businesses. “It took a while for me to succeed. Don’t give up too easily, and make sure you deliver your promises.”
Jessie plans to continue looking for more suitable locations for Eureka SchoolHouse, but it will be a challenge to do so, as there are many requirements to fulfil. Jessie is also entertaining the idea of franchising the business sometime in future. With such a motivating and devoted director, Eureka SchoolHouse is sure to continue flourishing in the childcare services industry in the years to come.
2 Sunbird Road S(487127)
T| 6542 2561
F| 6542 2712