A Portlaoise childcare business has achieved a quality mark signifying it meets the highest standards of service and trust.
Sonya Duggan - Kilminchy School House was awarded the coveted Business All-Star Thought Leader in Early Childhood Education accreditation.
This is an independently verified standard mark for indigenous businesses, based on rigorous selection criteria.
The accreditation is overseen by the prestigious All-Ireland Business Foundation, whose adjudication panel is chaired by Dr Briga Hynes of the Kemmy Business School at the University of Limerick and Kieran Ring, CEO of the Global Institute of Logistics.
Mr Ring congratulated Ms Duggan on her award.
"The accreditation board at the All Ireland Business Foundation is pleased to confirm the designation of Sonya Duggan founder of Kilminchy School House with its Thought Leader accreditation in recognition of her outstanding contribution to early childhood education.
"In a career spanning three decades, Sonya Duggan has carefully honed a distinct world view of the role of education in early childhood development, a world view which traces its roots back to the Middle East where she spent almost 10 years of her early career working in the education sector.
"The accreditation board was particularly impressed with the range of curriculums from which Sonya has developed her own unique syllabus, sources such as Reggio, Steiner & Forest School to name a few. Holistic is the keyword in understanding Sonya's approach which when combined with her own unique personality add up to a deserving recipient of her designation as Business All-Star Thought Leader," he said.
Dr Hynes said the accreditation, which is now held by over 350 firms, is needed by the thousands of small and medium businesses which operate to their own standards but have nothing to measure them by.
“We evaluate a company’s background, trustworthiness and performance, and we speak to customers, employees and vendors,” she said.
“We also anonymously approach the company as a customer and report back on the experience.
“The business goes through at least two or three interviews, a submission and is scored on every part of the process against set metrics,” she said.
Responding to her success Ms Duggan said she is delighted to receive Business All-Star Accreditation.
"We were very busy over the summer working with the All-Ireland Business Foundation to achieve our Business All-StarAccreditation Certificate. This accreditation is an outstanding achievement and recognises the hard work and dedication of our team in providing a best in class service to all our families.
"Thanks to our wonderful families for endorsing us and for all your support and to my colleagues for their continued passion, dedication and love in what they do. Business All-Star accredited companies are defined as; progressive, indigenous Irish businesses which meet the highest standards of verified performance, trust and customer-centricity.
"In achieving this accreditation, we join a unique group of businesses and we believe this continues to demonstrate our commitment to improving our service," she said in a statement.
The All-Ireland Business Foundation is responsible for overseeing the All-Ireland Business Summit and All-Star awards, ongoing All-Star accreditation, Thought Leader awards and promoting peer dialogue among members.