Today (13 May 2018), nine inspirational teachers and education professionals have been revealed as winners of the second Professional Teaching Awards Cymru.
130 guests from all four corners of Wales, including 25 finalists, were invited to celebrate excellence in education in a special ceremony held at Hensol Castle. Welsh comedian Tudur Owen and Cabinet Secretary for Education, Kirsty Williams AM revealed the winners of the nine categories.
Lorraine Dalton from Ysgol Esgob Morgan, St Asaph was announced Teacher of the Year, nominated for her hard work and dedication to give pupils the best possible learning opportunities. Lorraine impressed the judges with her unwavering commitment, passion and the tremendous impact she has had on her school, where she started her teaching career 20 years ago.
“I’m so surprised, it’s a lovely feeling. It makes everything you do worthwhile. I kept saying when I was shortlisted that it is just a job, but thinking about it, it’s more than a job, it’s a way of life. Every teacher will agree that you never switch off, because you want to do the very best you can for the year the pupils are in your class. I can honestly say the children are at the heart of what I do and every member of the team at Ysgol Esgob Morgan makes pupils their priority. This is for them.”
Janet Waldron from Pontarddulais Comprehensive School was named Headteacher of the Year. Judges commented how she lives and breathes the life of her school and truly cares about every person in it, pushing staff to challenge themselves and encouraging pupils to realise their potential.
This award isn’t just for me, it is in recognition of the fantastic work carried out by pupils, staff and my amazing headship team. Being a head really is the best job and it’s something that anyone can do with commitment and a desire to make a difference.”
Winners in other categories included Jon Caple from Bishop Hedley High School, Merthyr Tydfil for School Business Manager/Bursar, Adam Griffiths from Penydre High School, Merthyr Tydfil for Supporting Teachers and Learners, Dylan Lewis, also from Pontarddulais Comprehensive School for Best Use of Digital.
Ruth Thackray, Senior Lead for Curriculum for Wales at GwE (School Effectiveness and Improvement Service for North Wales) took the title for Promoting Collaboration to Improve Learning Opportunities and Monkton Priory Community Primary School, Pembroke for Promoting Wellbeing, Inclusion and Relationships in the Community.
The ceremony also saw the first winners of new categories, with Helen Jones from Flint High School for Outstanding New Teacher and Gwenan Ellis Jones from Gwynedd Council Education Department for Inspirational Use of the Welsh Language.
Education Secretary Kirsty Williams said:
“The calibre of the finalists of our Professional Teaching Awards Cymru was outstanding and are a testament to the commitment, dedication and hard work of teachers and education professionals across the country, as such our judges faced a difficult task in choosing our winners.
“All nine of our winners go the extra mile and make a significant difference in their schools and most importantly to individuals. This year it has been fantastic to celebrate the next generation of teaching professionals already making an impact through our inaugural Outstanding New Teacher Award and showcase those aiding the use of our national language through the Inspirational Use of the Welsh Language award.
“Our education professionals are changing the lives of our future generations and helping us to raise standards and deliver an education system that is a source of national pride and confidence.”
The entire awards ceremony was live-streamed across the Facebook channel @EducationWales.
All nine winners were presented with bespoke, hand-crafted Griffiths Jones trophies.
To view the full list of finalists and winners, visit: www.gov.wales/teachingawards.
Join the conversation with #TeachingAwardsCymru and keen an eye on the Education Wales social channels @WG_Education/@EducationWales.
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