Top Portsmouth teachers, leaders and learning assistants recognised at awards

Top teachers, learning assistants and school leaders have been honoured in an awards ceremony for their hard work.

Sunday, 11th July 2021, 2:51 pm
Cllr Suzy Horton

Teach Portsmouth Awards Live recognised the tough year felt across education in the city following repeated closures due to Covid-19.

Sudden switches to home learning and online teaching may have caused stress in schools and homes - but hardworking experts in education ensured pupils prospered.

Teachers have been calling youngsters at home to ensure they’re well, brought in technology at breakneck speed and delivered food parcels to those in need.

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The awards on Thursday showcased the very best Portsmouth has to offer - and held up those who will inspire future generations.

Councillor Suzy Horton, education cabinet member at Portsmouth City Council, was bowled over by all involved.

She said: ‘It's fantastic to see so many colleagues being recognised for their immense efforts during the pandemic.

‘While there isn't a specific category for Covid-19, each nominee featured in the shortlist went above and beyond to support their community during this time.

‘While the winners deserve praise and recognition, it's important to realise that everyone who works in schools and colleges in Portsmouth all deserve a collective round of applause. You are all superstars.’

Prior to the virtual event, entries were reviewed by a shortlisting panel.

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The people's choice award - sponsored by The News - was the only category to allow residents to nominate someone who had gone above and beyond the call of duty during the pandemic.

This category was judged on the amount of entries per nominee to work out a winner.

Hosted by broadcaster Reverend Richard Coles the night itself was a roaring success.

Some 90 teachers received long service awards for 20 years of dedication to the city. There is no overall winner in this category and everyone receives an award.

Those who have won awards work in all areas of school and college life.

From learning support assistants to head teachers, the awards celebrate everyone's successes.

Roberta Kirby, headteacher at Fernhurst Junior School won the outstanding contribution award.

She said: ‘I was thrilled to have been nominated for the outstanding contribution award.

‘However, when Councillor Suzy Horton burst through the door with a trophy I was absolutely stunned.

‘What's important to remember is that the trophy isn't just for me but recognition of the whole team who have gone above and beyond to support everyone during the pandemic.’

The council is running the awards to make sure those working in the city feel recognised.

Mike Stoneman, deputy director for children, families and education at the council, said: ‘The Teach Portsmouth Awards is always a firm favourite in the city's event calendar as we celebrate our hard working teams.

‘With the pandemic, it's more important than ever before to recognise their incredible efforts and the role teachers, learning support assistants and head teachers play in our communities.’

Ashley Howard at Highbury Primary School won the people’s choice award.

Mark Waldron, editor of The News, said: 'At The News we've been absolutely blown away by the response we've had from the local community for the people's choice award.

'We've been involved with Teach Portsmouth since its creation because we think it's vital that we continue to celebrate the profession in our wonderful city.

'The people's choice award was actually introduced in response to the pandemic and a way to recognise how teachers have supported communities during a very difficult time, as nominated by local residents.'

The winners are:

Innovation in teaching award (Sponsored by Portsmouth College)

Ben Currier - combined subject leader for international languages at Mayfield School

Creativity award - (Sponsored by Thinking Schools Academy Trust)

Year 1 team at Bramble Infant School and Nursery

Unsung hero award (Sponsored by Express FM)

Rebecca Britti - curriculum lead for languages at Admiral Lord Nelson School

Inclusion and diversity award (Sponsored by Caterlink)

Emma Darbyshire - PSCHE teacher at Flying Bull Academy

Communication and collaboration award (Sponsored by Kier)

Layla Gover - higher level teaching assistant ta Milton Park Primary School

Partnership award (Sponsored by University of Portsmouth)

Bridging Portsmouth’s Digital Divide team (Portsmouth City Council/ Shaping Portsmouth/The Hive/Thinking Schools Academy Trust)

Outstanding contribution award (Sponsored by BAE Systems)

Roberta Kirby - headteacher at Fernhurst Junior School

People’s choice award (Sponsored by The News)

Ashley Howard - headteacher at Highbury Primary School

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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