STUDENTS at a school have voted for a volunteer who assists with their reading skills to receive the Unsung Hero award.
Year 6 pupils at St John’s Cathedral Catholic School, on Cottage View, Landport, voted for Ray Hallin to receive the prestigious award.
He visited the Lord Mayor’s parlour to pick up the award which shows the positive impact he has had on other people’s lives and how much the students appreciate him.
The ceremony, which took place at Portsmouth Guildhall, gave Ray the chance to spend time with the students in a relaxed atmosphere rather than a classroom.
After receiving the award Ray said he was very moved by the fact that the children went through the hard work to vote for him. This included multiple letters written explaining why he deserved it.
Ray said: ‘I believe that with all this technology in the world today, social skills are lacking and technical skills have taken over.
‘The best time to change this is during primary school and it could influence the children and encourage them with ideas for the future.’
Ray has been working at St John’s Cathedral Catholic School since 2000 when his granddaughter started at the school.
At this point it was suggested that he helped out students with their reading.
When he applied for this position, the headteacher Catherine Hobbs suggested he work with Year 6 pupils to aid them with their literacy.
Ray would talk and listen to students and hear them read to him, in which he would help them to develop their personal skills.
He added: ‘We focus on specific area’s such as fluency which is being able to move word to word, sentence to sentence, paragraph to paragraph smoothly.
‘We also look at their expression, how they present their feelings and feelings of characters in what they read and comprehension so how they understand what they have read and how to interpret it in life.’