Seven Liverpool schools honoured at Educate Awards

Career Aspiration Award winners St Margaret’s CE Academy with Lynn Willacy from award sponsor Air Products

SEVEN Liverpool schools were honoured at the prestigious Educate Awards ceremony on Friday (17 November).

Nearly 600 guests gathered for the Educate Awards ceremony held at the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral, hosted by broadcaster Simon ‘Rossie’ Ross.

The awards, in partnership with Copyrite Systems and Ricoh, is now in its sixth year and is the biggest celebration of education in the North West.

On the night, 21 awards were handed out to schools in the Liverpool City Region, Lancashire and Cheshire.

Winners of the Communication Award, Gateacre School has really raised its game when it comes to communication. Its new Headteacher reaches out to parents via his weekly Newsflash, the parent APP and emails and texts parents with web links to resources.

The school’s focus has not gone unnoticed, with one parent saying: “I’d just like to say thank you and all teachers for improving this school in terms of communication and innovation.”

Calderstones School won the Eco School Project of the Year for the introduction of its school wildflower meadow. Described as a ‘truly magical’ place, 45 pupils alongside the school groundsman and ecologist got involved to measure the area, sow the seeds and build giant bug and bee hotels!

Archbishop Blanch School won the Outstanding Arts in Secondary School award for its Beauty & the Beast Jr production. The whole school production was made up of Years 7 to 13 and led by Head of Performance Miss Melluish.

Feedback from judges said: “Archbishop Blanch really got the size, scale and success of this production right. It seems that it was a whole school effort, very professional and commercially successful…that’s an achievement.”

Alsop High School won the Community Partnership Award for devising a six-month programme of activities to foster community cohesion and highlight that “We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than the things that divide us.”

The initiative consisted of a series of events, talks, visits, workshops and social action projects including Justice Day; Faith Encounters; The Great Get Together and Archbishop of York Leaders Award.

Judges said: “Faith 2017 was outstanding. A robust six month programme in which the school was leading the community. Faith 2017 shows who Alsop is at its heart!”

St Margaret’s Academy won the Career Aspiration Award for its holistic approach to careers provision which incorporates talks, employee visits, fairs and work experience in to every stage of students’ development.

Judges loved the school’s approach and commented that Data and Careers Manager Greg McClean “seems to have a huge impact on the careers development.”

Ruth Partington, director of maths at The Academy of St Nicholas won the coveted Teacher of the Year award.

Described as “one of the most dedicated teachers and leaders you will meet”, Ruth is an outstanding teacher with a “wicked sense of humour” and most of all a belief that the best way to predict the future is to create it.

Judges said: “Mrs Partington has gone out of her way to assist those who have struggled with the subject to go on to achieve excellent grades. A tear-jerking entry from students and staff alike for this dedicated teacher keen to change lives.”

New Park Primary School’s Sara Mitchell scooped the School Support Star of the Year award. Starting at the school in 2000 as a Nursery Nurse, throughout her time she has demonstrated a commitment to working and assisting children and staff across the whole school.

Sara has been instrumental in organising events such as breakfast club, a whole school reward system, Christmas dinner and Year 6 Leavers Ball. Headteacher Karen Hutchings said: “Because of everything that Sara does, every single child feels like that they are her favourite.  It is true. Sara has 550 favourites! She has New Park Primary School running through her veins. Sara is AMAZING!”

Kim O’Brien, founder of the Educate Awards, says: “The Educate Awards is an opportunity to shine a spotlight on the teaching profession and say thank you to the remarkable individuals who improve the life chances of our children.

“We are proud to host this event which champions the creativity, diversity and dedication of teachers, school support stars, schools and colleges in the Liverpool City Region, Cheshire and Lancashire. Congratulations to all the winners, runners-up and shortlisted schools.”

The winners were chosen by a judging panel which included Michelle Dow, managing director of All About STEM; James Tartt, Merseyside track athlete and architect; Radio City breakfast host Leanne Campbell; Councillor Gary Millar, assistant mayor & mayoral lead for business & international trade; Chris Walker, regional managing editor of Trinity Mirror North West and North Wales; Lesley Martin-Wright, chief executive of Knowsley Chamber; Fiona Barnet, director of The Foundry Agency; Andrew Pimbley of Wirral’s Claremont Farm; Sue Cronin, head of teacher education at Liverpool Hope University and the education team at the respected Everyman and Playhouse Theatres.