Outstanding educational practitioners were recognised and celebrated at the Thurrock Education Awards.
The awards took place at the Civic Hall, Grays on Thursday 22 November. The awards ceremony praised and celebrated teachers, support staff, governors, trusts and headteachers across Thurrock’s schools, academies, colleges and settings.
Winners were announced across 14 award categories throughout the evening alongside speeches from Cllr James Halden, Portfolio Holder for Education, Andrew Bowen from DP World London Gateway and Chris Brookhouse from Greenergy. More than 220 nominations were received for the awards this year.
The evening was hosted by Hannah Mingay, former student of Gray’s Convent High School. Guests were entertained by Thurrock star Ruti Olajugbagbe who won ITV’s The Voice 2018 and is a former ORTU Gable Hall School student.
Outstanding early years practitioner Sponsored by ALM Training
Winner: Jade Humphreys, Willow Garden Day Nursery. Jade has an infectious enthusiasm for working with children and families. She creates motivating experiences and opportunities based on children’s individual interests. She completely embraces learning, empowering the children. She has a positive attitude, an obvious passion for early years and shows a genuine interest in every child.
Claire Holmes, Quince Tree Day Nursery
Leanne Knight, Scalliwags Pre School
Laura Weightman, Laura’s Little Lovelies Childcare
Outstanding new teacher Sponsored by Strategy Education
Winner: Georgia Keenan, Quarry Hill Academy. Georgia consistently demonstrates a willingness to improve her teaching. She has developed a safe and stimulating environment, always looking for new ideas to engage the children. Through her calm and organised teaching style she shows a love of teaching, which in turn develops high levels of enthusiasm in the children.
Emma Absolom, ORTU Gable Hall School
Adam Guilbert, Ormiston Park Academy
Anna Stoten, Arthur Bugler Primary School
Aspiring leader Sponsored by ALM Training
Winner: Charlotte Boileau, ORTU Gable Hall School. Charlotte always leads by example, instilling self-belief in children across the ability ranges. She has developed within her role as a middle leader, and now presents with skill and confidence at Continuing Professional Development (CPD) events. She is changing the culture of challenge within the entire school, showing qualities of leadership beyond her years, and an ability to lead and manage change that will undoubtedly make her a successful senior leader.
Helen Lavery, Tudor Court Primary School
Nella Murthen, Belmont Castle Academy
Laura Robinson, Headstart Day and After School Care
Innovative and creative teaching Sponsored by High House Production Park
Winner: Rhiannon Thomas, The Gateway Academy. Rhiannon is an advocate for creativity in school, and continuously shows her passion for creativity inspired learning. She pushes the boundaries and is keen to give students opportunities beyond the syllabus. She is taking creative practice beyond her own school, and this is having an impact on the teaching within neighbouring schools.
Karina Latham, ORTU Gable Hall School
Laura O’Donoghue, Grays Convent High School
Lauren Trunley, William Edwards School
Education support Sponsored by Print Warehouse
Winner: Kerry Girt, Warren Primary School. Kerry is an individual with boundless energy, transforming the school’s working environment through their artistic and sports endeavours. The sheer quality of her work in every area sets the standards for what others need to achieve, and the school has benefited because other people are trying harder as a result. Kerry is a real team player who has really helped develop a team ethos at the school.
Sue Maloney, Grays Convent High School
Aaron Mayo, Treetops School
Mel Williams, The Hathaway Academy
Excellence in English Sponsored by Palmers Solicitors
Winner: Samantha Levine, William Edwards School. Samantha has taken the role of teaching English to a new level. Not only does she deliver lessons of the highest quality to students across a range of abilities, but she has also made it her mission to ensure everyone in the school – students and staff – uses language correctly and with confidence. She makes learning accessible to all students, from those struggling with the basics to those working at the highest level. In addition, Samantha mentors trainees, developing new recruits in the English department, an essential legacy role.
English Team led by Rachel Nyland, Grays Convent High School
Emma Pattison, Dilkes Academy
Year 1 Teaching Team, Arthur Bugler
Primary School Excellence in Science, Technologies, Engineering and Maths (STEM) Sponsored by Greenergy
Winner: Jack Arnold, Abbots Hall Primary Academy. After comprehensive research, Jack developed a new and innovative approach to teaching maths in the school and, although risky, the change has had a profound effect on how maths is taught. Through modelling, coaching and training, he has overseen and led huge improvements in the teachers’ mathematical subject knowledge. The most significant effect has been on the teachers he has helped! Jack’s increased confidence in every lesson he teaches is immeasurable and will have the greatest impact moving forward.
Ash Hamilton, William Edwards School
Jade Lauricourt, Tudor Court Primary School
Tudor Court Digital Leaders, Tudor Court
Primary School Promoting career pathways and apprenticeships Sponsored by DPWorld London Gateway
Winner: Kate Merritt, ORTU Gable Hall School. Kate is dedicated to her job and works tirelessly to support young people into the world of work whatever their background or ability. She works with all school departments to embed careers into subject areas. Kate works closely with national and local businesses to promote career opportunities to all students, including those who are difficult to engage. She also works hard to engage with parents to promote career events and opportunities. As a result of her work, careers advice was reported as a ‘strong strength’ on the school’s latest Ofsted report.
Sam Bailey, Make Happen
Rachel Trigg, National Citizen Service
Peter Wiffen, HWWilson Ltd
Governing board, trust or member Sponsored by Kingston Smith
Winner: Harris Primary Academy Mayflower Governing Board. Harris Primary Academy Mayflower governing board has taken a bold and challenging approach to setting expectations, which have rapidly ensured improvements in the school. They are committed to undertaking regular visits to the school, often giving up their day off to focus on aspects of improvement. The board works closely with the school leadership team (SLT) to review the level of progress and to challenge the SLT regularly, ensuring the school continues to improve. Through their hard work, the school holds a Diversity Mark ‘Gold’ award and is working on becoming a centre of excellence.
Carianne Mailey, Arthur Bugler Primary School
Tim Moore, Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
Andrew Walker, Osborne Co-operative Academy Trust
Cross-school collaboration or community partnership Sponsored by Athene Communications
Winner: Amanda Bradley, Beacon Hill Academy. Amanda has developed exceptional relationship building skills, which she has used to gain buy-in from schools across the borough to take part in her unique inter-school inclusive arts project. The project encourages children from special needs and mainstreams schools to work together and learns ways to engage and develop their understanding of each other.
Harris Primary Academy
Mayflower Maria Stevens, Thurrock Teaching School Alliance
Teach Thurrock Primary Partnership
Teacher of the year in primary education Sponsored by HWWilson Ltd
Winner: Jade Lauricourt, Tudor Court Primary School. Jade is an exceptional teacher. Her continuous encouragement and jovial nature ensures the children always reach their full potential. She shows passion and creativity in delivering not only the curriculum subjects but sport and the arts. Jade is always looking at ways to improve her own teaching and engages in innovative approaches to inspire her children, ensuring standards are high across the school.
Amy Coe, Abbots Hall Primary Academy
Katherine Seamark, Arthur Bugler Primary School
Becky Wallace, Deneholm Primary School
Teacher of the year in secondary education Sponsored by HWWilson Ltd
Winner: Pantelis Iakovou, Harris Academy Chafford Hundred. Pantelis is a truly inspirational teacher whose enthusiasm and passion for his subject is clearly rubbing off on the children. He constantly seeks out new opportunities to bring his subject to life, organising trips to museums and universities. Pantelis has inspired his students by introducing them to professors and leading experts in their field. In a very short time, he has given the children a wealth of wonderful and varied experiences.
Matt Bowden, William Edwards School
Jenny Hill, The Gateway Academy
Tom Smith, Treetops School
School leader of the year Sponsored by Port of Tilbury
Winner: Louise Coates, Executive Head Teacher, East Tilbury Primary School. Louise is an exceptionally passionate and driven leader with a clear vision to raise expectations and academic achievement for pupils of the school. Under her leadership, the standard of educational attainment and step progress for individual pupils has dramatically improved. Her passion for inclusive education has become a key feature of the school. Louise is a motivational, inspiring and courageous leader who creates a stimulating and inclusive school environment. Staff, pupils, parents, carers and governors recognise Louise’s leadership qualities and share her vision.
Penny Johnson, Head Teacher, Grays Convent High School
Damian Loneragan, Deputy Head Teacher, St Clere’s School
Nella Murthen, Vice Principal, Belmont Castle Academy
Outstanding contribution to education in Thurrock Sponsored by Port of Tilbury
Winner: Denise Mansion, Little Thurrock Primary School.
Cllr Halden said, ‘The awards are a great way every year to recognise the outstanding work of our education superstars. I know I speak for everyone across Thurrock when I say how incredibly proud, we are of everyone who was shortlisted for and won an award. Once again, I would like to thank our many sponsors for supporting the Thurrock Education Awards and ensuring that Thurrock remains a shining beacon of hard work, dedication and striving for the best.’