“The impact of this has been phenomenal”

Charlotte Grace
Silver Winner, the Award for Outstanding New Teacher of the Year, 2018
Outwood Academy Shafton

I am still absolutely overwhelmed by being a 2018 Silver Winner in the Pearson Teaching Awards, one year on from the experience! The impact of this has been phenomenal; it has raised the profile of STEM and has also encouraged me to continue to try and innovate wherever possible within my day-to-day teaching.

One of the greatest memories of winning the Award was the presentation that Outwood Academy Shafton organised as part of ‘Thank a Teacher’ Day. This was very emotional as one of my students presented me with the award! Visiting Parliament with my colleague and friend was also an amazing opportunity, to meet with likeminded individuals who had also won a Silver Award. The main highlight was being a part of the Pearson Teaching Awards National Event which was televised as Britain’s Classroom Heroes. I didn’t know that my Business teacher from my time at Outwood Academy Freeston (formerly Freeston Business and Enterprise College), Ed Vickerman, was going to be there as alumni at the event – that was a brilliant surprise! 

Over the last year I have been given the opportunity to continue my work with STEM across the Academy and particularly within the science department. We have a number of individual projects which will hopefully be going to the regional ‘Big Bang Fair Near Me’ events to promote their hard work.

Additionally this year, due to winning this award, I was given the opportunity to coordinate all Newly Qualified Teacher and trainee teachers across the Academy. This has involved putting together a bespoke training programme for all of these colleagues and ensuring they all feel supported and developed throughout their time at Outwood Academy Shafton. I have also continued to work with the year-long IOP funded Physics Teacher Subject Specialism training course, for science teachers delivering physics outside of their subject area.

This year, our Academy has been extremely successful and our students are moving from strength to strength. We have a successful Scholar’s programme designed to support our students with experiences within subjects they are passionate about. We have also done a large amount of work with HeppSY to raise aspirations with our students and increase engagement with higher education. As an Academy we are also working to increase students’ cultural capital. We have organised activities this year such as an art trip to Barcelona, theatre trips, “Love to Read” campaigns and our new Cultural Capital gallery which is hosting our first exhibition: Landmarks of the World!

Overall, any opportunity to be involved with the Teaching Awards should be taken, as it has been a wonderful experience for both myself and my Academy. I am proud to have been a part of the Pearson National Teaching Awards and have memories from these events to last a lifetime!