Staff at a Fulwood primary school have been nominated for a School Superhero award as part of a national campaign by fintech Miconex, and the Preston Gift Card, to recognise staff working in schools.Advertisement
Acting headteacher at Queen’s Drive Primary School, Michael Aspinall, was nominated for the award alongside teachers Mrs Robertson, Miss Simmons, Mr Taylor, Mrs Brame and Mr Chesters by parent Haleemah Hussain, who has five children at the school.
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She said: “Since he took over as acting headteacher, Mr Aspinall has been like a breath of fresh air. Many of the children at the school are Muslim and the children only get one day off to celebrate Eid, which takes place over three days.
“Mr Aspinall planned a big Eid celebration for the children, letting the children come into school in non-uniform and doing lots of the fun activities that normally take place at Christmas to celebrate Eid too.
“Queen’s Drive is a diverse school, and this was such an inclusive gesture from Mr Aspinall, and not one that I’ve heard of any other school doing.
“My son, Zack, has selective mutism and I was really worried about him moving up a class in September. I spoke to Mr Aspinall and he arranged for Zack to have time with his new teacher so he could get used to her. Miss Simmons is Zack’s teacher and has been for the past two years.
“When Zack first went into Miss Simmons’ class, he was very quiet and shy but through praise, encouragement and making Zack feel special, Miss Simmons has completely changed Zack. He is now really talkative. Watching Miss Simmons interact with Zack during remote learning was a pleasure.
“Remote learning was difficult. I have 8 children in total but Queen’s Drive provided me with laptops to use. Mrs Robertson, who is my son Sully’s early years teacher, was sending us games to do as a family, so Sully would be learning without even realising.
“Mrs Robertson encouraged all of us to do the Wake Up and Shake Up and would check in with us as parents too. At the end of one Zoom session for the children, Mrs Robertson asked if any adults wanted to stay on, to just have a chat and the chance to speak to another adult, she has the approach that happy parents mean happy children and cares about the whole family.
“My daughter Aisha is an able learner but would still find some concepts tricky to understand. Her teacher Mr Taylor would take the time to make sure she understood, giving Aisha extra work that she’d asked for. Aisha loves Harry Potter, but Mr Taylor encouraged Aisha out of her reading comfort zone and now she is reading lots of different books.
“Mrs Brame teaches my son Adam. Adam isn’t that keen on English and prefers writing. When I told Mrs Brame that Adam loves to tell me about his day in detail, Mrs Brame had the ingenious idea of asking Adam to write down what he did in the day, using his adjectives, clauses and nouns.
“Adam will do anything for Mrs Brame and didn’t even realise he was doing work, it was a task he enjoyed. She is such an approachable teacher.
“All of the children at Queen’s Drive Primary School love Mr Chesters. My daughter Amber who is now in high school still talks about Mr Chesters as being her favourite teacher. He’ll sing, he’ll dance, and he’ll make learning fun.
“Mr Chesters did wonders during lockdown for my daughter Amelia, keeping her motivated. Like Mr Aspinall, and all of the teachers at Queen’s Drive, Mr Chesters really deserves recognition for his hard work.”
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Any staff member working in a school is eligible to be nominated for an award, including teachers, teaching assistants, catering/lunchtime staff, administration teams, caretakers, coaches and volunteers.
One school superhero will receive a £50 Town and City Gift Card for their choice of over 60 schemes around the UK and Ireland, including the Preston Gift Card, with their school or class receiving a £250 cash prize.
The Preston Gift Card can be spent with over 80 businesses in the city.
Families have up to 31 August to nominate their school superheroes who have made a positive contribution to their school community via the Town and City Gift Cards.
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Have your children got teachers who have gone above and beyond during the pandemic? Let us know in the comments below.