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South West Wales finalists revealed for Welsh teaching awards

EDUCATION professionals from South West Wales have been announced as finalists for the national awards which returns with a new category

This year, twenty-seven education professionals have made it to the finals of the sixth annual Professional Teaching Awards Cymru, which celebrates the inspiring education workforce across Wales. 

Nominations were received from parents, carers, learners and colleagues and the finalists for South West Wales include Victoria Rowe (Ysgol Penrhyn Dewi, St Davids) for Teacher of the Year in a Secondary School, Amy Bergiers (Ysgol Nantgaredig, Carmarthen) for Teacher of the Year in a Primary School, Georgi Bennett (Pontarddulais Comprehensive School, Pontarddulais) for the Betty Campbell (MBE) award for promoting the contributions and perspectives of Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities, Bishop Vaughan Catholic School (Swansea) for the Learners’ Engagement in School/College award.

For the first time ever, the awards were open to the college workforce as well as schools.  

Gower College Swansea have seen three finalists for this year’s awards – Rhian Evans for the Learners’ Award for Best Teacher/Lecturer, plus finalists in two categories new for this year: Emma Smith for Lecturer of the Year, and the Landscaping and Eco-construction Team for Learners’ Engagement. 

The 10 award categories include Headteacher/Principal of the Year, Inspirational Use of the Welsh Language, Outstanding New Teacher, Teacher of the Year in a Primary School, Learners’ Award for Best Teacher/Lecturer, Teacher of the Year in a Secondary School, Learning Support Assistant and Betty Campbell (MBE) award for promoting the contributions and perspectives of Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities. And new for this year, Lecturer of the Year and Learners’ Engagement in School/College.

Sadie Thackaberry (Coleg Cambria, Mold), Emma Smith (Gower College, Swansea) and Katie Davies (Bridgend College, Bridgend) are the finalists for the new Lecturer of the Year award.

The Learners’ Engagement in School/College prize was created to award a school or college that has demonstrated an excellent approach to help improve learner engagement and attendance. 

The three schools and colleges which have gone above and beyond to improve learner engagement and are finalists for the new Engagement award, are Bishop Vaughan Catholic School, Gower College Swansea, and The College Merthyr Tydfil. Many complex and interlinked factors can contribute to learner engagement. 

Engagement in school/college impacts attainment, well-being and citizenship, and the award celebrates where learners have been supported in this area.

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The Cabinet Secretary for Education, Lynne Neagle, said: “I’m delighted to reveal the finalists for this year’s Professional Teaching Awards Cymru. We received the highest number of nominations to date and, as ever, there was an outstanding level of competition, highlighting the inspiring education professionals we have in Wales.

“This year we wanted to recognise the good work happening in Wales to improve learner engagement and attendance. While many of the concerns around the wellbeing of young people pre-date the COVID-19 pandemic, it has introduced more complexities. The new award for ‘Learners’ Engagement in School/College’ is a recognition of the amazing teams and of individuals that are working hard to put extra support in place.

“I look forward to celebrating these incredibly motivated individuals who are so committed to getting the best out of their learners”. 

Join the conversation with #TeachingAwardsCymru2024 or follow @WG_Education.
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