Last Friday (5th July), the annual Education Awards celebrated the outstanding contributions of those who are making a difference to the education sector in the West Midlands.
The winners of the West Midlands Education Awards were unveiled at a glittering awards ceremony at the voco St John’s Hotel in Solihull, recognising both educators and educational supporters across sixteen categories with Birmingham City University as headline sponsors.
Those taking home the prestigious titles included, Innovating Minds (Transforming Lives Through Partnerships), Dr Laura Chamberlain – Warwick Business School (Teacher / Lecturer of the Year), Christ Church CE Primary School (Primary School of the Year) and Alan Pearson (Headteacher / Principal Dean of the Year.)
As well as taking home the beautiful glass trophies, each winner will have the opportunity to work with their category’s industry sponsor on a project that will be filmed and showcased at next year’s awards.
For the first time, the awards partnered with the Pearson Teaching Awards with all winners being automatically entered into the televised ceremony, which gets aired on BBC’s Classroom Heroes.
Guests were entertained throughout the evening by Presenter Phil Oldershaw, there was an energetic live performance from students at Aston Performing Arts Academy and a hugely inspiring motivational speech from Charlie Fogarty MBE.
Charlie, from Solihull, is a talented footballer who suffered a life-changing brain injury in 2012. He has since rebuilt his life to continue playing the sport he loves and has used his experiences to deliver motivational talks to everyone from school pupils and hospital staff, to aspiring young footballers.
Debbie Westwood, Headteacher at Christ Church CE Primary School, says: “I’m absolutely thrilled for my little school! We are privileged to work where we do in Sparkbrook, which is one of the most deprived areas of the city.
“The area means even more to me as I was born there, so I love the community and the staff, parents, students and families who make my job so much easier because it’s such a special place to work.”
Dr Asha Patel, Innovating Minds, continued: “We were up against some amazing organisations that operate on a national level, so to be announced as the winner was a huge shock! This is particularly great for the team as they’ve put some much effort and hard work in to Innovating Minds, which has grown incredibly quickly over a very short space of time.
“It’ll be a huge boost to take this award back to them and celebrate the amazing work they all do.”
Innovating Minds exists to nourish young people’s mental health. They work in educational settings to support by upskilling educational staff and enabling young people and their parents to have access to specialist psychological support.
Jas Rohel, CEO & Founder of the Education Awards, added: “The West Midlands has a great community of individuals supporting the education sector and making a difference in people’s lives. The ceremony has been a wonderful opportunity to shine a light on their achievements and give them the recognition they deserve.
“We’d like to congratulate both the winners and finalists for the tremendous work they do and for being part of such a wonderful event. A huge thank you also goes to our sponsors, ambassadors, judges, organizers and all those who attended and supported the awards.”
Following on from previous success, the awards will also be held in Manchester, with hopes to expand elsewhere in the UK throughout 2020.
Educational Supporter of the Year
Sponsored by The National Energy Hub
Headteacher / Principal Dean of the Year
Sponsored by Aspire People
Alan Pearson – New Invention School
Teacher / Lecturer of the Year
Sponsored by Careers Calendar
Dr Laura Chamberlain – Warwick Business School
Transforming Lives Through Partnerships
Sponsored by Touchwood
Secondary School of the Year
Sponsored by Midland Metro Alliance
Outstanding Contribution to the Local Community
Sponsored by Chauffeur Services Direct
Services for Education
Early Years School of the Year
Sponsored by Love Writing Co.
Highfield Day Nursery
Outstanding Support for Students
Sponsored by Aston University
Aston University Engineering Academy
Primary School of the Year
Sponsored by Kumon
Christ Church CE Primary School
Sciences, Technologies, Engineering and Mathematics Awards (STEM)
Sponsored by Elonex
Educational Resource Provider of the Year
Sponsored by Toppa
Entrepreneurial Education Establishment of the Year
Sponsored by NatWest
Warwick Business School
Proactive Educational Provider of an Apprenticeship Programme
Sponsored by Ascentia Corporate Coaching
Further Education College of the Year
Sponsored by West Midland Reserve Forces & Cadets Association
University of the Year
Sponsored by Open Study College
University College Birmingham
Sponsored by Birmingham City University