Posted on May 22, 2014 in News

We are delighted to share some great news with our website visitors!

Below is an article posted on 21st May 2014 by Wirral Council Press Office, entitled ‘School’s Silver Showing at National Teaching Awards’. We have added some photos which were taken at our recent celebratory tea party.

One of Wirral’s most specialist secondary schools has received no fewer than three silver awards in a national competition that recognises exceptional teachers and teaching.

Birkenhead’s Kilgarth School, which works with boys with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties, was considered alongside 20,000 other schools for this year’s Pearson Teaching Awards in a number of categories.

And, amazingly, the school has achieved ‘silver’ awards in three of the categories. They will now join fellow silver winners at the UK final of the Teaching Awards at London’s Guildhall on 26th October. There, 10 silver award winners will be identified to receive a gold award at the ceremony, which will be filmed and broadcast by the BBC.


Our teacher-themed celebration cakes!

Staff from Kilgarth were recognised in the Award for Outstanding School Team of the Year, the Award for Teaching Assistant of the Year and the Award for Outstanding New Teacher of the Year.

The whole ethos of the school is based on care, responsibility and proactive behavioural management, where mutual respect is of prime importance. Pupils are encouraged to be courteous and well mannered and are openly discouraged from abuse – either physical or verbal.

The Pearson Teaching Awards are an annual celebration of exceptional teachers and teaching. Founded in 1999 by film director, Lord David Puttnam, they recognise the life-changing impact of an inspirational teacher on the lives of the young people they teach. In recognition of the success in the Outstanding School Team of the Year category, Headteacher Mr Baker said: “I feel honoured to work with such a successful, passionate, determined and committed team of professionals,” while the Pearson Teaching Award judges added “this school is a beacon of excellence, providing the very best educational opportunities for the young people in its care”.

Mrs Helen Pullin received the silver award for Teaching Assistant of the Year. Mr Baker said: “Helen is quite simply a remarkable Teaching Assistant. Her work ethic and personal qualities have made an incredible impression on all the pupils at Kilgarth.


Mrs Pullin receiving her award from Mrs Simmons, Chair of Governors, and flowers from Mr Baker, Headteacher

“She takes a lead role in mentoring pupils, all of whom have statements for BESD (behavioural, emotional and social difficulties). She effectively supports pupils who are in crisis, calming them and enabling them to return to their learning. She is also heavily involved in the literacy programme, helping improve reading in every single year group!”

The judges added: “She has a fantastic ability to develop rapport with pupils. Her dedication, commitment, expertise and care are second to none and she is a very worthy winner of this prestigious Award.”

The silver Award for Outstanding New Teacher of the Year was given to Ms Jane Westlake, a newly qualified teacher in mathematics who uses a range of teaching strategies to engage some of Wirral’s most hard to reach children.


Ms Westlake is pictured with her plaque, one of 3 awarded to Kilgarth.

Judges said: “The impact on the children in her care has been outstanding. She tailors personalised learning strategies for each individual pupil so that each and every one can achieve their full potential and her impact can be felt in every aspect of the school and its wider community. She is a very worthy winner of this prestigious Award.”

The president of the Pearson Teaching Awards is Oscar-winning actress Emma Thompson, who said: “I am genuinely proud and honoured to be the president of the Teaching Awards. I owe so much of what I’ve done to my fantastic teachers at school and university and it is exciting to join in celebrating what is probably the most important profession of them all.”

Thank you everyone for your support!