County’s top educators awarded

Author Nick Butterworth (seated front centre) joins champions at the Kent Teacher of the Year Awards 2018


More than 50 inspirational teachers, education professionals, support staff, and volunteers were honoured at the Kent Teacher of the Year Awards 2018 on Friday (May 18).

The event, organised annually by the KM Charity Team, celebrates excellence and achievement in teaching, with a record-breaking 1,200 nominations received by parents, pupils, and school staff this year.

The awards were co-hosted by Simon Dolby, chief executive of the KM Charity Team, and Nicola Everett, news editor for kmfm. Special guests included KCC cabinet member for education Roger Gough, and celebrated children’s author and literacy ambassador for the KM Charity Team, Nick Butterworth.

Fifty-four staff and teams representing 49 schools and colleges were named as district winners with 23 crowned best in Kent.

Champions included Steve Davies of the Sheerness West Federation, who was awarded Kent Executive Head Teacher of the Year, and Kim Howes from the Maidstone campus of Mid Kent College who received the Kent Higher Education Teacher of the Year Award.

Steven Holdcroft from the University of Kent, Cllr Roger Gough and author Nick Butterworth present the Kent Executive Head Teacher of the Year Award to Steve Davies (second right) of Sheerness West Federation

Winners were decided by a panel of judges featuring representatives from Kent County Council, Medway Council, The University of Kent, Kent Sport, Canterbury Christ Church University, the University of Greenwich,Three R’s Teacher Recruitment, MY Trust, Social Enterprise Kent, Beanstalk, CXK, Salus, LoopCR, Kreston Reeves, KidZania, Diggerland, and Kent Further Education.

Mr Dolby said: “Thank you to everyone who submitted a nomination telling us all about the standout individuals working in Kent schools and colleges today.

“You have done a great service to many hard-working, talented, yet extremely humble people, who are shaping the hearts and minds of future generations. These individuals are thrilled that their efforts are appreciated – whether they were one of the 54 winners, or one of the hundreds of recipients of highly commended letters.”

The event aimed to spread best practice to all education professionals in the county and to this end a booklet has been published and circulated giving details of each award win.

The awards dinner took place at the Mercure Maidstone Great Danes hotel with support from Blessing by Blé, Hornby, Independent Music Productions, and the KM Group.Teaching champs continued the celebrations into the night at a disco provided by The Boombox UK.

Organisations interested in getting involved with the 2019 awards should contact Mr Dolby at or by calling 07989 164 752.

The KM Charity Team provide a range of services for schools including the walk to school scheme Super Wow (Walk on Wednesday). Schools have until July 1 to sign up for Super Wow for next academic year and receive a 20% discount and entry into a prize draw to win 400 books for the school library. Visit

The overall winners 2018

The Gulbenkian Theatre Arts Award for Inspiring Creativity and Innovation

Clive Soord, Canterbury College – EKC Group

Kent Pastoral Care Provider of the Year

Angie Turner and Zoe Danson, Upton Junior School, Broadstairs, Thanet

Kent Apprenticeship Assessor of the Year

David Skinner, North Kent College, Dartford

Kent Teaching Assistant of the Year

Fiona Halsall, Ulcombe CEP School, Maidstone

Kent School Business Manager of the Year

Catherine Dottridge, Bennett Memorial Diocesan School, Tunbridge Wells

Kent Schools Volunteer of the Year

Alan Norley, St Edward’s Catholic Primary School, Sheerness

Kent Careers Advisor of the Year

Amie Power, New Horizons London South East Academy Trust, Bexley

Kent Sport Teacher of the Year

TaylaStrudwick, Hillview School for Girls, Tonbridge

Kent Technical/Vocational Teacher of the Year

Alison Ackroyd, Mid Kent College – Medway Campus, Gillingham

Kent ICT Champion of the Year

Tim Jackson, Broadstairs College – EKC Group

Kent Drama Teacher of the Year

Neal Andrews, Canterbury High School

Kent Literacy Teacher of the Year

Stella Martin, Borough Green Primary School, Sevenoaks

Kent Music Teacher of the Year

Mark Heaton, Invicta Grammar School, Maidstone

Kent Mathematics Teacher of the Year

Ross Butler, Saint George’s CE School, Gravesham

Kent Trainee Teacher of the Year

Kat Harris, Academy of Cuxton Schools, Rochester, Thanet

Kent NQT of the Year

Adela Granger, St Anthony’s School, Margate, Thanet

Kent Higher Education Teacher of the Year

Kim Howes, Mid Kent College – Maidstone Campus

Kent Bioscience Teacher of the Year

Jaco Du Plooy, Norton Knatchbull School, Ashford

Kent Physical Science Teacher of the Year

Jade Wells, Strood Academy, Rochester, Thanet

Kent Team of the Year

St Mary of Charity Teaching Staff, St Mary of Charity CEP School, Faversham

Kent Primary Teacher of the Year

Colin Taylor, Brabourne CEP School, Ashford

Kent Secondary Teacher of the Year

AneelaGovender, Wilmington Academy, Dartford

Kent Executive Head Teacher of the Year

Steve Davies, Sheerness West Federation

The district winners 2018

ASHFORD: Top Team: Rolvenden Primary School Team (Rolvenden Primary School); Top Primary Teacher: Colin Taylor (Brabourne Primary School); Top Sport Teacher: Nicholas Leggat (Tenterden Primary Federation); Top SEN Teacher: Peter Barnett (The Wyvern School); Top Secondary Teacher: Jaco Du Plooy (Norton Knatchbull School).BEXLEY AND BROMLEY: Top Head Teacher: Claire Whittington (Normandy Primary School); Top Careers Teacher: Amie Power (New Horizons London South East Academy Trust). CANTERBURY: Top Technical/Vocational Teacher: Clive Soord (Canterbury College – EKC Group); Top NQT: Abby Turner (Briary Primary School, Herne Bay); Top Primary Teacher: Jacky Humphreys (Reculver CEP School, Herne Bay); Top Drama Teacher: Neal Andrews (Canterbury High School); Top Volunteer: Janet Larkinson (Canterbury High School); Top Caretaker: Adrian Penfold (Westmeads Community Infants, Whitstable).DARTFORD AND GRAVESHAM: Top Apprenticeship Assessor: David Skinner (North Kent College, Dartford); Top Secondary Teacher for Dartford: AneelaGovender (Wilmington Academy); Top NQT: Daniel Mackey (Saint George’s CE School, Gravesham); Top Secondary Teacher: Ross Butler (Saint George’s CE School, Gravesham). DEAL AND DOVER: Top Technical/Vocational Teacher of the Year: Julie Coyle (Dover Technical College – EKC Group); Top Primary Teacher: Louise Friend (Deal Parochial Church of England Primary School). MAIDSTONE: Top Head Teacher: Hayley Liddon (Tiger Primary School); Top Higher Education Teacher: Kim Howes (Mid Kent College – Maidstone Campus); Top NQT: Charlotte Fletcher (Invicta Grammar School); Top Secondary Teacher: Mark Heaton (Invicta Grammar School); Top Volunteer: Alvin Shaw (Park Way Primary School); Top Teaching Assistant: Fiona Halsall (Ulcombe CEP School).MEDWAY: Top Team: Specialist Support Assistants Team (Twydall Primary School, Nursery, and Children’s Centre, Gillingham); Top Deputy Head Teacher: Karin Tillett (Hilltop Primary School, Rochester); Top Head Teacher: Paul Cross (Hempstead Junior School, Gillingham); Top Technical/Vocational Teacher: Alison Ackroyd (Mid Kent College – Medway Campus, Gillingham); Top Trainee Teacher: Kat Harris (The Academy of Cuxton Schools, Rochester); Top Secondary Teacher: Jade Wells (Strood Academy, Rochester). SHEPWAY: Special Recognition Award (posthumous): Corinne Owen (The Beacon School, Folkestone); Top Further Education Teacher: Zak Waters (Folkestone College – EKC Group); Top Primary Teacher: Brice Dempster (Seabrook CEP School, Hythe); Top Sport Teacher: KavanRisby (Palmarsh Primary School, Hythe); Top Mathematics Teacher: Stephen James (Sandgate Primary School, Folkestone). THANET: Top Pastoral Care Team: Angie Turner and Zoe Danson (Upton Junior School, Broadstairs); Top ICT Teacher: Tim Jackson (Broadstairs College – EKC Group); Top NQT: Adela Granger (St Anthony’s School, Margate); Top Head Teacher: John Letts (St Ethelbert’s Catholic Primary School, Ramsgate); Top Primary Teacher: Scott Tift (Upton Junior School, Broadstairs); Top Pastoral Care Officer: Tony Perks (St George’s Foundation School, Broadstairs). SWALE: Top Team: St Mary of Charity Teaching Staff (St Mary of Charity Primary School, Faversham); Top Primary Teacher: Patrick Burns (Sheldwich Primary School, Faversham); Top Pastoral Care Officer: Clare Bush (Queenborough Primary School and Nursery, Sheppey); Top Executive Head Teacher: Steve Davies (Sheerness West Federation); Top Volunteer: Alan Norley (St Edward’s Catholic Primary School, Sheerness); Top Business Manager: Linda Lucas (Potential in Everyone Academy Trust, Sittingbourne); WEST KENT: Top Trainee Teacher: Eleanor Garland (Fordcombe CEP School, Tunbridge Wells); Top Primary Teacher: Stella Martin (Borough Green Primary School, Sevenoaks); Top School Business Manager: Catherine Dottridge (Bennett Memorial Diocesan School, Tunbridge Wells). TONBRIDGE AND MALLING: Top Team: Jayne Laker and Hearing Impaired Unit (Slade Primary School, Tonbridge); Top Secondary Teacher: Aliza Goren (The Malling School); Top Sport Teacher: TaylaStrudwick (Hillview School for Girls, Tonbridge).

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