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Welsh Teaching Awards finalists announced

14 Jun 2024 4 minute read
The College Merthyr Tydfil Inspire to Achieve Team

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

For the first time, the awards, which recognise the excellent work of our education workforce in Wales, were open to colleges as well as schools.

Nominations for the most inspiring, talented, and dedicated education professionals were received from parents, carers, learners and colleagues across Wales.


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. Plus new for this year, Lecturer of the Year and Learners’ Engagement in School/College.

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

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

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

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.

Cabinet Secretary for Education, Lynne Neagle

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 is an incredibly high standard, 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.
For more details visit:

Landscape Team (Gower College, Swansea)

The Professional Teaching Awards Cymru 2024 categories:

Headteacher/Principal of the Year

Dyfan Phillips, Ysgol y Llys, Prestatyn / Jamie Hallett, Ysgol Gymraeg Gilfach Fargod, Ysgol Bro Sannan, Bargoed / Richard Owen, Idris Davies School, Tredegar

Inspirational use of the Welsh Language

Alex Davies, Black Lane School, Wrexham / Angharad Jones, Chepstow School, Chepstow / Sam Jones, Malpas Church Primary School, Newport

Alex Davies (Black Lane School, Wrexham)

Teacher of the Year in a Primary School

Amy Bergiers, Ysgol Nantgaredig, Carmarthen / Daniella Sidnell, Malpas Church Primary School, Newport / Rhian Thomas, Catwg Primary School, Neath

Learners’ Award for Best Teacher/Lecturer

Emma Evans, Rhayader Church in Wales Primary School, Rhayader / Dr Paul Humberstone, St Brigid’s School, Denbigh / Rhian Evans, Gower College Swansea, Swansea

Teacher of the Year in a Secondary School

Dr Gareth Evans, Ysgol y Creuddyn, Llandudno / Rebecca Forward, Ysgol Bryn Derw ASD Special School, Newport / Victoria Rowe, Ysgol Penrhyn Dewi, St Davids

Learning Support Assistant

Carys Jones, Rhayader Church in Wales Primary School, Rhayader / Jo Wyatt, Ysgol Bryn Gwalia, Mold / Katie Bowen, Ysgol Panteg, Griffithstown

The Betty Campbell (MBE) award for promoting the contributions and perspectives of Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities

Amy Grimward, Ysgol Aberconwy, Conwy / Georgi Bennett, Pontarddulais Comprehensive School, Pontarddulais

Lecturer of the Year (NEW)

Emma Smith, Gower College Swansea, Swansea / Katie Davies, Bridgend College, Bridgend / Sadie Thackaberry, Coleg Cambria, Mold

Learners’ Engagement in School/College (NEW)

Bishop Vaughan Catholic School, Swansea / Landscaping and Eco-construction Team, Gower College, Swansea / The Inspire to Achieve Team, The College Merthyr Tydfil

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28 days ago

I’m sorry and this is no disrespect to the nominees who are clearly dedicated and hard working professionals, but in my opinion awards of this nature are just guff, and undermine the efforts of the thousands of other equally dedicated education professionals.

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