Top school staff and volunteers from around the county have been honoured at the Kent Teacher of the Year awards.
Finalists attended a special presentation evening at Hempstead House Country House Hotel and Spa in Bapchild.
The awards were organised by the KM Charity Team in partnership with the KM Group and people were asked to nominate the county’s top teachers.
There were a record-breaking 480 nominations for categories that included newly qualified teacher, primary, secondary, maths teacher and a team award.
Simon Dolby from the KM Charity Team said the event celebrates excellence and achievement in schools.
He said: “Sound teaching can make a huge difference to a child’s personal development, especially to their confidence and self esteem. It helps create well-rounded individuals who in turn give back to their community.
“The teachers and support staff recognised at the awards share passion, dedication and commitment to their vocation, they graft hard and give far beyond the call of duty.”
Mr Dolby added that they were grateful to all of the sponsors, Hempstead House, IMP, University of Kent, the Southern Educational Leadership Trust, Canterbury Christ Church University, Three R’s Teacher Recruitment, Nova IT Solutions, Learning Plus, Social Enterprise, Brachers Law, Kent County Council, Questor Insurance, Project Salus, the Battle of Britain Memorial Trust, the Marlowe Theatre, and the KM Group.
Organisations wishing to support the 2015 awards should contact Mr Dolby on 07989 164 752.
The Overall Winners:
Creative Arts Award 2014
Alison O’Neill and Kelly Thorpe, Dance Department, Herne Bay High School
Teacher Assistant of the Year Award 2014
Heather Hayes, Homewood School and 6th Form College
Pastoral Care Award 2014
Sarah Best, Regis Manor Primary School
Food Technology Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Heather Thomas, New Line Learning Academy
Geography Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Giles Whitehead, The Malling School
Literacy Award 2014
Pauline Woods and Angie Williams, Brookfield Infant School
History Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Chris Higgins, Folkestone School for Girls
Science and Technology Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Chris Coetzee, St George’s School, Gravesend
Support Staff Member of the Year 2014
Sharon Loader, Pluckley CE Primary School
Early Years Foundation Stage Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Sheilagh Schweitzer, Bligh Infant School
Maths Teacher of the Year Award 2014
John Bullen, The Skinners School
Newly Qualified Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Emma Millett, Ifield School
Volunteer of the Year Award 2014
Pat Buckley, King Ethelbert School
Team of the Year 2014
Rachel Johnson and Alexia Lang, Student Services Team, Maidstone Grammar School
Primary Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Amy Rowley, St George’s School, Sheppey
Secondary Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Thomas Chapman, The Ebbsfleet Academy
Head Teacher of the Year Award 2014
Julie Derrick, Invicta Grammar School
The District Winners:
CANTERBURY AND SWALE: Top Primary School Teacher: Craig May (Canterbury Academy) and Amy Rowley (St George's School, Sheppey); Top Creative Arts Team: Alison O'Neill and Kelly Thorpe (Dance Department, Herne Bay High School); Top Volunteer: Barbara Roberts (Whitstable Endowed CEJ School); Top Pastoral Care Member of Staff: Sarah Best (Regis Manor Primary School). NORTH KENT: Top Secondary School Teacher: Thomas Chapman (The Ebbsfleet Academy); Top Support Member of Staff: Ian Taylor (Holy Trinity Dartford); Top Science & IT Teacher: Chris Coetzee (St George's School, Gravesend); Top History Teacher: Christian Hayne (Meopham Community Primary); Top Early Years Foundation Stage Teacher: Clare Holder (Sheers Green Infants School); Top NQT: Emma Millett (Ifield School). SHEPWAY AND ASHFORD: Top History Teacher: Chris Higgins (Folkestone School for Girls); Top Teaching Assistant: Heather Hayes (Homewood School & 6th Form College); Top Support Member of Staff: Sharon Loader (Puckley CE Primary School). DOVER AND THANET: Top Primary School Teacher: Danielle Whiteing (Ash, Cartwright and Kelsey CEP School); Top Secondary School Teacher: Kate Hayes-Watkins (Castle Community College); Top Head Teacher: Sheilagh Roberts (Sandwich Junior School); Top Maths Teacher: Adam Purland (Hartsdown Academy College); Top Pastoral Care Member of Staff: Hayley Barrett (Drapers Mill Primary Academy); Top Volunteer: Pat Buckley (King Ethelbert School). MAIDSTONE: Food Technology Teacher: Heather Thomas (New Line Learning Academy); Top Head Teacher: Julie Derrick (Invicta Grammar School); Top Maths Teacher: Krisztina Zaborszky (Invicta Grammar School); Top Pastoral Team: Rachel Johnson and Alexia Lang (Student Services Team, Maidstone Grammar School). MEDWAY: Top Primary Teacher: Catherine Thacker (English Martyrs RC Primary School); Top Science & IT Teacher: Gemma Burson-Thomas (Rainham Mark Grammar School); Top Early Years Foundation Stage Teacher: Sheilagh Schweitzer (Bligh Infants School). WEST KENT: Top Geography Teacher: Giles Whitehead; Top Literacy Teacher Award: Pauline Woods and Angie Williams (Brookfield Infants School); Top Team: Jane Taylor and Chris Pollen (Reading to Dogs Team, Ightham Primary School); Top Primary Teacher, Sevenoaks: Andrew Murrock (Hextable Primary School); Top Primary Teacher, Tunbridge Wells: Esme Thomas (Rolvenden Primary School); Top Maths Teacher: John Bullen (The Skinners School).