TWO staff members at West Beechboro Primary School have been announced as finalists in the 2017 State Education Awards.
Kelly Wylie has been named as a finalist in the WA Aboriginal and Islander Education Officer section of the education awards, while Anthony Horn has been names as a finalist in the WA Premier’s Primary Teacher of the Year division.
Both teachers were nominated by principal Ray Boyd, who said that both Anthony and Kelly underplay the massive impact they have on the school.
“The trouble with Kelly and Anthony is they’ll just say they’re doing their job, but when you compare it to what’s happening in the system, they’re doing way more than what their job prescribes them to do,” he said.
“Kel does a lot of work with our indigenous kids right across the school.
“She travels out to pick up kids, she works with our young achievers club which is part of the Nyoongar and Sports Wellbeing Centre, she’s got links with Swan Alliance, she works with Maralinga, so while she works for the school she involves multiple agencies and brings significant benefit to the kids.
“Anthony is the same, Anthony started off in a private school setting, Scotch, and we’re probably the third or fourth school he’s been to in the government system, and his kids do all the things you would expect of private school kids.
“He does a lot of work with The Smith Family, he works with outside agencies so every year, the kids get Christmas presents together and go out and donate them to those outside agencies.
“I mean, I posted something up on our Facebook page to say he was nominated and the number of people from other schools who either know or have been taught by Anthony congratulating him, he leaves an impression.
“He as an impact on everyone in the school.
“If you went in his classroom as a kid you’d think wow, this guy really cares and he’s really uncomfortable with being nominated, which for me is all the more reason to nominate him.”
Ms Wylie said her role working with indigenous children was challenging but very rewarding.
“Seeing kids who are struggling with attendance and struggling in their learning, helping them turn the corner and seeing that improvement firsthand is incredible,” she said.
“I’m incredible proud to be nominated, and to see Anthony nominated as well, I think having two teachers nominated is great for the school.”
Mr Horn teaches Year 4 students but he also takes a leadership role in the school, working as the phase manager for the middle school.
He said the most rewarding part of his job was introducing the joy of learning to his students.
“It’s nice to get a nod that you’re heading in the right direction with your teaching but it’s not something you go out looking for,” he said.
“I just like to make sure that as a teacher, I can open as many doors for the kids as possible and help them have the brightest future possible.”
Site visits to finalists’ schools by education award judges started on Wednesday and will run for a week, with the winners announced at a gala event at Crown Perth on November 24.
By Liam Ducey