School teachers win uni awards for excellence

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Secondary school teachers from across the state have been recognised for their excellence in mentoring hundreds of University of Adelaide student teachers, who represent the next generation of school educators.

This year, the University of Adelaide has placed 460 teaching students in schools right across the state for their compulsory professional practice experience. More than 200 of those were hosted by 113 schools in first semester.

The five-week practicum is a vital learning component for teaching students, and must be completed by all final-year Bachelor of Teaching or Graduate Diploma in Education students.

Last night (Monday 28 June), the University's School of Education held its inaugural awards for mentor teachers, recognising the growing importance of these mentors to student teachers.

"Mentor teachers in schools are valued very highly as collaborators in the education of our student teachers," says Professor Tania Aspland, Head of the University of Adelaide's School of Education.

"Their professional knowledge and experience, and the generous guidance and support which they give to student teachers, is worthy of recognition. These mentors give up a lot of their time to assist our students and we want them to know that their work is of great value."

During their recent five-week practicum, University of Adelaide student teachers were asked to nominate a mentor who was outstanding in any one of four categories:

  • Inspiration: the Mentor Teacher who fuelled the student teacher's passion for the teaching profession;
  • Knowledge: the Mentor Teacher who demonstrated a wealth of information on all aspects of teaching;
  • Support: the Mentor Teacher who showed support above and beyond what was expected of them; or
  • Role-model: the Mentor Teacher who modelled all the attributes, beliefs, and qualities desired in an education professional.

The winners are:

Inspiration: Tracy Bellamy from Murray Bridge High School
Knowledge: Penny Collins from Annesley College
Support: Shane Rowett from Naracoorte High School
Role-model (joint winners): Mei French from Our Lady of the Sacred Heart College AND Joelene Anderson from Jamestown Community School

Education Minister Jay Weatherill congratulated the award winners.

"Teachers hold the key to our future, inspiring our young people to be the best they can be," Mr Weatherill says. "These awards are going to leaders in the profession and I join the university in recognising them."


Contact Details

Professor Tania Aspland
Head, School of Education
The University of Adelaide
Business: + 61 8 8313 5692

Mr David Ellis
Deputy Director, Media and Corporate Relations
External Relations
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5414
Mobile: +61 (0)421 612 762