Teachers recognised with national award

WINNERS: Work by Burnside Primary School teachers Trudi Browne and Nic Rickard has been recognised in The Education Hub’s inaugural Bright Spots Awards for innovative education initiatives.

Two Burnside Primary School teachers have been recognised for designing an innovative oral language programme to help new entrant pupils struggling with language skills.

Trudi Browne and Nic Rickard were one of five winners of The Education Hub’s inaugural Bright Spots Awards.

The awards recognise innovative education initiatives to address challenges facing New Zealand schools. After realising that up to 70 per cent of children starting at their school lacked the necessary language skills to be confident learners, the pair teamed up with speech language therapist Sharne Quickenden to develop a bespoke oracy framework. It comprises specific tools to support pupils to build oral language skills and an accompanying professional development programme for teachers.

The Education Hub chairwoman Maury Leyland said the importance of oral language skills as a foundation for early literacy is well established in educational research.

The winners receive funding and a two-year professional development programme funded by NEXT Foundation.