Mrs Debbie Seckold, Lithgow High School
Nominated by Priscilla Rhodes, Bachelor of Arts (Honours)
Mrs. Debbie Seckold is a mathematics teacher at Lithgow High School. Mrs Seckold impacts her students' lives in ways that are both practical and personal. She not only provides high quality mathematics classes but also instils the belief in her students that they can be high achievers in spite of challenges. Mrs Seckold also teaches her students valuable skills in time management and study techniques, which assists them beyond the high school classroom into their university education. To Mrs Seckold, each individual student is a person with potential to be nurtured, not just a face in the crowd. She has significantly impacted her students' educational experience, and her effort, dedication, support and quality of teaching exemplifies what it means to be a good teacher.
Mr Phillip Booth, Henry Kendall High School
Nominated by Michael Kale, Bachelor of Medical Radiation Science
Mr Phillip Booth is a science teacher at Henry Kendall High School. Mr Booth is an exceptional teacher and mentor, investing time in each individual student to ensure that they meet their academic potential. Providing support above and beyond the regular demands of his role, Mr Booth donates his time outside of the classroom to tutoring and mentoring students who seek to further progress their learning. His deep knowledge of his subject is equalled by his willingness to provide emotional support where required, and the result is lasting success for his students well beyond their high school years. Mr Booth's impact on his students as an educator and guide has been profound; he is a very worthy recipient of this award.
Mrs Margaret Rennie, Newcastle High School
Nominated by Syidah Harris, Bachelor of Design (Architecture)
Ms Margaret Rennie is a Mathematics teacher at Newcastle High School. Ms Rennie is a teacher who is passionate about her subject. She challenges all students, especially those who think that mathematics is not for them, to become enthused with a love of mathematical thinking. Mrs Rennie brings a strong sense of social justice and equity to her work and ensures that students who have experienced hardship or disadvantage do not miss the benefits that an education in mathematics can bring. She is hard working and contributes at all levels to school life and gives students the extra help they need to succeed. Her commitment and enthusiasm for learning provides students with a profound and life-changing educational experience. She is an asset to the school and the community, and an inspiration to all.
Mrs Jennifer Noone, Irrawang High School
Nominated by Kristienne Thomas, Bachelor Teaching/Bachelor of Design and Technology
Mrs Jennifer Noone is a Technology teacher at Irrawang High School. Mrs Noone has been challenging and inspiring students for over 25 years and demonstrates unwavering enthusiasm and commitment to teaching. She is an exceptional mentor and teacher who encourages students to produce their best work. Her dedication to supporting students through difficult academic and personal times is reflected in the tutoring she offers outside of classes. Her approach to teaching is underpinned by a sound theoretical framework and she integrates new technologies in the classroom. Mrs Noone is a highly respected teacher and colleague and a role model for students and staff.
Mrs Marcia Buxton, Merewether High School
Nominated by Gemma Le Mesurier, Bachelor of Arts
Mrs Marcia Buxton is an English teacher at Merewether High School. Mrs. Buxton is a teacher who changes lives. She is kind, caring and nurturing, but has a commanding presence in the classroom. As a teacher, Mrs Buxton gives of herself, and reveals so much of her personality and enthusiasm for the subject. Her passion inspires her students to learn. She makes English thrilling, exciting, and full of meaning and relevance. Mrs Buxton shows respect for each of her students, even those who others might label "a lost cause". This approach earns her the respect of everyone she teaches. For her students, Mrs Buxton is a woman who possesses the power to reach people and change lives. She enters a life and in a quiet way, never leaves it.
Mr Warrick Capper, St Francis Xavier's College
Nominated by Daniel Beard, Bachelor of Biomedical Science
Mr Warrick Capper is a Biology and Chemistry teacher at St Francis Xavier's College Hamilton. Mr Capper' guidance, enthusiasm and willingness to make himself available beyond the classroom is central to the educational achievements of his students. Mr Capper supports all students, including those who are struggling, with constructive criticism and encouragement, inspiring them to stay motivated and keep improving. He makes it interesting and exciting to learn about how and why things are the way they are in nature. Most of all he always does this with a smile on his face. Mr Capper turns students with a vague interest in biology and chemistry into passionate students of science with a love for learning. This award is a timely recognition of his outstanding contribution to education for over thirty years.
Mr Clinton Mewburn, Hillston Central School
Nominated by Jessica Collins, Bachelor of Nursing
Mr Clinton Mewburn is a Biology and Chemistry teacher at Hillston Central School. Mr Mewburn is a teacher whose enthusiasm and commitment is reflected in his availability to students and the additional classes and resources he offers. He makes sure students fully understand their work, are well-prepared, and motivated to achieve their best. It is significant that Mr Mewburn does this for small groups of students in an isolated school in far west New South Wales. He uses traditional teaching methods as well as videoconferencing and digital technologies to reach students at locations separated by over 250km. His dedicated efforts ensure that students, who could quite easily be disadvantaged through their small number and geographic location, receive a world class education that continues to inspire them well after they leave school. Mr Mewburn's outstanding contribution to the education of students has been going on for many years without any expectation of reward. It is timely and appropriate that this achievement is recognised and celebrated.
Mr David Brown, Dungog High School
Nominated by Megan Ford, Bachelor of Mathematics/Bachelor of Science
David Brown is a mathematics teacher at Dungog High School. He is a passionate and caring teacher who goes the extra mile for students and succeeds in making mathematics a highlight of the school day, even when it involves tackling difficult problems. As Head Teacher, David Brown makes time for students when they most need support. He gains their respect and makes learning exciting. David Brown’s love of his work is a shining example that stays with his students and inspires them to keep achieving. His generosity, passion and enthusiasm make him a role model for students and a very worthy recipient of this award.
Mr Paul Tierney, Kinross Wolaroi School, Orange
Nominated by Ben Abell, Bachelor of Construction Management (Building)
Paul Tierney is Assistant Registrar, mathematics teacher and sporting coach at Kinross Wolaroi School in Orange. Mr Tierney is a teacher who has thoroughly enjoyed the privilege of supporting students as they face the tough mental, emotional and physical challenges of completing their senior studies. Mr Tierney takes his role as a student mentor very seriously and is always approachable, available and willing to be involved in tutoring, sporting and mentoring activities. His efforts to assist students with career and study decisions are exemplary. Paul Tierney has made a lasting and profound contribution to his school and his students and is a very worthy recipient of this award.
Ms Helen MacFadyen, Lisarow High School
Nominated by Carolyn Little, Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood)
Helen MacFadyen is a mathematics teacher at Lisarow High School. Mrs MacFadyen is an inspiring teacher who makes her subject exciting and relevant to the real world. Her patience and imagination combine to create a truly memorable learning experience that motivates students to extend themselves. She dedicates hours of her time outside of regular school hours to support students in their studies, and to encourage them in their creative endeavours. Helen MacFadyen is an outstanding teacher and a very worthy recipient of this award.
Mr Ian Atkinson, Cessnock High
Nominated by Melinda Hawthorne, Bachelor of Engineering (Environmental Engineering)
Ian Atkinson teaches Mathematics at Cessnock High School. Ian is a dedicated teacher who understands his students’ needs. He always focuses on whether the students understand what he is saying as opposed to what he is required to teach in the syllabus. His openness while teaching creates a respectful learning environment that makes students feel comfortable to ask questions. Ian gives his students confidence to believe that they can do anything they set their mind to and is a very worthy recipient of this award.
Ms Deborah Falconer, Cessnock High
Nominated by Stacy Ward, Bachelor Arts/Bachelor of Teaching (Primary)
Deborah Falconer is Head Teacher of Creative and Performing Arts at Cessnock High School. Deborah displays confidence and enthusiasm in her teaching and captures the attention of students from the second they step foot in the classroom. Deborah goes out of her way to assist all students. She is proud and supportive and makes a real difference to her students’ self esteem. She is also a favourite with other teachers. Deborah is inspirational, enthusiastic, determined, exciting to be with. She is truly worthy of this award.
Ms Marilynne Gledhill, Whitebridge High
Nominated by Kate Drew, Bachelor of Laws/Diploma of Legal Practice
Marilynne Gledhill teaches English at Whitebridge High School. Marilynne is a no-nonsense, down-to-earth teacher with a strong teaching style and dry sense of humour. She listens to student suggestions on interesting ways to learn and implements them in her classes. She makes learning enjoyable for her students and knows how to push them to reach their potential. Marilynne is a beautiful person with a passion for learning. She is truly a fitting recipient of this award.