A special needs education expert from South Tyneside has been honoured in a prestigious national teaching awards scheme.
Mark Lambert received a Silver Teaching Award in the Award for Excellence in Special Needs Education category of the national Pearson Teaching Awards.
Mark, 30, is manager of special education needs and disability provision and additional learning support at Tyne Coast College, of which South Tyneside College is part.
He overseas work which supports dozens of learners, aged 16 to 25 with autism and other learning difficulties, in a department recognised as a regional leader.
Selected from thousands of nominations, Mark is one of just 65 national winners and was presented with his award at South Tyneside College by Coun Iain Malcolm, leader of South Tyneside Council.
In October, he will join fellow Silver Award winners at the annual awards in London, where he willfind out if he has won one of just 12 gold awards - the UK’s ‘Oscars for Teachers’.
He said: “I am shocked and overwhelmed at having my work recognised. It has come as a great surprise to me, and has been made possible by the incredible work of my great team.”
Alison Maynard, principal of South Tyneside College, said Mark’s drive and passion for education and his dedication to support students, is exceptional. He has as infectious enthusiasm for his job and displays a whole-hearted committed to helping learners achieve their full potential.
“He is thoroughly deserving of this award, and I wish him every success in the awards’ final later this year.”
Coun Malcolm said: “It was an absolute privilege to meet Mark and present him with his award. Providing every young person with the best start in life is a core priority for the council, so it is reassuring to know that the borough has such committed teachers like Mark.
“Mark’s achievements make him an outstanding ambassador for South Tyneside.”
Mark and his team have implemented highly effective personalised study programmes and support at the college - centred on a student’s social and emotional skills, independence or employability, which help them build other essential life skills.
The aim is for students to gain learning that develops maximum opportunity to lead independent lives.
They help students develop team work, money management skills and other essential skills.
Information on special needs provision is available by visiting www.stc.ac.uk or calling 0191 427 3500.