(I) lied in my last blog update, because I said that we were only shortlisted in three categories, this wasn't strictly true because some of my students had also nominated me in the Teacher of the Year category. With our four shortlisted spots, we had eight tickets and so brought a selection of staff, volunteers and students (we kept it secret until the last minute from the students, we thought they might appreciate the surprise). As it turned out, I think that we were the only school to take students with us - it was important to us that they were there, not for their nomination, but for the fact that they put in so much hard work and dedication to making the farm a success. I always tell visitors to the farm about how the students run it - from coming in at weekends or on holidays to clean and feed the animals, to bringing me coffee in the morning after I've been in school all night during lambing, to leading our excellent primary school visits.
It isn't often that some of us are seen in suits or dresses, usually opting for overalls, wellies and muddy smudges on our faces - but a change is as good as a rest right? I'm sure you'll agree that the students looked very smart and some of the farmers turned out alright as well!
Scrubbing up well!
We were treated to some fantastic food, excellent entertainment and cracking company during the night - our tablemates were Rainford C of E Primary and we gave them an extra special big cheer when they won the Spirit of Enterprise Award.
Before long, it was time for our awards to come up and we thought that we were in with a good chance of scooping something this year following our hard work with the entries. The first award we were up in was the Career Aspiration Award to which we were runners up to the very worthy Calderstones School in Liverpool.
The next two awards we were up for were the Innovation in Education and Outstanding Teaching of Life Skills for which we got an honourable mention but unfortunately no award. The students were having a great time though, and kept reminding me that all hopes were on me. No pressure then!
So up came the Teacher of the Year award and the shortlisted nominees had a brief summary of why they were nominated - it was getting quite hot in there eh?
'And the runner up is Beth Harris from Archbishop Temple School'
Lots of clapping, well done Beth! I noticed how impressive the floor is in the Anglican Cathedral, how the wax was dripping all over the place from the big candlestands - the drycleaning bill must be pricey.
I don't really remember the next bit that well, just that the red carpet was really long and there was a lot of people looking at me. Then the students were legging it up behind me to join me on stage.
The longest red carpet in the history of life
I was truly humbled by an excellent group of students, I'm glad I could share the moment with them.
A big well done to all the teachers that were nominated and shortlisted, on what was a fantastic night for education in the North West!
See you next year!