School-Home Support Practitioner awarded top gong for work with families at East London school
Katy-Anne Waite has been crowned Practitioner of the Year by the School-Home Support charity for her work with families at Mayesbrook Park School in Dagenham.
The charity’s coveted annual award celebrates the practitioner who has made a significant contribution to leading the charity’s mission of supporting children to be in school, ready to learn, whatever it takes. It’s named the Terry Farrell Practitioner of the Year Award in memory of the late inspirational co-founder of School-Home Support.
Despite the challenges presented by the pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns, Katy-Anne worked hard to maintain contact with families and young people to meet their needs remotely.
One of her award nominations, written by a colleague, reads: 'your commitment, dedication and passion for changing the lives of the young people you work with is so visible in every element of work you do, not only the direct work but your contribution strategically too.'
'Your attendance at meetings with funders, influencers and partners is always outstanding, and the training you deliver to colleagues comes with nothing but the highest praise.'
'I am very proud and humbled to be your colleague, Katy and words cannot express the gratitude for what you do.'
'In life, you meet some very "good" people, those that really genuinely care for others and for social justice and Katy, you are one of them.'
It's not the first time that Katy-Anne's work has been in the spotlight. The practitioner appeared on Sky News and in Hello magazine earlier this year to promote School-Home Support and the charity's work with patron Lady Sophie Windsor.
On learning of Katy-Anne’s award, Annie Blackmore, Executive Headteacher of Mayesbrook Park School at the time, said: "This award is so well-deserved.
"Building trust with families is at the heart of our success, and Katy has worked tirelessly through a challenging year to offer help and support to our Mayesbrook Park community.
"We are so lucky to have her on the team!"
As well as inspiring the young people she works with to engage in education, Katy-Anne has worked to continue her own studies and achieved her Level 5 Diploma in Education & Training in March this year.
On what it feels like to win the award, Katy-Anne said: "It means everything to win this award.
"You don't go into a job like this for the recognition or credit, but hearing the nominations from my colleagues was very rewarding.
"It's heart-warming to have my work acknowledged like this and gives me even more motivation to carry on going the extra mile.
"I love seeing the impact I've had on the lives of children, young people and their families in my own borough.
"I'm proud to be a resident of Barking and Dagenham and excited to be a part of all the positive changes that are happening."
Councillor Carpenter, Cabinet Member for Educational Attainment and School Improvement, said:
“I’d like to thank Katy-Anne for her hard work at Mayesbrook Park School.
“This is a great accolade for her, the school and Barking and Dagenham.
“I am very proud of her success.”
Nine in ten schools in Barking and Dagenham are rated 'Good' or 'Outstanding' by Ofsted. Parents wishing to find the most recent Ofsted inspection report for their child's school can visit the Ofsted website.