The David Ross Education Trust

David Ross Education Trust schools create a rich and exciting learning environment that inspires students to become their confident academic best.

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Quay Academy

Our school's friendly, communal atmosphere was noted by Ofsted with them describing us as, 'a happy and inclusive school where pupils behave well and develop strong relationships'.

Winners of the David Ross Education Trust Inspiration Awards for Teaching Excellence 2018 announced

The winners of the inaugural David Ross Education Trust Inspiration Awards for Teaching Excellence were announced this week at an awards ceremony sponsored by Simply Education. 

The gala dinner, held at the Trust’s Northampton secondary school, Malcolm Arnold Academy, celebrated the outstanding work of exceptional teachers, teaching assistants and non-teaching staff across the Trust’s 34 academies. 

The event was kindly funded by sponsors’ donations, with all profits going to the Trust’s Inspiration Fund. The Inspiration Fund is used to create thousands of incredible opportunities for the Trust’s 12,000 students, to help them develop their passions and discover their talents. 

Special guests included Sir Hugh Robertson, Chair of the British Olympic Association, the event’s keynote speaker.

Rowena Hackwood, Chief Executive Officer at the David Ross Education Trust, said: “At the David Ross Education Trust, we encourage all of our colleagues to innovate in the pursuit of delivering excellent outcomes for our students. 

“Our judging panel saw so many high-quality entries for these awards, and we couldn’t help but be impressed by the excellence shown from our teachers and colleagues across the Trust.  Congratulations to all of our winners for their richly deserved awards.”


Inspiration Fund Award for the Arts, Dance and Drama – Endike Academy, Hull

Endike Academy has shown incredible commitment to embedding cultural activities into school life. The primary school has fully embraced all that the Trust’s enrichment programme has to offer, enabling pupils to develop their creative and artistic talents. 

Inspiration Fund Award for Music, sponsored by Navigate – Malcolm Arnold Academy, Northampton

Music is an integral part of everyday school life at Malcolm Arnold Academy. The secondary school provides opportunities for all students to take part in music making, both academically and through co-curricular programmes, as well as an extensive and varied performance schedule both locally and nationally.

Inspiration Fund Award for Sport – Lodge Park Academy, Corby

Lodge Park Academy uses sport to help engage students and boost academic performance and attendance. It has an extensive sports offer, from health and wellbeing programmes to sporting initiatives that help students handle exam pressure and develop resilience. 

Students at Lodge Park regularly participate in sporting competitions, both locally and across the Trust, and the academy uses sport to build engagement with local primary schools.

Outstanding Academy Fundraising for the Inspiration Fund Award, sponsored by the David Ross Foundation – King Edward VI Academy, Spilsby

The judges were impressed with King Edward VI Academy’s year-round commitment to fundraising and the variety of fundraising activities, from cake bakes and summer fayres to raffles and sponsored events. 

Staff at King Edward VI Academy have demonstrated innovative approaches to fundraising whilst engaging students, teachers, staff, parents and the wider community. 

Primary Academy Teaching Assistant of the Year Award – Sarah Kift, Wold Academy, Hull

Sarah has an exceptional ability to quickly and effectively get to know pupils at Wold Academy. She has fostered strong, nurturing relationships with pupils and their parents, and has supported pupils to make significant progress in their learning. 

Secondary Teaching Assistant of the Year Award – Sue Wells, Barnes Wallis Academy, Tattershall

Sue actively engages and collaborates with teachers, parents and other professionals in supporting students’ learning development, and she has shown a continuing commitment to the learning goals of her students and the ethos and values of her school. 

Sue regularly goes above and beyond her role, and her passion for teaching is not only seen in her planning but through the respect her students and colleagues at Barnes Wallis Academy have for her. 

Non Teaching Employee of the Year Award – Shane Ward, Head of Sports Enrichment

Shane’s commitment to the David Ross Education Trust has been described as ‘legendary’ by the judging panel. He sets an outstanding example for others and is always looking for new ways to make life at school even more rewarding for students, including once in a lifetime opportunities to excel. 

New Teacher of the Year Award, sponsored by Sylvester Keal – Sam Bradbury, Malcolm Arnold Academy, Northampton

Sam impressed the judges with her enthusiasm and professionalism which is reflected in her engaging teaching style and the exceptional results she achieves in the classroom.

Primary Academy Teacher of the Year Award, sponsored by Stone King – J.D. Hives, Kings Heath Primary Academy, Northampton 

J.D has inspired others through her revolutionary way of teaching music at Kings Heath Primary Academy. She is someone that her pupils look up to and aspire to be.

Key Stage 2 SATs results have shown great improvement and pupils’ concentration, memory and enjoyment of school have increased dramatically.

Secondary Academy Teacher of the Year Award, sponsored by Simply Education – Tessa Holland, Humberston Academy, Grimsby 

Tessa strives for excellence and is consistently hard working. She is an inspiration to others and a fantastic role model for young people. 

She plans excellent resources, uses her expertise to support other academies and gives up her lunchtimes to help students with educational intervention strategies. 

Outstanding Teacher in Special Education Award – Kate Bishop, Eresby School, Spilsby

Kate continually adapts her skills to meet the needs of her pupils, accommodating all their individual educational and care requirements. 

She constantly searches for innovative ideas and approaches, which she shares with the whole school teaching staff. As a result, her pupils have flourished and achieved their expected targets, often exceeding them with exceptional results. 

Outstanding Use of Technology Award, sponsored by Exa Education – Scott Thomas, Havelock Academy, Grimsby 

Scott impressed the judges with his willingness to spend extra time on trying new ideas and developing technology within the classroom. 

He constantly finds new approaches to using technology in a way that makes his lessons fun and engaging. Scott is a great team player too, who always shares ideas and has supported colleagues with their use of technology. 

Headteacher of the Year Award, sponsored by PS Connect – Kate Ranner, Ainthorpe Primary School, Hull

Kate’s vision, ability and guidance has seen performance improve significantly at Ainthorpe Primary School. Pupils’ attitudes to learning have been transformed, leading to amazing improvements at the primary school. 

Primary Academy of the Year Award, sponsored by European Electronique – Greenfields Primary School, Kettering

The judges had a difficult decision to make in this category, with all nominees demonstrating remarkable learning outcomes and successful community engagement. 

However, Greenfields Primary School was crowned Primary Academy of the Year in recognition of its incredible Key Stage 2 results and being amongst the top 1% of primary schools in the country for their pupil progress this year. 

Secondary Academy of the Year Award, sponsored by Stem Architects – Barnes Wallis Academy,  Tattershall

Barnes Wallis Academy has a clear set of strong community values underpinning the school’s ethos.Its transformation has been built on excellent relationships with pupils and parents, which contribute significantly to the positive atmosphere in the classroom and around the school. Pupils and staff are actively engaged in volunteering in the community, helping to make this academy the school of choice in the locality.

Parjeet Dhillon, Northamptonshire & Leicestershire Branch Manager of Simply Education, headline sponsor of the event, said: “Having worked closely with the David Ross Education Trust, we share their vision of providing every student with a world-class education. Simply Education is delighted to sponsor an event which honours the achievements of passionate and hard-working individuals within the education industry.”