A local teacher in Brent has received a national award for Teacher of the Year at the Pearson Teaching Awards 2016.
When Mrs Jashu Vekaria arrived at Uxendon Manor Primary School, the combined percentage of children who achieved Level 4+ in reading, writing and maths at the end of Key Stage 2 was 64%. After her first year the percentage rose to 76%, it then increased further to 88% and then rose to 93%.
However, Mrs Vekaria's contribution to the school extends beyond great results. On a recent school trip, she went out of her way to arrange for a child with Special Educational Needs to attend. This meant giving up her own accommodation space so that the young person and their parent could stay in comfort. Mrs Vekaria spent two nights in a small log cabin with no electric lighting and no heating in a remote part of the premises.
The good news regarding the award was revealed to Mrs Vekaria by professional dancer, Brendan Cole who made a surprise appearance at the school to present her with the award in front of her chess class.
Jon Parry, Headteacher at Uxendon Manor Primary School, said:
"Jashu is an exceptional teacher who really does go the extra mile for the children of Uxendon Manor. She has made a tremendous impact on our school and the local community and thoroughly deserves this recognition.
"She's not afraid or reluctant to tackle any task, from delivering fantastic results and giving our pupils one-on-one tailored help, to organising and taking lunch time and after school clubs. I've even seen her hoovering the school at times!"
A pupil of Mrs Vekaria's, said:
"I think I can do anything now because I am more confident than I used to be. I love Maths because Mrs Vekaria makes it fun and I don't have time to be silly. If I get stuck, she always explains in a different way and helps me. Now I can help other children. She is very kind and the best teacher in the world."
Cllr Wilhelmina Mitchell Murray, Brent Council's Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said:
"Mrs Vekaria is an absolute star! She really does go above and beyond for the children in her care and I am not surprised that she ended up winning this award.
"As a Council, we are committed to providing the very best education for our children and young people in Brent and we are very lucky to have Mrs Vekaria working at one of our local schools."