TEACHERS were a class above the rest as they took part in the inaugural Daily Gazette and Essex County Standard Education Awards.

The awards have been established to celebrate the achievements of educationalists and support staff.


More than 400 entries were submitted which were scrutinised by a panel of judges made up former headmaster at the Colchester Royal Grammar School Ken Jenkinson, Lucy Murray from the University of Essex, Nardeep Sharma, executive head teacher at Colne Community School and College in Brightlingsea, and James Wills, the editor of the Gazette and Essex County Standard.

And the finalists enjoyed a glitzy awards evening at the Weston Homes Community Stadium presented by award winning magician Michael J Fitch and the Gazette and Essex County Standard Entertainment reporter Neil D'Arcy Jones.



The award for lifetime achievement went to Gary Smith, the inspirational head teacher of Market Field School in Elmstead Market.

He was honoured for his dedication to the students and their families and for encouraging every child to reach their potential.



Ken Jenkinson, the former head of Colchester Royal Grammar School who retired earlier this year, won the award for outstanding achievement.

Mr Jenkinson was recognised not only for the school's outstanding examination results but for his kind but firm leadership.

For the full results and more pictures, see Tuesday's Gazette and Friday's Essex County Standard.