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Diocese of Toowoomba Catholic Schools

Toowoomba Catholic Schools Excellence Awards

These awards are to recognise those members of the TCS community who lead, create and/or provide the support needed to create exemplary places of learning where every student experiences academic success and comes to know and experience the loving presence of Jesus.

They may be teachers, school leaders, work in an office or volunteer their time. The awards are in 10 categories across the three areas, shown below.

Excellence in teaching and learning

Category 1 - Excellence in teaching and learning: early career teacher (0-3 years of teaching experience)

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • successfully implements evidence-based high impact teaching strategies which affirm the dignity and potential of each student 
  • ensures classroom practice is informed by planning for personalised learning and based on formative and diagnostic assessment of student skills, knowledge and understanding 
  • ensures the choice of content and pedagogy is responsive to the cultural backgrounds and life experiences of students and challenges students to think deeply about the world and their place in it 

Category 2 - Excellence in teaching and learning: primary expert teacher

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • is an acknowledged expert classroom practitioner in evidence-based, high impact strategies which affirm the dignity and potential of all students and readily shares this expertise across classrooms 
  • ensures classroom practice is supported by planning for personalised learning and based on formative and diagnostic assessment of student skills, knowledge and understanding 
  • ensures the choice of content and pedagogy is responsive to the cultural backgrounds and life experiences of students and challenges students to think deeply about the world and their place in it 

Category 3 - Excellence in teaching and learning: secondary expert teacher

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • is an acknowledged expert classroom practitioner in evidence-based, high impact strategies which affirm the dignity and potential of all students and readily shares this expertise across classrooms 
  • ensures classroom practice is supported by planning for personalised learning and based on formative and diagnostic assessment of student skills, knowledge and understanding 
  • ensures the choice of content and pedagogy is responsive to the cultural backgrounds and life experiences of students and challenges students to think deeply about the world and their place in it 

Category 4 - Excellence in teaching and learning: eLearning

This award recognises an individual or team that has built capacity and demonstrated exemplary classroom practice through eLearning, leading to enhanced student outcomes. Nominations are to address the following criteria and would include examples of how the nominee/s has demonstrated excellence in this area as evidenced in the criteria below. 

  • participated in important school-wide decisions about eLearning and actively engaged in modelling exemplary practice 
  • regularly reviewed and evaluated evidence-based eLearning strategies that improve student learning outcomes and led the implementation of these as school-wide practice 
  • integrated system priorities and initiatives into action with clear strategies, goals and measures of impact 

Excellence in leadership

Category 1 – School leadership (inclusive of educative and religious leadership)

This award recognises a school or Toowoomba Catholic Schools Office individual or team who/that has demonstrated high quality leadership focussed on creating exemplary places of learning where every student experiences academic success and comes to know and experience the loving presence of Jesus.

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • leads the development, implementation and review of evidence-based teaching and learning strategies that have improved student learning outcomes in and across schools/colleges
  • provides leadership for Catholic identity and the ethos and charism of the school community, integrating hope-filled beliefs and values into all facets of school life and learning
  • creates a positive culture of challenge and support

Category 2 - Middle leadership

This award recognises an individual or team who/that has demonstrated high quality middle leadership focussed on creating exemplary places of learning where every student experiences academic success and comes to know and experience the loving presence of Jesus.

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • provides high quality leadership, expertise and coordination in their specific area of delegated responsibility
  • is proactive in their pastoral care of staff
  • emphasises the centrality of teaching and learning in the life and work of the school

Category 3 - Emerging leader

This award recognises an individual who is not in a formal leadership position and has demonstrated a willingness to contribute beyond their role to lead a school improvement initiative focussed on creating exemplary places of learning where every student experiences academic success and comes to know and experience the loving presence of Jesus.

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • identified and lead a school improvement project that has improved student learning outcomes
  • used data and educational research to inform and enhance practice
  • engaged others and fostered relationships that inspired action and growth in students, colleagues, parents and the community

Excellence in education support

Category 1 - Teaching and learning support

This award recognises an individual or team who/that work with teaching staff to create exemplary places of learning where every student experiences academic success and comes to know and experience the loving presence of Jesus. The types of role that this award recognises include teacher aides, school counsellors, Occupational Therapists, Education Officers.

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • supports the implementation of engaging and effective learning that puts students first and unleashes their potential
  • looks for and uses innovative ideas to respond to the needs of students
  • demonstrates a commitment to learning, collaboration and professionalism in all interactions with members of the school/college community

Category 2 - Administration, finance and facilities support

This award recognises an individual or team who/that works in support roles to create exemplary places of learning where every student experiences academic success and comes to know and experience the loving presence of Jesus. The types of role that this award recognises include cleaners, grounds people, administration officers, HR officers, accountants, business managers, IT technicians.

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • provides high quality leadership, service or support to a school/college or schools/colleges in their area of responsibility
  • looks for and uses innovative solutions relevant to their role and responsibilities
  • engages with others and fosters relationships that inspire action and growth

Category 3 - Volunteer support in a school setting

This award recognises an individual or team who/that have given their time to support a school or college and this volunteering has contributed to creating exemplary places of learning where every student experiences academic success and comes to know and experience the loving presence of Jesus. The types of roles that this award recognises include those who volunteer to work in classrooms, to maintain school facilities, to engage other parents.

Nominations are to address the following criteria and must include examples of how the nominee has demonstrated excellence in this area by providing specific examples and evidence.

  • looks for and implements innovative and new solutions to support the school or college to achieve its goals
  • works with others and fosters relationships that inspire action and growth
  • focusses on the 'common good'

How to nominate 

 Nominations for the 2022 awards will open in March 2021.

 2021 finalists and recipients

Excellence in teaching and learning

Early Career Teacher
Finalists
Monica Conway – St Saviour’s Primary School, Toowoomba
Taylor Morrison – St Mary’s School, Charleville

Recipient
Jade Manteit – Our Lady of the Southern Cross College, Dalby

Primary Expert Teacher
Finalists
Sarah Benvenuti – St Thomas More’s Primary School, Toowoomba
Shari Pauli – St Mary’s College, Toowoomba

Recipient
Johanna Campbell – St Joseph’s School, Stanthorpe

Secondary Expert Teacher
Finalists
Greg Convery – Good Samaritan College, Toowoomba
Maree Harman – St Joseph’s College, Toowoomba

Recipient
Tammy Banks – St Mary’s College, Toowoomba

eLearning
Finalists
Leah Dempster – St Mary’s College, Toowoomba
Renee Richardson – St Joseph’s School, Chinchilla

Recipient
Rachel Harlen – St Saviour’s Primary School, Toowoomba

Excellence in leadership

Emerging leader
Finalist
Kirstie Andrews – St Joseph’s College, Toowoomba

Recipient

Kellie Pritchard - Mater Dei Primary School, Toowoomba

Middle leadership
Finalists
Angela Martlew – Mater Dei Primary School, Toowoomba
Emily Whiting – St Joseph’s College, Toowoomba
Leisa Radley – Mary MacKillop Catholic College, Highfields

Recipient
Greg Leathart – St Saviour’s College, Toowoomba

School leadership
Finalists
Executive Leadership Team of St Joseph’s College, Toowoomba
Luke Barrett – St Monica’s School, Oakey

Recipient
Kort Goodman – St Joseph’s College, Toowoomba

Excellence in education support

Teaching and learning support
Finalists
Camille Madden – Mater Dei Primary School, Toowoomba
Melinda Stone – Toowoomba Catholic Schools Office
Renee Hunter – St Saviour’s College, Toowoomba

Recipient
Joanne Bradford – Our Lady of the Southern Cross College, Dalby


Administration, finance and facilities support
Finalists
Caain Miller – St Mary’s College, Toowoomba
Debbie Menkins – Sacred Heart Primary School, Toowoomba

Recipient
Marita Day – Good Samaritan College, Toowoomba

Volunteer support
Finalist
Kay Jackson – Sacred Heart Primary School, Toowoomba

Recipient
Katie Mills – Mater Dei Primary School, Toowoomba