It was a day of celebration for Hartlepool’s Jesmond Gardens Primary School as pupils and staff welcomed town MP Mike Hill to mark two achievements.
Mr Hill was invited into the school on a day it recognised the importance of their support staff.
He handed certificates to valued teaching assistants and staff who work behind the scenes as part of the Stars In Our Schools initiative organised by the union UNISON.
And the MP also presented Jesmond Gardens with their new Leading Parent Partnership Award which recognises the school’s commitment to working with parents and the wider school community in the interests of the children’s education.
Around 20 support staff received certificates from Mr Hill during the morning assembly.
Headteacher Philip Pritchard said: “It takes a whole team to make a school a safe and happy place for children to learn.
“Without our teaching assistants and all the support staff, we couldn’t do what we do in school.
“That’s why we really wanted to praise them. Sometimes their work may go unrecognised but we really value everything they do and they are stars in our school.
“Every single person in school contributes to our vision. We are all in it together.”
Meanwhile, Jesmond Garden’s close working with parents and families saw them achieve the national Leading Parents Partnership Award.
Led by Helen Bostock, assistant headteacher for inclusion, they had to demonstrate their commitment and engagement with parents.
Assessors were impressed with the school’s consistent commitment from all staff and their long term approach emphasised by creation of the school’s Inclusion Team.
Chair of Governors Peter Ingham said: “It’s quite special because we have a lot of parent engagement which is brilliant.
“They are a vital link between the school and the community.”
Mr Hill said: “It was a real treat to be invited to look around the School and attend morning assembly; it truly is a warm and welcoming learning environment for children from two years upwards.
“I was also very pleased to hand certificates from UNISON to support staff in recognition of their hard work at the school, and especially pleased to officially hand a national award to parent support advisor Carly Lupton for the excellent engagement the school has with parents and the community.”