Hartlepool teacher meets the Prime Minister at Downing Street reception

Hartlepool teacher Christine Palmer.Hartlepool teacher Christine Palmer.
Hartlepool teacher Christine Palmer.
A Hartlepool teacher joined a reception with the Prime Minister in London.

Town teacher Christine Palmer was among one hundred teachers invited to take part in the Downing Street event.

The West Park Primary School staff member was one of the teachers who met with Theresa May and Education Secretary, Damian Hind, to celebrate their hard work, talent and commitment to giving every child an excellent education.

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Prime Minister Theresa May hosting a teachers' reception at 10 Downing Street.Prime Minister Theresa May hosting a teachers' reception at 10 Downing Street.
Prime Minister Theresa May hosting a teachers' reception at 10 Downing Street.

Both paid tribute to the hard work and dedication of the profession which, alongside the Government’s bold reforms, have helped to raise standards – with 1.9 million more children now in good or outstanding schools than in 2010.

There are 15,500 more teachers than in 2010 and the quality of new entrants into the teaching profession is at an all-time high, with almost a fifth of new teachers starting this year holding a first-class degree.

Mrs May said: “We know that the success of every young person, in whatever they go on to do in life, is shaped by the education they receive at school.

“That’s why I was delighted to welcome over a hundred teachers from across the country to Downing Street to celebrate their achievements and to thank them for the vital work they do day-in and day-out.

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“We now have nearly two million more children being taught in schools that are good or outstanding compared with 2010, we’ve raised teacher numbers to record levels and we’re working with the profession on a new strategy to drive recruitment and boost retention.

Teachers are key to making Britain the great meritocracy it can and should be, and I am committed to working with them so that every child has the best possible start in life.”

Mr Hind added: “Whenever I ask people about what they most remember from school, they always talk about the teacher who inspired them. There are no great schools without great teachers and the reception was a small recognition of the incredible dedication and hard work we see day in, day out, across the teaching profession.

“We now have the most remarkably talented generation of teachers, and it was a pleasure to recognise the commitment and hard work of just some of the 457,000 teachers we have working in classrooms across the country to raise standards for pupils.”

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The Education Secretary has made it his top priority to ensure teaching remains an attractive and fulfilling profession.

Earlier this month, in a speech at the National Association of Head Teachers’ annual conference, he set out plans to boost early career support and development for teachers and pledged to introduce more flexible working practices that will put the profession on a par with other industries, including a £5million fund to help experienced teachers take a sabbatical.

The speech also set out plans for a recruitment and retention strategy to attract and keep the brightest and best in teachers in classrooms.