Dubbed the “Oscars for Teachers”, Claire Langham, who works at Cantrell Primary and Nursery School, in Bulwell, is the winner of the Silver Teaching Award in the national Pearson Teaching Awards 2016.

Selected from thousands of nominations, Claire’s surprise award celebration is one of 55 which will be taking place in schools and colleges across England, Ireland and Wales on Thank A Teacher Day, 17 June 2016, when the prestigious accolades will be presented to outstanding local heroes of education.

Claire was nominated by a parent at the school for going above and beyond her classroom job. When Claire started working with her class they suffered a saddening bereavement, and she helped and supported the children to overcome their grief. More recently, Claire has offered help and support to a local family going through a very difficult time.

The Pearson Teaching Awards are an annual celebration of exceptional teachers and teaching. Founded in 1999 by Lord Puttnam, they recognise the life-changing impact of an inspirational teacher on the lives of the young people they teach.

Claire, who has been with Cantrell School for 18 years and has been with the same class for the past two years said: “When I first found out I didn’t believe it. It was a bit of a shock because you just do your job and get on with it. You don’t realise how much you mean to the parents until something like this happens.”

Head Teacher Debbie Weaver said: “We are all thrilled that Claire’s hard work has been recognised. Through her outstanding professionalism and great personal charm, she has become a much-loved and respected member of the school.

“Claire and I joined Cantrell together 18 years ago as newly-qualified teachers and her dream was always to be a class teacher. She is an excellent primary school educator and we are lucky to have her within our school.

“She has made such progress with her children and has a great track record for teaching and learning. Claire has had an impact on the lives of the children that goes way beyond the classroom. She is so humble and everyone has so much respect for her. Not only does she have a great relationship with staff, she is loved by everyone in the local community.”

Councillor Sam Webster, Portfolio Holder for Education, Employment and Skills at Nottingham City Council, said: “As a city we should all be incredibly proud of Claire for winning this award. Her hard work, dedication and love for her job is amazing to see. She really is a perfect example of how teaching can change the lives of children. We are privileged and honoured to have such an inspirational teacher here in the city.

“Inspirational teachers have the biggest impact on a child’s education so it’s vital to recognise and celebrate their commitment to teaching and learning, and improving the life chances of the next generation.”

Claire, who is being honoured in the category, Teacher Of The Year In A Primary School, now has a chance to go one better and be awarded a gold award for her work in teaching. She will join fellow Silver Award winners at the UK final of the Teaching Awards to be held at a glittering celebration in London’s Guildhall on 23rd October, where 10 Silver Award winners will receive a Gold Plato Award.

The 2016 ceremony, entitled “Britain’s Classroom Heroes”, will be filmed and broadcast by the BBC as a showcase of excellence in education.