Teacher of the Year: Debbie Baker
TWO parents have nominated Amherst Primary School teaching assistant Debbie Baker for continually being an inspiration during lockdown.
Nominated for the HSBC-sponsored Teacher of the Year award, Ms Baker, who works as part of ‘The Base’, the school’s Communication and Autism Support Service for children who have an autism spectrum diagnosis, was said to always go ‘over and beyond’ her role.
Parent Karen Dyke, whose son goes to the school, said the teaching assistant had sent a video message with a joke each day during the coronavirus lockdown, as well as a story each evening for the children unable to attend.
‘She delivered a comfort blanket to The Base children, too, which was lovely,’ she said.
‘She kept us all laughing throughout an unsettling time.
‘All the Base teachers were amazing, but Debbie went over and beyond and this is one way to thank her.’
Fellow parent Caroline Hards, whose 10-year-old son goes to the school, added that Ms Baker was loved by all the children.
‘During lockdown she would post daily joke videos in fancy dress and it made the children’s day to see a familiar face, especially to children with autism,’ she said.
‘She is an inspiration and the children love her.
‘She also co-ordinates lots of charitable work – she truly is deserving of this award.’