I was really honoured to win the School Library Association’s School Librarian of the Year Award for 2005:
Yes, this is real! I went with Kathy Lemaire (Chief Executive of the SLA at the time) and Martin Salter, photographer, to meet the other Anne Robinson at Pinewood Studios on Monday 2nd May 2005. Anne was really kind and gracious as she presented me with the certificate, showing a genuine interest in the job of school librarian. I am now a totally devoted fan!!
This is what I wrote on my Strongest Links website when I won the award:
Heartfelt thanks to everyone involved in the award and in my development as a school librarian (this is where I get to do the Oscar Speech bit but without the tears. No apologies at all for being cheesy!) :
- The School Library Association for creating the award in the first place, for choosing me and giving me such a wonderful day on Monday. I will try hard to live up to your expectations. Cheers Kathy, Alec, Elaine and of course Aidan!
- My parents for their belief in education and for taking me to the library and encouraging me to read from an early age. For my family’s continued support and love.
- All of my teachers who continued to help me discover new and exciting books, particularly Mr Charles at Blean County Primary School, Kent.
- Everyone in Nottinghamshire Education Library Service and the other librarians in the county who helped me develop as a school librarian in the early days. Particularly Fiona Crawford, who over more than 20 years has been my dearest friend.
- The staff and students in my first three schools – Manning, Carlton-le-Willows and Margaret Glen-Bott – I learned so much from you all!
- The great team in Warwickshire Schools Library Service – thanks so much for your support at all times. Also my colleagues working in school libraries across the county.
- The fantastic bunch of committed librarians on SLN and in SLG who have shared their expertise and have helped me so much. I hope that I have given some of this support back to those who have needed it.
- The wonderful staff and students at Nicholas Chamberlaine – you have made me raise my game – none of this would have happened if I had not come to work with you. Particular thanks to all of the staff and students who spoke to the SLA assessors back in November 2004. Thanks to Lesley and Graham for believing in me and nominating me; Kevin and Megan for the video. The LRC Helpers also deserve a very special mention – you are the greatest!
- My friend and assistant Greta – working at this level would not be possible without her support and encouragement. Also Freda Woodliffe who I worked with at Carlton-Le-Willows – I wish you could have seen this.
- Above all, my family – my husband Derek who has supported me totally since we first met. He has helped me to be brave and “act like a teacher”. Also, of course, massive thanks to my two extraordinary boys. This is all for you XXX
You are all the Strongest Links!