Hillcrest Academies, which is made up of Hillcrest Early Years Academy and Hillcrest at GAPA, have been shortlisted in two categories, Employer of the Year and Early Years Setting of the Year at this year’s Times Educational Supplement Education Awards.
Executive Principal, Julie Macdonald, said: “We feel very honoured to be shortlisted for the Times Educational Supplement Education awards this year.
“These awards are open to all schools and academies and they select the top eight to be the shortlist.
“It is fantastic to be in that top eight schools in the country and to be recognised for all the hard work that our staff put in over and above what is required of them so our pupils get wonderful learning experiences.”
“Our Hillcrest philosophy has always been that our employees should be happy at work as this translates directly as to what is delivered in the classrooms.
“We had to put together examples of how we look after and retain our staff such as staff reward scheme where you have a duvet day per term which can they can use how the staff member chooses.
“We have weekly staff meetings which start with team sports such as trolley hockey, wheelchair basketball, archery, fencing. Lacrosse and even zorbing.
“We celebrate those special birthdays that end in a 0. We have scavenger hunts, team building nights, fish and chip supper night and all this makes the staff feel valued and make this a fun place to come and work.
“We believe a staff who play together, stay together.
“Our staff are our family along with our pupils and it is this family atmosphere along with the quirky staff bonding which makes life at Hillcrest unique.
Tes Editor, Ann Mroz, said: “It is wonderful to see such innovative ideas and best practice emerging from our schools and teachers, despite the current squeeze on funding.
“We have had a record year for the entries and the standard was the best so far, all those shortlisted should be very proud.”
The winners will be revealed at the gala awards evening at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London on June 22.
Julie said: “We are very excited and hope to bring a trophy back to Hillcrest and Gainsborough. We have put the town of Gainsborough in the spotlight by being shortlisted and hope that we spread the message when in London to the country that great things are happening in Gainsborough.”