National award for teacher at Daventry secondary school

Headteacher Andrew Mackereth and James Dempsey with his award
Headteacher Andrew Mackereth and James Dempsey with his award

The Parker E-ACT Academy in Daventry is celebrating the success of one of its most recently qualified members of staff.

James Dempsey was awarded the title of E-ACT Newly Qualified Teacher of the Year at a gala event in Manchester on Monday, in the presence of headteachers, governors and senior managers from across the UK.

It is always a pleasure to get good news when you are a principal. To receive the news that one of my teachers has received a national award is the best kind of news you can get!

Headteacher Andrew Mackereth

The award adds to the recognition he has already received from the local authority, as James was awarded Outstanding Newly Qualified Teacher by Northamptonshire County Council earlier this year.

James said: “Becoming a teacher has been a dream come true.

“When I was in the initial training phase of my career there was a point when I questioned if it was the right choice for me. However, after joining The Parker, with the support of outstanding mentors and colleagues, and with the privilege of working with incredible students, I have been fortunate enough to develop and progress and help them achieve beyond their own expectations.”

James’ potential has already been recognised by the school with his recent appointment as Head of Austen House, preparing students for their exams and the annual sports day.

From day one, James impressed both staff and students with his enthusiasm and dedication. James’ mentor, Helen Bloomer, said: “I have worked with many trainees over the years and few have demonstrated the level of commitment and willingness to learn as James has done. His development has been extraordinary and I am immensely proud.”

Molly Barge, one of James’ current students in Year 11, said “Mr Dempsey has such high expectations and really makes me work hard.”

Headteacher Andrew Mackereth said it was an important time in the school’s progress to achieve recognition for its hard-working staff.

He said: “It is always a pleasure to get good news when you are a principal. To receive the news that one of my teachers has received a national award is the best kind of news you can get!

“James is a relatively inexperienced teacher and yet he contributes so much to The Parker already. It is wonderful to have colleagues that take pride in their work and devote themselves to making sure our students make as much progress as possible through really good teaching, marking and a consistently balanced attitude.

“When so much of the publicity about the school is negative, it is brilliant that one of my many outstanding colleagues is getting the recognition they deserve.”

In terms of James’ impact on the rest of the staff and students at Parker, Mr Mackereth added : “He is a very modest young man, so you won’t catch him boasting, but his smile is a little broader at the moment, and his colleagues are smiling equally broadly. They share a sense of pride in all that he has accomplished.”

James is already putting his talents to good effect by becoming the latest of the academy’s learning coaches supporting all teachers to reflect on how they do their job and be the best they can be.

James is not alone in achieving regional and national success at The Parker Academy, as already this year the academy special educational needs coordinator (SENCO), Adam Drake was nominated as Lead SENCO for Northamptonshire while Dave Hill received a Real Rugby Heroes award from the RFU.

As a spin-off from the success of The Parker at developing and nurturing teaching talent, a recruitment fair has been organised for the Thursday May 14 between 5pm and 7pm for people interested in joining the school or considering a career in teaching. For further details email j.gatley@theparker.org.uk.