Clayhall history teacher nominated for national award

Amara Copsey, who teaches history at Caterham High School, has been nominated for the best new teacher at the TES awards. 

Amara Copsey, who teaches history at Caterham High School, has been nominated for best new teacher at the TES Awards. - Credit: Nick Howe

A teacher in Clayhall has beaten thousands of hopefuls to be shortlisted for a national award less than two years into her career.

Amara Copsey, 23, who teaches history at Caterham High School, has been nominated for best new teacher at the TES Awards.

She has created whole school projects to promote and celebrate diversity.

This included creating tutor activities and assembly presentations on the global Black Lives Matter protests, Black History Month and International Women’s Day.

Amara said: “I was aware I had been nominated a few weeks ago but, because I am so focused on being present while teaching and the commitments that come with this career, I hadn't thought about it since then.

“When I found out that I had been shortlisted I have to admit to feeling a little bit overwhelmed."

Amara said she felt humbled to be nominated.

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“As a history teacher I talk to students a lot about the areas of history and society they are interested in, I want them to feel heard and listened to.

“I used the feedback I received to create assemblies and form sessions that I know they will be engaged with.

"I feel like this makes them feel like their concerns are important to us.

“I am really proud to have been nominated, not just for myself but for the school and also for our students.”

Amara, who has already been promoted to head of house at the school, made an eight-person shortlist for the award and beat thousands of entries from across the country.

She is part of the Teach First programme, which places graduates from top universities in teaching posts.

Headteacher Belinda Chapple said: “We are extremely proud that one of our many excellent young teachers at this school has been nominated for this highly coveted national award.

“Amara is a natural teacher who has already made significant contributions in many areas of school life."

The winners will be announced in a virtual ceremony on Friday, June 25.

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