Could Mrs Allen be headteacher of the year?

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An “inspirational” teacher from Crofton is in the running for a top national award after glowing praise from a panel of judges.

Julie Allen, who taught at schools in Horbury and Normanton, has reached the final of the Pearson UK Teaching Awards.

Mrs Allen, now head of Birkwood Primary School in Barnsley, progressed to the final after winning the title of Headteacher of the Year in a Primary School.

Judges said: “Julie is a truly inspirational headteacher.

“Her school serves an area that faces its share of challenges, yet despite these, the school is a thriving community with a wide range of learning experiences available to all the children.

“She is a superb professional who commands the total respect of the whole school community.”

Mrs Allen previously taught at Horbury St Peter’s CE Junior School and St John the Baptist Catholic Primary in Normanton.

She attended an event on July 2 at the House of Commons hosted by Robert Halfon MP to honour regional winners from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in the contest.

The 66 winning teachers were shortlisted from more than 24,000 nominations from pupils, parents and colleagues.

Mrs Allen will join fellow winners at the UK Pearson Teaching Awards Ceremony held London on October 20, an event filmed by the BBC.

Rod Bristow, President of Pearson UK, said: “We want to recognise and support inspirational teachers for their commitment to teaching and learning and improving the life chances of the next generation.

“It’s really important that we create opportunities to say thank you. The Pearson Teaching Awards champion exceptional teaching professionals across the UK.

“All young people deserve the very best chance to make progress in their lives through education and great teachers make this happen.”