Southport State School
Jen MacNab has gone above and beyond to ensure every child in her preparatory class feels safe and supported at school regardless of their level of ability.
The Southport State School teacher’s care and understanding extended towards Lucas, a young boy in her class with autism, is what led his parents to nominate her for the 2017 QCT Excellence in Teaching Award.
“Jen not only goes out of her way to find ways to help him adapt to the class but also ways that have helped the other children in the class adapt to him,” Lucas’s parents said.
“She sings and dances and smiles and comforts her students throughout her day, and you can often walk past her class and see her just lightly touching a child’s shoulder to let them know she is there.”
Jen made Lucas his very own personalised workstation where he can go when he needs time away from his classmates. She has also set up different designated areas within the classroom for Lucas to sit so he can still listen and learn with the rest of the class.
Recently, Jen jumped at the opportunity to have a behavioural specialist attend her class to help her develop some new strategies to support and nurture Lucas.
His parents were beyond thrilled when they discovered Jen was so enthusiastic to learn more about Lucas and his condition. They were even happier when they heard she had made herself available after hours to have a follow- up meeting with the specialist and had even arranged for some of her teaching colleagues to attend as well.
Jen encourages all the young learners in her care to reach their full potential. Her students are so excited to learn that they rush into her classroom and into their seats each and every morning with big smiles on their faces.
Congratulations Jen on your nomination.
By Claudia Farhart.