Blackwater State High School Principal Rebecca Godfrey was named a 2021 Teaching Award winner on March 19 as part of the Commonwealth Bank Teaching Awards.
Blackwater State High School Principal Rebecca Godfrey was named a 2021 Teaching Award winner on March 19 as part of the Commonwealth Bank Teaching Awards.

Teacher bridges gap between school and local industries

A Central Queensland school principal has been recognised across Australia for her work in bridging the gap between study and the mining industry.

Blackwater State High School Principal Rebecca Godfrey was one of twelve 2021 Commonwealth Bank Teaching Award recipients, shortlisted from more than 400 educators who have been contributing real change to their schools and communities across the nation.

Ms Godfrey was recognised on Friday for her work bridging STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) courses and mining applications, developing an entirely new course that relates to Blackwater’s local industries.

“I hope that our teachers inspire people to know that you can come to rural schools and still advance your career with access to great opportunities,” she said.

“I’ve seen first-hand the difference education makes to children from diverse backgrounds and watched our talented students flourish in supportive environments.

“Being so close to the mining industry here in Blackwater, we’ve adapted our STEM courses to help our students attain the critical, real-world skills that industry has told us they are looking for, such as costing up as a production professional, managing their money and completing tax paperwork.”

Each of the twelve award recipients will receive a $45,000 fellowship including $25,000 to rollout a strategic project in their school, $10,000 towards professional development and a group study tour to high performing schools.

Armed with the Teaching Fellowship, Ms Godfrey will use the grant to prepare more students for work in the STEM industry.

Run in partnership with Australian Schools Plus, the Commonwealth Bank Teaching Awards recognise the contribution teachers and school leaders make, and is the largest national program to acknowledge excellence in education.

Commonwealth Bank group executive, Priscilla Brown, said it had been remarkable to see how the 2021 award recipients still found unique ways to engage their students even in the midst of a global pandemic.

“These inspiring teachers continued to innovate and transform the way they taught their students while making significant improvements to their learning experiences in everything from robotics, to community based learning and job readiness,” she said.

“I would like to congratulate this year’s recipients on their fabulous achievements.”



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