The amazing effort of an apprentice at the Dewsbury School made famous in Channel 4’s ‘Educating Yorkshire’ documentary has earned an award from Rathbone Training during National Apprenticeship Week.
Ben Stephenson, 20, who is studying a Level 2 Teaching Assistant Qualification at Thornhill Community Academy, was presented with a Rathbone Training National Apprenticeship Week Learner Award for the dedication and teamwork he has shown whilst working at the school.
"I was shocked when I found out I had won the award but really pleased. I am grateful for the support I have had from my colleagues in school," said Ben.
When Ben successfully applied for his apprenticeship he was living in France and knew that he had to move back to England on his own whilst his family were still in France. At first he found it hard living away from home and most of all not being able to see his family for months on end. However, after a year living away from home, he is now settled and enjoying his new role.
Ben has been supported and worked alongside staff in the Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) department supporting the students during their daily school routine. Ben has also worked in the Provision unit with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) students and has been given the responsibility of mentoring two students with behavioural issues.
He is also currently making a big contribution helping out with extra-curricular activities in French, mainly helping the year 11’s with their upcoming exams in French.
Ben’s supervisor Caroline said: “Ben he has gone over and above his role. At the moment he is working 1 to 1 with a student in school, meeting his daily needs. He is a very challenging student. Ben loves the buzz! He is a great team player.”
Ben’s long term career goal is to be a French teacher and his apprenticeship has allowed him to gain hands on experience, whilst working alongside experienced members of staff. As well as gaining a Level 2 Teaching Assistant Qualification from his Apprenticeship, he will also gain a functional skills qualifications in English, maths and ICT.
“Ben has succeeded by making a positive impact on the students he works with, by being there for them day in, day out and meeting the daily challenges of a supporting role. I’m absolutely delighted he has won this award, he thoroughly deserves it,” said Lucy Leeming, Ben’s tutor at Rathbone Training, who nominated him for the award.
Photo caption: Ron Morgan from Rathbone Training is accompanied by Caroline Holland and Sam Cabourn who work in the SEND department at Thornhill Community Academy and act as Ben's supervisors to present Ben with this award.