Photo by Hannah
The TES Awards 2016 took place on Friday 24th June at the The Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London. It is the first time I have been invited, and I was surprised by the sheer scale of it - over 1000 guests fitted into a huge function suite under the hotel. It was a glitzy affair with a champagne reception, "grab as many glasses as you can" I told my wife - how often is there free booze for teachers?
It was nice to be seated with Natalie and Paul who I met for the first time, plus Heather who I have met on numerous occasions at blogger curry meet ups. Sadly Zoe couldn't make it and there were two empty seats at our table - they were in touch via Twitter though! (And we ate their food, as the waiting staff insisted on leaving it...)
TES provided plenty of wine yet the six bottles on the table seemed to evaporate in no time - huge thanks to Rachel and Sarah from the TES team (and Lara who passed on our dilemma!), who kept us topped up when we ran dry! This did compensate for a tasty but slightly small dinner... After paying £90 for my 'plus one' ticket, the wine was sadly out of price range for most teachers.
As much as it was a night to celebrate all schools, teachers and their achievements, I was there as a representative of the blogger community. These are teachers who are able to share, reflect and question some of the important ideas of the education world. Blogging, alongside social media more widely, has brought about change, allowed different voices to be heard and promoted engagement and great thinking with some of the toughest challenges education has to pose.
I know my blogs are not the most well written prose out there, they are often thrown together during a stolen 5 minutes at break time, or drafted at midnight as I lie in bed - I'm a full time teacher with more than enough going on in school... plus a 8 month old son! I am glad that someone somewhere thinks I have something worth sharing and it was nice that some of the judges came to find me to say they found my writing interesting and of value. Thank you.
A final huge thank Andrew for encouraging the blogger community to nominate blogs such as mine (see <here>). Bloggers should be promoting one another, and encouraging others to blog and respond; Andrew does an impressive job with his various Echo Chambers. I know there were reservations about the shortlisting (see <here>), and then some compromise (see <here>), but I do think it is an important award, but one that could perhaps be developed further by TES, perhaps by better engaging with the blogger community.
I haven't see a list of the bloggers linked anywhere else so here they are:
You're on my blog, so you don't need a link...
Thanks again for the shortlisting TES. For next year, remember teachers on a Friday will drink more booze than you imagine, and hopefully a plus one can be included too...
Who knows if or when I'll be back again...