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5 August, 2021

Destined to teach

THERE was never a doubt in Ann Blakeney’s mind, she wanted to be, and was destined to be a teacher from an early age. What she did not appreciate at that time was the profound impact she would have on the lives of thousands of students she taught.

By Peter McCullagh

St Gerard Majella School Teacher Ann Blakeney

Teacher Anne Blakeney’s contribution to education was formally recognised last week when she was awarded the prestigious 2021 Spirit of Catholic Education (SOCE) Award.

One of only six teachers to receive this award across Queensland, Ms Blakeney is a Prep Teacher and Leader of Engagement at St Gerard Majella School in Woree.

Ms Blakeney said she was “incredibly honoured” to receive this award and grateful to those who nominated her. She said the best thing about being a teacher was the students.

She took home the gong in the Primary Teacher category, while Mitch Griffiths from Holy Spirit College in Cooktown was the recipient in the Secondary Teacher category and Natisha Ford from St Monica’s College in Cairns received the Early Career Teacher award.

Maria Caltabiano, from Good Counsel Primary School in Innisfail, was named the recipient of the Leadership award, Jason Cislowski from St Joseph’s School in Atherton received the School Officer honour and Jennifer Shannon from St Gerard Majella School in Woree topped the Volunteer category.

The Lifelong Contribution award went to Cairns Catholic Education Services Director of School Effectiveness – Primary, Gerard Kearney.

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