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Pembrokeshire College, Merlins Bridge, Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, SA61 1SZ

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Gold Pearson Teaching Award for Excellence in Special Needs Education

: David Jones with WorldSkills UK learners from the Learning Skills Academy

Pembrokeshire College is proud to announce that David Jones, the Life Skills Academy Employability Coordinator, has been honoured with the esteemed Gold Pearson Teaching Award for Excellence in Special Needs Education. The recognition comes as a testament to David’s commitment and outstanding contributions to the field.

The prestigious award was presented to David during a surprise announcement on the BBC One Show, where he was initially under the impression of receiving a silver award. To his astonishment, the surprise unveiling of the gold award was made by none other than Ospreys and Welsh Rugby player Nicky Smith.

Former Life Skills Academy learners, Craig Deakin and Davin O’Keeffe, had the privilege of presenting the award to David, highlighting the deep impact he has had on the lives of those he has worked with.

As the Life Skills Academy Employability Coordinator, David plays a crucial role in empowering learners to reach their employment potential and acquire essential independent living skills. When asked by BBC presenter Kevin Duala about his motivation to work with individuals with special needs, David responded,

“Because they have a passion for life, and they never let anything hold them back.”

A testament to David’s significant influence is evident in the success story of Davin O’Keeffe, who spoke of the transformative effect David had on his life.

Davin stated, “David supported me in terms of work, mental health, and education. Without David, I would never have had the confidence to go out into the wider world.”

Today, Davin is pursuing a Level 4 Performing Arts course at Cardiff and the Vale College, a testament to the transformative influence of David’s mentorship.

Pembrokeshire College Principal, Dr Barry Walters expressed his admiration for David’s achievement, stating: “The Gold Pearson Teaching Award is a testament to David’s dedication and the positive impact that he has made on the lives of our learners. Pembrokeshire College is proud to have such an exceptional educator among its staff and he is thoroughly deserving of this award.”

David’s Gold Pearson Teaching Award underscores Pembrokeshire College’s commitment to fostering excellence in education and ensuring inclusivity in learning environments.

You can catch David’s shining moment on BBC iPlayer (BBC One Show): www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer

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