A DEDICATED college tutor has received a prestigious Ministry of Defence training award after helping an army of soldiers improve their literacy and numeracy skills.
Darlington College MOD co-ordinator and senior lecturer June Fairclough was presented with the Army Trainer of the Year Award for her work in delivering functional skills in maths and English to more than 400 infantry recruits every year.
June, who received the award at the Infantry Training Centre at Catterick from commanding officer Lieutenant Colonel Paul Tingey, said: “I was delighted when I was nominated but to actually win was an incredible achievement and recognition for the whole team here at Catterick ITC.
“I love my job especially seeing the recruits achieve in a classroom environment. Many of them come to us lacking in confidence after becoming disillusioned at school so to see them learn and develop their skills is absolutely incredible.”
Over 19 per cent of new recruits arrive at Catterick ITC without the required qualifications in English and maths.
The college’s three-week programme, in partnership with the MOD ITC Functional Skills department, contextualises learning using exercises that soldiers can relate to, including map reading and weapon handling.
It also offers one to one support which results in an incredible 98 per cent of recruits gaining their qualifications first time – well above the national average.
MOD functional skills manager Kay Whitehouse, who nominated June for the award, said: “June is a fundamental part of our team here at ITC and having worked with her for many years she absolutely deserves this recognition for her dedication and sheer hard work.
“I know that June’s passion for teaching and learning has inspired many recruits to rediscover their education and learning.”
Darlington College curriculum manager for English, maths and ESOL Lois Calvert added: “I am delighted for June and her team who work extremely hard often to very tight deadlines.
“This course is unique; no other training establishment in the MOD is doing what they do. It is a vital part of infantry training. Recruits really want to achieve and we give them the external motivation to do just that.”
For more information on opportunities at Darlington College visit www.darlington.ac.uk.