Two sign language tutors from Cornwall have jointly won awards for their inspirational tutoring.
Jackie Bryant and Manda Lambert, from Newquay, Cornwall, are winners of the Festival of Learning Tutor award in the South West region.
The award recognises inspirational teaching and training professionals who have supported learners to go on and lead successful and rewarding lives.
Jackie and Manda teach British Sign Language (BSL) at Cornwall College and over the years have become quite the team. Both profoundly deaf themselves, their skills as BSL teachers allows them to pass on their passion and expertise for the subject to groups of learners of all hearing abilities.
From developing a bespoke social media platform enabling their students to practise signing outside of college hours, to involving deaf members of the local community in lessons, Jackie and Manda’s creativity and talent makes every lesson count.
“We introduce our deaf friends to the learners to give them more opportunities to use their BSL skills,” mentions Jackie.
Manda explains the impact teaching has had on her: “Teaching has increased my confidence and developed my ability to interact with hearing people that I didn’t have before.”
Steve Double MP said he was “absolutely delighted to hear of the success of Jackie and Manda in the Festival of Learning Awards”.
“Their commitment to improve both their own skills and those of the people they teach is simply inspiring, and absolutely deserving of this recognition,” he added.
Dawn Ferguson-Smith, from The Cornwall College Group, adds: “Their hands-on method of teaching brings BSL to life and makes its application more immediate to those with little experience of deaf culture.”
Stephen Evans, Chief Executive at Learning and Work Institute, said: “Jackie and Manda display all the qualities of excellent tutors – they’re passionate about their subject, build their lessons around the needs of their learners and think creatively. This award recognises the positive impact Manda and Jackie are having in their community by delivering excellent lifelong learning.”
“Lifelong learning is crucial for all of us as jobs and society changes around us, and as the working population gets older. Festival of Learning is all about people being inspired by stories like Manda and Jackie’s. We encourage everyone to get involved in learning and access information on learning opportunities and support with the costs of learning that might be available, such as through Advanced Learner Loans or from the National Careers Service, as well as talking to their local colleges and providers about what’s on offer”.