Rural Teacher a VEEA Finalist

Nominated and short-listed for the Outstanding Primary Teacher Award and the winner of the Early Childhood Teacher Award- Specialist Settings, as awarded by Principal Association of Special Schools the last few months have been busy for Riley Corrie.

Riley Corrie is motivated by the small but significant changes she notices in her students. Progress may not always be academic, but to see a student master a skill independently for the first time is always rewarding.

The Swan Hill Specialist School teacher is using her considerable expertise – which focuses on managing students with autism – to coach other teachers of children on the autism spectrum. And her work is transforming the way special needs education is managed in the region.  Riley provides individual coaching as well as whole-staff professional development for mainstream schools with autistic students. She helps teachers understand different ways of teaching students with autism, and coaches them in classroom management strategies.

She offers advice on how to handle challenging behaviours, and has developed professional development programs specifically focused on the wellbeing of students with special needs, such as Zones of Regulation. She also provides structured guidance to graduate teachers.

Riley has introduced her region’s first-ever special-needs library, that allows teachers to try out resources for their classrooms that are often difficult to find in such an isolated region. The library is stocked with books, sensory items, and practical tools for the special needs classroom such as slant boards, stools and specialised Picture Communication Systems.  Riley’s work has meant that students with additional needs can stay in Swan Hill and have access to necessary learning resources and teachers with expertise.

Congratulations to you Riley on being shortlisted for the VEEA ‘Outstanding Primary Teacher Award’.

Other rural finalists in the Victorian Education Excellence Awards included:

  • David Sutton from Maryborough Education Centre nominated for Outstanding Principal Award
  • Kurnai College nominated for Outstanding Koorie Education Award

CEP are thrilled to see high-quality educators in rural and remote Victorian settings being recognised for their work.

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