Queen's Birthday Honours: Woman who has dedicated decades to inclusion at Northamptonshire school awarded BEM
Jacqui created an inclusion unit and has since spent years developing programmes to help students with their wellbeing and their futures
A woman who has spent decades of her life working within inclusion at a Northamptonshire school has been named on the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.
Jacqueline Goodall, who is the inclusion support manager at Sponne School in Towcester, has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM).
The 56-year-old has worked at the school for nearly 20 years after starting in 2001 as a learning support assistant, following a move to the area from Yorkshire where she worked in child protection for social services.
In 2008, Jacqui set up a new inclusion provision after she saw a need for it within the school.
To this day, the unit continues to go from strength to strength and helps many students.
The provision includes supportive systems and programmes- which Jacqui designed - to help children who find school challenging or who are disadvantaged, with emotional wellbeing, self-esteem and future aspirations.
Jacqui said: “I’m so proud to work at Sponne, that’s why I have been here so long.
“The senior leadership team is so supportive and I feel as though they have really invested in me, especially with the inclusion unit.
“Back in 2008 I decided we needed inclusion as wellbeing is paramount to the learning of students.
“Students all have different backgrounds and different difficulties and some have no aspirations at school.
“I build relationships with students which shows them that somebody does care. It’s good to get that relationship so we can get the best for them.
“Now the unit has grown more because of the focus on mental health and our pastoral care team has grown.
“We have a fantastic pastoral care and safeguarding team, which I am proud of.
“I really do love my job and the kids are all just superpb.”
As well as the work within the inclusion unit, which includes helping students find work experience, fill in college applications, find apprenticeships and more, Jacqui is also qualified as a high level teaching assistant, which means she can teach small classes.
She specialises in teaching maths to children who struggle with the subject in a bigger, mainstream class.
Reflecting on being named on the Queen’s Birthday Honours list, Jacqui says she is extremely grateful, but is also keen to keep going and achieve more.
She added: “It’s overwhelming and a real honour.
“To think I have even been thought of to be put forward is crazy.
“I’m so grateful to be recognised for the work I have done but it has not been a bind at all. I enjoy what I do.
“It’s been a difficult year and I have felt a bit lost as we have had to have support bubbles so I have not been involved in the whole school as much as I would like, so I’m looking forward to September.
“I’m looking forward to supporting the younger children too, helping with the impact Covid has left and to building their confidence again.”
As well as looking forward to the new school year, Jacqui is also excited to finally be able to share the news with her family that she has been included in the honours list.