People across Leeds are being asked to send in messages to thank schools and members of the education community that have supported them during the pandemic.
These messages will then be placed on billboards across the city, to show appreciation and raise awareness of everything educators have done to help others. Through repeated lockdowns and with remote teaching and social distancing, the teaching community of Leeds have gone the extra mile to support their pupils. Whether it’s a teacher who helped a pupil struggling at home, a lunchtime supervisor who kept everyone safe at meal times or a teaching assistant that is an unsung hero – it is hoped the messages will highlight individuals and schools that have made a difference.
People are invited to send in their messages in any format to show their appreciation, be this a drawing, written message, poem or video. They can be submitted to appear on the billboards using this nomination form www.twinkl.co.uk before 6th June, by sending to firstname.lastname@example.org or by simply posting on social media using the hashtag #WaveOfThanksLeeds by Wednesday 23rd June. The digital billboards will be live from Thursday 10th to Thursday 24th June, located at Kirkstall road, Victoria road, Leeds Tower and local supermarkets.
Any schools nominated using the form before 6th June will also be in with the chance of receiving one of 500 wellbeing bundles. These will be packed full of goodies including tea and biscuits (staples of staff rooms around the world), thank you postcards and notepads and pens.
The billboard messages are part of a campaign organised by the educational resource publisher Twinkl, with the charity Mind and school supplies YPO, after they recognised the huge lengths educators have gone to for others throughout the past year. The campaign includes a range of other activities and surprises that celebrate educators for their dedication and give people an opportunity to thank someone close to their heart.
As part of this, the public sector buying organisation YPO, which supplies materials and contract support to schools across the UK, is sending 100 surprise ‘Thank You’ gifts to teachers and school staff. They will also be running a competition to give communities a chance to name 40 new delivery fleet vehicles after inspirational teachers.
Leon Smith, Chief Customer Officer at Twinkl said:
“The wellbeing bundles and billboards are a way of showing school staff how valued and appreciated they are. We’d love them to see a heartfelt message of thanks on a billboard on their way to work, giving them a boost after such a challenging year.
“Despite the difficulties they have faced, educators have gone above and beyond to offer the very best teaching, care and support during the pandemic. It’s so important to show them how thankful people are for their ongoing support and commitment to their pupils.”
Twinkl was founded in 2010 in Sheffield by husband and wife Jonathan and Susie Seaton, with a mission ‘to help those who teach’. The company provides high quality, online learning materials and services, which are all teacher-created and checked. Twinkl offers over 710,000 resources, with new content added daily. This ranges from schemes of work and assessments to augmented reality games and much more.
Twinkl is used and trusted by schools and educators in over 200 countries and regions, including primary and secondary school teachers, nursery workers and parents. Twinkl has over 790 team members based in its two Sheffield offices and remotely around the globe. More information can be found at www.twinkl.co.uk
The idea for Twinkl came to Jonathan and Susie Seaton when Susie was working as an Early Years teacher and couldn’t find the materials she needed for her lessons online. As a result, Susie was working evenings and weekends to make resources from scratch. Speaking to colleagues and friends, the couple found that Susie was not alone in her situation. So, to help other teachers, they began creating and publishing educational resources online from their spare bedroom.
The business grew quickly and organically as educators embraced the high-quality materials. The team grew quickly too, with current and former teachers, as well as experts in content and design soon joining Jonathan and Susie in their mission ‘to help those who teach.’ Jonathan and Susie are delighted that Twinkl is now taking this mission across the world, returning time and energy to educators that is better spent in the classroom with their pupils or on themselves at home. To find out more, please visit: www.twinkl.co.uk
Mind, the mental health charity, provides advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem. We campaign to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding. We won’t give up until everyone experiencing a mental health problem gets both support and respect www.leedsmind.org.uk
Mind has a confidential information and support line, Mind Infoline, available on 0300 123 3393 (lines open 9am – 6pm, Monday – Friday) For information and support on staying mentally healthy at this time, visit www.mind.org.uk/coronavirus
Mind’s online mental health community Side by Side is a safe space where anyone aged 18 and over with experience of a mental health problem can share their story, connect with others, access Mind’s wider information and resources, and give support in return. Find out more at www.sidebyside.mind.org.uk
Mind’s income has been affected by the outbreak of coronavirus, largely due to the temporary closure of our charity shops across England and Wales, and the cancellation or postponement of major fundraising events. To help us continue our vital work, donate to our emergency appeal: www.mind.org.uk/donate
Mind offers free resources for employers to help improve mental wellbeing. For more information, visit www.mind.org.uk/work