Above and beyond
Tasmin Drummond, Vasse Primary School
WA Beginning Teacher of the Year 2019
“I’ve never seen a beginning teacher who is as capable and inspiring.”
This statement along with ‘empowering, energising, positive, encouraging, fun, driven, innovative and caring’ are just some of the words used by colleagues, students and parents to describe Tasmin Drummond from Vasse Primary School.
And the accolades don’t end there. With 2019 her first year of teaching, Tasmin has also been nominated for Edith Cowan University’s Young Alumni Award which recognises the extraordinary achievements of new graduates in their first few years after university.
So how did teaching become such a passion for Tasmin?
Beginning her working life at the age of 15 in her home town of Coffs Harbour in New South Wales, Tasmin had a range of jobs both there and here, including retail, waiting tables, bakery management and as a cook.
“I turned 19 and moved from my home in Coffs Harbour to beautiful Margaret River,” Tasmin says.
“Europe soon beckoned so I travelled to England on a working holiday visa and decided to apply for a job as an au pair.”
It was during time while backpacking around Europe that she found her true calling.
“I accepted a job with a fantastic family who had two beautiful children,” she reflects.
“I enjoyed being involved in their lives and really connected with them.”
Tasmin loved how proud the children were of their achievements, no matter how small.
“I realised then that I wanted to help other children to succeed and this is what motivated me to pursue teaching on my return from Europe.”
A star performer in her teaching studies, Tasmin completed an internship at Vasse Primary School.
The school immediately recognised her outstanding talent and offered her a teaching position.
Vasse Primary School’s Deputy Principal, Amy Sefton, said Tasmin had an amazing ability to create positive relationships with her students, colleagues and families.
“Tasmin is such an engaging teacher who is getting such good results already,” Amy says.
“She is innovative and truly talented and will enjoy a very successful and exciting teaching career.”
Deeply passionate about her role, Tasmin epitomises the modern day teacher and goes above and beyond to develop herself and others, including her students, peers and the wider teaching community.
Not only has Tasmin made a significant and measurable impact on student learning throughout the school. She is also a reliable source of advice and support to her colleagues through sharing her teaching knowledge and passion with other staff.
“Working in a school with such a strong, positive culture keeps me motivated about teaching,” Tasmin says.
“The staff here are so innovative and are always exploring ways to benefit our students’ education.
“We are genuinely excited to invest ourselves in new opportunities, to share student success stories, and note ways we can improve.
“Seeing our students show personal and academic growth keeps us motivated, passionate and excited about education, where it is headed in the future and how we can best facilitate this.”
With a genuine love of teaching, an ability to know each of her students and catering for their different learning styles and abilities, it’s obvious Tasmin is dedicated to each child in her class.
“I love the beautiful relationships I am able to build with my students,” she says.
“I love that they trust me and that they can’t wait to tell me their stories.”
With a focus on social and emotional wellbeing as well as learning styles and personal needs, Tasmin always considers the whole child and supports them well beyond the classroom.
Her students say they feel genuinely cared for, accepted and very safe to share their feelings. This in turn creates a safe learning environment which they say helps them to learn more.
When asked of her teaching achievements, Tasmin says she was proud her students could see that she was honestly invested in them and in the school.
“My students are able to recognise that everything I do is for their benefit,” Tasmin says.
“On a good day, I see my students trying so hard to be their best selves. On a great day, I see the results of them being their best selves.
“I want them to be aware of the power of their voice and the impact of their actions.
“I want them to remember to be passionate in what they believe in and that they have so much power in shaping their world.”
WA Beginning Teacher of the Year 2019
This award recognises the fresh, enthusiastic and passionate approach that beginning teachers bring to their classrooms and to the profession. They embrace technology and innovate in their approach to teaching and learning. They contribute to their school communities in many different ways.
Proudly sponsored by Edith Cowan University.
- Tasmin Drummond, Vasse Primary School
- Dion Alfonsi, Shenton College
- Kieron Alford, Belmont City College
- Julie Hughes, Ashdale Secondary College