A Cardiff pupil support manager has been awarded the British Empire Medal for services to education and the community after being included in the New Year’s Honours list.
Theresa Condick, who works at Glyn Derw High School, Caerau, was told about her nomination for the medal in November, but was asked for the news to remain in “strictest confidence.”
She was informed she had been awarded the medal on the day before New Year’s Eve, and is now waiting to be told when she will receive the medal.
“I was overwhelmed to be honest, it is such a huge honour,” said Mrs Condick, who lives in an on-site house at Glyn Derw with her husband, who is estate manager at the school.
Mrs Condick said her work entails a lot of caring for pupils, some of whom may be going through difficult times at home, with the ultimate aim of providing a safe environment at school.
“I am responsible for the nurture room here, which provides a homely environment for the children, and is a facility which helps keep children in school.
“The nurture room helps any pupils who may be going through a bereavement in the family, or who are facing any trauma at home.
“It is something we are very proud of because, although many primary schools have a similar facility, it is fairly unique to Glyn Derw among secondary schools”.
Councillor for Caerau, Elaine Simmons, has told of the work Mrs Condick does in the community: “She is an asset to the community of Caerau and works tremendously hard for both the community and the education of young people in Caerau. She supports pupils with extra lunch time revision clubs, after school clubs, fetes etcetera.”
Mark Drakeford AM also welcomed the news and said: “Theresa is a huge asset to the community. She works tirelessly supporting the education of pupils at Glyn Derw, getting involved with after school clubs, holiday clubs, fetes, and lots of other activities. She is thoroughly deserving of the award.”
Sian Smith, a colleague, was also full of praise. She said: “Although I have only worked alongside Theresa as a member of staff since September, I was privileged to work with her when I was literacy coordinator at Cardiff LA before then.
“We worked together to set up a weekly session for students who were not progressing with their reading to work with a group of volunteers from Price Waterhouse Coopers.
“The impact of this weekly intervention was huge – all students made accelerated progress – some made three years progress in an academic year.
“It was an extremely positive experience for both the company and the students, and this was in no small part down to the commitment from Theresa in firstly making it happen, and secondly, the way she kept it going. She is a dedicated and inspirational member of staff.”
Although Mrs Condick has been awarded the medal already, she hasn’t received the medal and is yet to learn when this will be.
She said: “I am not sure when the award ceremony will be but I am told it will be in Wales, and then I will be invited to Buckingham Palace, probably for a garden party.
Reflecting humbly on what it will mean to receive the medal, Mrs Condick said: “To accept it will be to reflect our involvement in the community.”