GEMS Teacher Awards

Celebrating our inspirational teachers

About the Award

Celebrating our inspirational teachers

GEMS Teacher of the Month Awards

In continuing to highlight just how important our teachers are to us and in line with our Founder's mission to raise the stature of the teaching profession, every GEMS school identifies one exceptional teacher every month through the GEMS Teacher of the Month Award.

At the end of the year every school nominates one of these GEMS Teacher of the Month Award winners to be considered for the Mariamma Varkey Award for Inspirational and Outstanding Teaching at GEMS.

Criteria for the GEMS Teacher of the Month Award

1. Provides inspiration, motivation and a love for learning in their students.

2. Designs and implements inclusive teaching strategies that are responsive to the learning strengths and needs of students from diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds.

3. Provides differentiated strategies to identify and meet the specific learning needs of students across the full range of abilities; and to suit the physical, social and intellectual development of students.

4. Uses contemporary knowledge and understanding of curriculum, assessment and reporting requirements and exhibits innovative pedagogical practices that engage and support all students

5. Creates, selects and uses a wide range of resources, including ICT, to engage students in their learning.

6. Demonstrates a continuous improvement mindset as a reflective practitioner to enhance their professional knowledge and practice.

7. Maintains high ethical standards and exercises sound judgement in all school and community contexts.

8. Identifies, initiates and builds on opportunities to engage parents/careers in the progress of their children's learning.

9. Participates in, and contributes to, professional networks and associations and builds productive links with the wider community to improve teaching and learning.

10. Provides collegial support and leadership for others in the school.


To be eligible, teacher-of-the-month award winners must:

- be currently working teachers at GEMS schools who teach children that are in compulsory schooling, or are between the ages of two and eighteen

- have worked in a GEMS school for at least a year

- not be prohibited from participating in the contest or receiving the award under any applicable law

- Not have a criminal record nor conduct themselves (by act or omission) in such a way as to bring the teaching profession into disreput.

If you would like to nominate someone from your child's school for this award please get in touch with the senior leadership team at the school. 


GEMS Teacher Awards at JC

Nominate a teacher of the month at Jumeirah College

In 2014 Mr Sunny Varkey, Founder and Chairman of GEMS, launched the Global Teacher Prize. This award, presented annually, recognises the best teacher in the world. Thousands of teachers are nominated, leading to an overall winner. In 2016 Hanan Al Hroub was presented the prize for her work in Palestine.

One of the realities of this prize is that it is only able to recognise one teacher a year. There are, however, many hundreds of thousands of teachers across the world who do amazing work every day and many of these teachers work in GEMS schools. To recognise these teachers Mr Varkey has introduced two further awards.

The first is the Mariamma Varkey Award for Inspirational and Outstanding Teaching at GEMS. This award, presented on an annual basis, recognises the very best of the GEMS teachers. These teachers motivate and stimulate their students to question, inquire, create, problem solve and to aspire to be the best. They also inspire their colleagues to do better with their students as reflective practitioners.

The second award is the GEMS Teacher Award. This will identify one exceptional teacher every month to be awarded in every GEMS school and will give each school community the opportunity to celebrate its teachers. The teacher of the month is provided with a certificate and a monetary prize. Nominations are invited from parents, students and Jumeirah College staff.

There is no particular criteria for a nomination but suggested considerations could include:

• Provides inspiration, motivation

• Uses inclusive teaching strategies

• Provides differentiated strategies

• Exhibits innovative pedagogical practices

• Uses a wide range of resources

• Demonstrates a continuous improvement mind-set

• Maintains high ethical standards

• Identifies, initiates and builds on opportunities to engage parents/carers

• Participates in, and contributes to, professional networks and associations

• Provides collegial support and leadership

Each month nominations will be collected together and reviewed by a selection panel who will then choose the winner. Any nomination which is not successful will be carried over to the next meeting for consideration.

Should you wish to nominate a teacher click here to download a nomination form. This is also available on the D6 communicator. The nomination form should be emailed to [email protected]. Alternatively, a nomination form can be collected and returned to reception.

The teachers at Jumeirah College work incredibly hard and do a fabulous job. I enjoy enormously hearing the many stories that parents share with me of the impact that they have on the students. I always look forward to reading the many nominations that arrive.


GEMS Exceptional Head of School Awards, January 2018, Runner-Up: Mr Simon O'Connor

Winners of the GEMS Teacher Award

June 2019 - Mr John Woolcock - Teacher of Geography

May 2019: Ms Chloe Scott - Teacher of Science

April 2019: Ms Elizabeth Tossell - Teacher of English

March 2019: Mr Genesco Dela Cruz - Teacher of ICT

February 2019: Mrs Kelly Storey - Head of History and Government and Politics

January 2019: Mrs Nicola Kesterton - Teacher of Geography

December 2018: Mr Leon Aikman - Teacher of Mathematics

November 2018: Miss Caroline Hanley - Teacher of Business Studies

October 2018: Miss Emma Chamberlain - Head of Mathematics

September 2018: Ms Frances Phillips - Teacher of English


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