Rachel Williamson, a Year 3 teacher at Robert Wilkinson Primary Academy, was among 100 teachers from across the country who attended 10 Downing Street for a reception to celebrate their hard work, talent and commitment to giving every child an excellent education.
Mrs Williamson met the Prime Minister, Theresa May, and Education Secretary Damian Hinds – as well as Larry the Downing Street cat – behind the famous black door.
“It was so surreal and Number 10 is like a tardis,” said Mrs Williamson, who has been a teacher at Robert Wilkinson in Strensall for 18 years and is also the director of School Direct primary teacher training programme for Ebor Teaching Schools Alliance.
“Inside is huge – there are so many rooms and it’s like a stately home. The Prime Minister is not as tall as you might think, and is very slight.”
Mrs May and Mr Hinds paid tribute to the hard work and dedication of the teaching profession.
In a statement, Prime Minister Theresa May said: “We know that the success of every young person, in whatever they go on to do in life, is shaped by the education they receive at school.
“That’s why I was delighted to welcome teachers to Downing Street to celebrate their achievements and to thank them for the vital work they do day-in and day-out.”
Mrs Williamson used the occasion to ask her class, as part of a literacy project in persuasive writing, to write a letter to the Prime Minister to attend Robert Wilkinson Primary Academy’s 300th anniversary celebrations in July.
The event on Monday (21 May) capped a weekend of celebrations for Rachel, who was celebrating a significant birthday.
Robert Wilkinson Primary Academy is the founding school of Ebor Academy Trust, which now operates 18 schools across York, Selby, the East Riding and the Humber and on the Yorkshire Coast.