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Academy built on fun and love is nominated as the happiest Primary School in the UK

Hillcrest Academy - happiness awards

Hillcrest Early Years Academy in Gainsborough has been nominated in the Happiest Primary school category of the National Happiness Awards 19.

In her nomination Julie McDonald, Executive Principal of Hillcrest Early Years Academy, says:

'The Academy is built on fun and love. We believe our success academically comes from this magic formula.

'We are an outstanding academy (Oct 2014), we have excellent staff retention and people on waiting lists wanting to join us.

'We have a staff reward scheme which enables staff to have a duvet day per term. They can use this day to do such things as see their child's concert or visit the bank manager. The reward scheme gives staff the feeling that they are valued and looked after.

'We also reward staff for their loyalty and longevity for working at the Academies.

'The Hillcrest philosophy is that employees should be happy at work as this translates directly to what is delivered in the classrooms.

'Staff from other schools look enviously at our Academy for treating our staff so well.'

As well as spreading the love, staff at Hillcrest don't neglect the fun part of their philosophy. Executive Principal, Julie McDonald explains:

We start every staff meeting, with 20 minutes of a sport. It's part of our unusual sports programme, where pupils get involved in sports such as fencing, zorbing, lacrosse etc. Everyone gets moving and motivated before tackling training sessions. We even made the TES magazine for this work. Staff love taking part, and we also have a team of staff who play in the wheelchair basketball Lincolnshire inter-workplace competitions.

'Our Executive Principal organises staff quizzes, fish and chips nights and scavenger hunts, to keep the team fresh and fun. She also started the Academies annual charity Shakespeare plays. Staff perform in their own time while raising money for charity and introducing our pupils to the work of the Bard. We love working together to use our talents for our pupils.

Well, we're certainly feeling the love at Happiness Awards Towers. If you are too, you can submit a supporting nomination on our National Happiness Awards 19 page. Or maybe you think your school out-funs Hillcrest? Don't be shy - let the UK know how amazing your school is. Nominate your school today and be part of the UK's premier happiness and wellbeing event.

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