Delight for two Lowestoft students as their work is recognised at council awards ceremony

Jake Snell at the Raising the Bar awards ceremony.

Jake Snell at the Raising the Bar awards ceremony. - Credit: Archant

Two students are celebrating after the winners of the second Raising the Bar awards were announced.

Ben Mullender wins Young Person of the Year in the Raising the Bar awards. Pictured at Old Warren Ho

Ben Mullender wins Young Person of the Year in the Raising the Bar awards. Pictured at Old Warren House. - Credit: Nick Butcher

Winner of Inspirational Young Person of the Year at Secondary level, Ben Mullender, 16, has significantly improved his attendance, maturity and self-motivation.

The teenager, who attends the Old Warren House Pupil Referral Unit in Lowestoft, found school a challenge right from the start, but since starting at Old Warren House PRU he has matured and progressed a great deal.

His attendance has improved and he has made better than expected progress academically. He has progressed to the point where he is a self-motivated learner who has goals to go to college and also acts as a peer mentor.

The school caters for pupils in Years 10 and 11 of their education who live within the Northern Area of Suffolk. Pupils are all referred to Old Warren House through the local authority.

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Mr Mullender said: 'I wasn't compatible with school to begin with and it is a bit of a shame that during my last year of school I have done the best.

'I am now thinking that I want to become a teaching assistant.'

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'To begin with I didn't think I would get the award but when my name was read out, I felt really good but mainly surprised that I won.'

Paul Morton, Executive Headteacher said: 'I knew Ben when I was the headteacher at Lothingland Middle School and since then, he has turned into someone that I never dreamed he would.

'He is outgoing, pleasant, mature and has come on so far.

'He did not do very well at high school but now he is willing to try things and will not give up on anything at all.

'I was gobsmacked when he won the award, it was truly fantastic.'

Representing Oulton Broad Primary School, Jake Snell was celebrating after winning the Young Achiever of the Year award for Primary School children.

His award marked a successful evening for the school which had nominations for five awards in total.

Jake is currently in Year 5 but is performing well above national expectations in all subjects. He was described by the judges as a 'model pupil who acts as a role model to his peers and is a member of the school council'.

Jake said: 'I went to the awards with my mum and dad and I was really excited when I heard my name read out. It was quite nerve-wracking as well and I was really shocked but very proud at the same time.

'I am doing quite well in my Maths and in my reading and I have now put my award underneath the TV at home as I have nowhere else to put it.'

Headteacher Jamie White said he was 'immensely proud' of Jake and all of the nominees from the school. A display of all the certificates from the nominees have been placed in the reception area.

'It was a wonderful event and it was lovely to see all of the good practice in schools from across Suffolk, being rewarded.

'We are very proud of Jake, it was an amazing achievement and it was truly deserved as he is a positive role model.

'He is a kind of child who will always apply himself to whatever you put in front of him, whether it is a sporting challenge, or academic challenge.'

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