THREE inspirational school staff who transform the lives of pupils in York have been nominated for the Community Pride awards.

Teachers Sue Williamson of Burnholme Community College and Tony Teasdale from All Saints, and teaching assistant Kathy Arthur from Canon Lee School are the latest community heroes to be recognised in the Teacher of the Year and Public Sector Hero awards.

Music and English teacher Sue fought a long and hard battle against Burnholme's closure, and is now launching her own Tang Hall Rock School to continue inspiring people through music.

Her nomination as Teacher of the Year has come from 15 year old Sol Jackson, now at Joseph Rowntree School, because she introduced him to drumming, supported him through a tough time with school bullies, and has set up a music club for former Burnholme students missing their old college.

Sol added: "Whenever I was feeling down or unhappy or just fed up Mrs Williamson would always cheer me up. She was and always will be someone who I can talk to and she always helps me and my peers."

At Canon Lee, Kathy Arthur has been a teaching assistant for almost 13 years, and has been nominated by her colleague school librarian Charlotte York.

Charlotte said: "Kathy never stops working to support the students and staff at Canon Lee School. She always goes the extra mile."

Kathy has helped dozens of pupils who speak English as an additional language, and her efforts in sourcing props and costumes have been vital to the school's drama productions. Charlotte added: "Kathy has endless patience and boosts the confidence of young people."

Even though she formally retired earlier this year she has continued to travel in, on the bus from her home in PIckering, as many as four days a week to help out voluntarily.

At All Saints, assistant head teacher Tony Teasdale, who is set to retire this week after 26 years at the school. has been nominated by 15 year old Crystal Jeffries.

She said her teacher inspires many by coming in each day with a smile on his face, always has time for his students, and has made the school's community a better place.

Crystal said: "He has helped and guided my through a lot the past year.

"Mr Teasdale is incredibly inspirational, he once told me that 'everyone needs grit', meaning you need that extra bit in your personality to get through the hard times.

"I have talked with many of the teachers and all of them have said that Mr Teasdale is an inspiring man and makes their own teaching years a whole lot better."

The Community Pride awards are run by The Press with City of York Council, and sponsored by Benenden Health.

Nominations can be made online at before Friday, July 18.