Madonna Archibald is the first teacher in the Cairns Diocese to become certified as a Highly Accomplished Teacher (HAT).
The nationally-recognised certification, which is open to all teachers, took two years to complete and was not an easy process according to the Our Lady Help of Christians, Earlville teacher.
“The process of compiling a HAT portfolio is definitely not easy, but most certainly worthwhile,” Madonna said.
The evidence collection is based on the teacher’s practice, how they support their colleagues, the professional learning throughout the journey and, above all, the impact they had on their students.
Madonna has demonstrated she has had an impact across her year level and is a role model for other teachers at the Earlville school, according to Principal Luke Felstead.
“I think it goes without saying we are very proud of Madonna – to know only five people in Catholic Education in the whole state made it all the way through to get a HAT or Lead position,” Luke said.
“I think one of the wonderful things about Madonna achieving HAT is that she is now a role model for other educators to challenge themselves. She has forged the path for other people to follow and I would encourage other educators who are confident in their practice to take up the challenge.”
Madonna says having an impact on her colleagues as well as her students has inspired her throughout the two-year journey.
“Throughout the HAT process, my passion for teaching has become stronger and I would hope that my impact on students’ performance growth and wellbeing will benefit from this process,” the Year 6 teacher said.
“If I were to say anything it would be that I am quietly proud of the achievement.”