Oct 7 2011 by Stuart Wilson, Ayrshire Post (main ed)
A FORMER art teacher who rose to land his school’s top job could now land a prestigious award.
John MacKenzie, the new headteacher at Doon Academy, is already top of the pops with kids and teachers alike.
Now he’s been nominated in the Best Teacher category at the annual of West Sound Cream of Ayrshire awards.
And his sterling work at the Dalmellington school could be rewarded in fine style should he land the title at tonight’s (Thursday) glittering Brig o’ Doon bash.
Ayrshire fundraiser Lorna Dempsey, who was taught by Mr MacKenzie 16 years ago, revealed why she had to nominate him all these years on.
She said: “Back in 1995, Mr MacKenzie was my art teacher when I was in sixth year.
“He was excellent and very influential to my studies back then.
“Sixteen years later, Mr MacKenzie has taught thousands of students and made a massive difference to their lives and recently had a well-deserved promotion to headteacher.
“Mr MacKenzie was a huge part of the management team taking Doon Academy through a recent very positive HMIE inspection.
“He has a strong vision for our wee school and plans to continue to build on its strengths, seeing the students as the most valued members of the school community.”
Mr MacKenzie admitted: “I see the award as recognition for all the excellent teachers at Doon – me least amongst them – and I would be really pleased if the award came to our school.
“At this time I am sure that I have two, possibly three votes – my wife, the ex-pupil who nominated me and a pupil that I threatened with detention.”
The awards recognise heroes who have gone the extra mile to make a difference in their communities.