A SPORTS teacher has been rubbing shoulders with the stars after being honoured for her tireless efforts.
Liz Neale, from Whitley Bay, won the award for School Sport Teacher of the Year at the Aviva School Sports Matter awards.
The teacher at Cedars Academy and Sports College was honoured for her work in disabled sport, receiving the award from 2000 Olympic triple-jump champion and world record holder Jonathan Edwards.
Liz, 57, said: “It’s fantastic to have won an award and I think it is great recognition for how important sport for young people with disabilities actually is.
“I have been involved in sport for the disabled for almost 30 years. We are taking sport out to young people in the area.
“I think there is a greater understanding by teachers and parents about what their young people can do and what they should be allowed to do and encouraged to do.
“I think it is hugely important and it will have the impact of getting more people involved eventually.
“But in schools I think there is that little bit of fear of letting disabled children get involved with PE but I think seeing what can be achieved in the Paralympics can make people relax.
“These people achieved an awful lot and it is up to us to encourage them to do so.”
The Aviva and Daily Telegraph School Sport Matters Awards recognise outstanding achievements in school sport, and are part of Aviva’s wider commitment to support the next generation of British sporting talent. For more go to aviva.co.uk/rugby-sponsorship