Tyril Houghton described her emotions as humbled after being nominated and then subsequently winning the Department of Education’s 2016 Women of Achievement award.
The Women of Achievement award acknowledges outstanding and sustained leadership and contribution to West Australian education.
Tyril’s win at the awards is a testament to the hard work and dedication she’s put in to her position at Bunbury Senior High since becoming head of mathematics in 2013.
BSHS principal Craige Pettit wrote in his nomination form that Tyril is a passionate, dedicated and exemplary member of staff who has reinvigorated the teaching of mathematics at Bunbury Senior High School.
“Tyril has ensured that students and all other are challenged and provided with opportunities to excel wherever possible,” he wrote.
But Tyril isn’t limited to supplying opportunity to just students and said staff also need leadership and opportunity to allow for growth.
“I take a special interest in my staff, they learn from me and I learn from them all the time, we work together as a collaborative team,” Tyril said.
Tyril was recognised as an outstanding mentor in 2010 of young teachers by winning the GESB Mentoring Award.
Bunbury Senior High’s NAPLAN results clearly demonstrate Tyril’s dedication to student education.
From 2008 until 2012 the school’s NAPLAN numeracy scores were below the national mean, but the beginning of Tyril’s time at the school is clearly marked by a spike in scores reaching above the national average.
In 2013 the national mean was 584 and the school’s mean was 586, 2014 the national mean was 588 and the schools mean was 596, in 2015 the national mean was 592 and the schools mean was 609 and in 2016 the national mean was 588 and the schools mean was 593.
Tyril’s contribution to the life of students doesn’t end with education and she prides herself on being an effective gender role model.
Since becoming head of mathematics the highschool has also seen Tyril increase the number of females choosing specialist mathematics in senior school – inspiring them to pursue studies in physics, chemistry and mathematics at a high level.
Tyril’s said she relishes the opportunity to teach skills in logic and reason that are valuable life tools.
“Math teaches skills vital for science and physics but also equips young people with logical life skills,” she said.
“I feel like I’ve achieved a goal – I’m humbled by my nomination and the esteem my principal and vice principal hold for me.”
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