Dr Jennifer Bannan
Kirwan State High School
Described as “an outstanding and inspiring teacher in just her second year in the profession”, Dr Jennifer Bannan uses her Biochemistry PhD in medical research to deliver powerful lessons which prepare students for the 21st Century.
The Senior Biology, Chemistry, Junior Science and extension Science teacher this year is delivering a new global citizenship subject – Human Technologies, is leading the Year 10 Science Team, which has nine classes, and is mentoring preservice teachers.
Last year she was awarded the North Queensland Regional Secondary Principals’ Prize for highest graduating education student at the Townsville James Cook University campus, where she has been a guest speaker at lectures and conference presentations to discuss the transition and beginning years of teaching.
Her students’ results are exceptional.
Just over 80 per cent of her Year 7 Science class attained VHA results in Semester 1 this year. About half of her Science, Research and Technology (SRT) Year 10 students, and her Year 7 Human Technologies class also achieved VHAs.
As Kirwan State High School’s STEM coordinator Jennifer arranged for an Australian Defence Force Engineer to speak to SRT students studying Aerodynamics about future career opportunities, helped students gain first-hand experience with the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy and has introduced a program in which senior students mentor junior students in robots, programming, experiments and data collection to design solutions for real-world challenges.
Principal Meredith Wenta says Jennifer is an outstanding early career teacher whose deep scientific knowledge is used to engage students in rich scientific learning.
"Students in her classes love her enthusiasm, her creativity and her passion for Science," Meredith says.
“In just her second year of teaching she is already a leader in the areas of science curriculum development and pedagogy,” she says.
“Her connections to the wider scientific community provide opportunities for students.”
“Jennifer is a wonderful teacher who inspires outstanding student learning.”
Jennifer also supports school community events including Livin, Relay for Life and The Cure Starts Now.
Congratulations Jennifer on being a finalist.