The country was only weeks away from going into its first lockdown when Learning Support Assistant Kelly Langton gave birth to her third child.
As if that joyful event didn’t leave her busy enough, Kelly was also completing Level 5 of her Foundation Degree in Supporting Teaching and Learning, at University Centre Leeds, at the time.
Thanks to her dedication and willingness to adapt she nevertheless went on to complete that course later in 2020: and is now working to achieve a BA (Hons) in Children and Young People’s Care and Education.
Kelly, who works at a Specialist Inclusive Learning Centre (SILC), only has her dissertation left to complete her BA and her tutors couldn’t be more proud of her.
HE Childcare Programme Manager Vicki Marshment said: “In her second year Kelly became pregnant with her third child and she worried that her pregnancy would leave her behind with her work.
“But since lockdown in March, 2020 she has worked hard at home despite home-schooling two children and taking care of a newborn. She fully embraced online learning and made use of every resource available to her to get through her foundation degree.”
Kelly had some serious doubts about proceeding with the BA, but her tutors managed to allay those fears and give her the self-belief she needed.
BEYOND THE COMFORT ZONE
Vicki said: “Kelly was worried about leaving her daughter so young and struggling with her confidence, she did not feel she was able to complete a level 6 course.
“However the lockdown meant that teaching was delivered online and Kelly yet again fully utilised the online resources and has never missed a session.
“Her confidence has grown this year and despite her apprehensions she pushed herself out of her comfort zone and is achieving at a high level. Kelly is an amazing student and we are ever so proud of her brilliant progress this year.”
Kelly’s work – she is studying for her BA part-time – involves supporting children and young people, aged 2-19, who have Special Educational Needs and/or disabilities.
She said: “Within my current role I have continued to try and improve myself which is why I chose to complete the Foundation degree.
“I never thought I had the ability to go any further until I went to the progression meeting, it made me think that I was able to continue with my education and complete the BA (Hons) in Children and Young People’s Care and Education.
“I have now completed year one of the 18 months and only have my dissertation to complete to gain my degree qualification. Every time I receive a result I am completely shocked at how far I have come and I have begun to have confidence in my abilities.”
Kelly added: “I am now determined to gain a high score for my dissertation to gain the best graded degree that I can. I would not have got this far without the support and encouragement from my tutors and a friend, who has been proofreading my work since level 5.”
Kelly has been nominated for a Star Award, by Vicki and HE Lecturer Nikki Daly, in recognition of her hard work and determination to overcome challenges.