Houston teacher receives 2016 B.C. Art Teachers’ Association award

Paul Batley was nominated by fellow Houston Secondary School (HSS) teacher, Ted Beck, and Smithers Secondary School art teacher

Paul Batley with his grandson

Paul Batley was nominated by fellow Houston Secondary School (HSS) teacher, Ted Beck, and Smithers Secondary School art teacher, Perry Rath, for the 2016 B.C. Teachers’ Association award.

Batley has been a visual arts teacher at HSS for the past 28 years, and an educator for 40. Batley will be retiring at the end of this school year, June 2017.

Batley received the award at the University of Victoria, at the B.C. Teachers’ Association event, on Oct. 20 to Oct. 22.

“I wasn’t very comfortable with the idea,” humbly said Batley, when asked what receiving this award meant, “because I don’t do what I do to receive awards. But it was explained to me, by one of the people who wrote in to the Art Teachers Association,that it’s not really about me, it’s about recognizing art education, and education in general, teachers in general. And I just happened to be the one that received it this year.”

It is a conference that happens every year where various teachers and groups come together and listen to key note speakers,host small work shops to share teaching techniques, as well as recognize individuals within the education society.

“I personally believe that the best type of professional development is talking to your colleagues. So you get the conversation of the people in the room, who are attending with you, you listen to the art teacher who is giving the work shop, and then you all mingle and talk afterwards, which is brilliant,” commented Batley.

After retiring from public education, Batley will be transitioning to work solely for Houston’s victim services. He has been a volunteer for the organization for the past 25 years, and says he always dreamed of possibly taking it over as a part time job after retiring.

“I thought, I better not let this slide by,” said Batley.

Houston Secondary School may be loosing such an inspiring and influential educator, but given Batley’s set of skills and atrributes, the community is gaining a valuable victim services coordinator.