Students at All Saints Catholic College are no strangers to seeing camera crews dotted around the school, owing to our very own TV channel - 'All Saints TV'. However, a sense of intrigue spread up and down the corridors on Monday 14th November as a second film crew were spotted shooting footage. Those cameras belonged to the BBC, who had paid us a visit in order to film a special segment for their flagship evening programme, 'The One Show'.
Throughout the day, speculation mounted as to why the BBC cameras had chosen to spend a day with us. Afterall, it's not every day that this happens. Rumours began to swirl around the school that they were here to surprise a member of staff with some exciting news, but who was that member of staff and what was the big secret they were so determined to keep under wraps? Anyone lucky enough to be in the room for the announcement was sworn to secrecy and vowed not to speak about what they had been a part of until the episode had been broadcast.
On Friday 25th November it was time for that secret to be shared with the world, and so at 7:00pm staff, students and parents all tuned in to BBC1 to see All Saints Catholic College take pride of place on 'The One Show' and watch Mr O'Neill discover that he had been named Headteacher of the Year in a Secondary School at the Pearson National Teaching Awards.
Having been named as a Silver Winner earlier this year, Mr O'Neill knew that he was in the running to scoop the overall prize. However, the look on his face when he was told he was the Gold Award winner, in front of an ecstatic group of Year 7 students in our very own version of 'The One Show' studio, clearly showed that this was a huge surprise and that the secret had been superbly kept. Mission accomplished for all those who were in the know.
The Pearson National Teaching Awards are the 'Oscars' of the teaching profession, and this is a wonderful achievement for Mr O'Neill, testament to the incredible journey All Saints Catholic College has been on since he became Headteacher.
On behalf of everyone associated with All Saints Catholic College, congratulations Mr O'Neill.
WATCH below to see the moment that Mr O'Neill discovered the news.