Well-deserved congratulations to Andria Zafirakou for winning the Global Teacher Award which attracted 30 thousand nominees from some 170 countries. The award not only recognises Andria’s excellence as a practitioner and as an inspirational force for her students, but as she said is a recognition of the crucially important role played by all teachers. In her acceptance speech Andria made some important points which are worth highlighting. She drew attention to the tough and challenging lives of her students in Brent. For these students the school was more than the location for the statutory provision of education it was a safe haven which tries to meet their needs, celebrates their diversity and nurtures and supports their right to be the adults they aspire to be. This key role for the school stands in contradiction to the funding crisis which is currently engulfing all our schools. Schools need outstanding teachers but they also need the financial and material infrastructure to enable them to offer the extended care and support vulnerable students need and should have a right to. Andria is a teacher of Art and Textiles and as she pointed out this is one of the low priority areas for schools always the first to have budget cuts in the face of financial constraints. Decades of equating educational success with progress in the core subjects and the marginalisation of students’ rights for curriculum breadth and balance have distorted the curriculum offer made by schools. The power these subjects to inspire, their ability to promote success across the curriculum and the right of all students to have a full curriculum experience means that educational provision is the poorer if they do not have the emphasis they deserve.