AN ‘inspirational’ student who juggles her parental duties with academic commitments has won a national award.

Mum-of-one Anna Romanska embarked on a child care and education course at Nelson and Colne College shortly after arriving in the country from Poland.

The 26-year-old, who has a three-year-old son, progressed rapidly and is now studying for a Level 3 Diploma at the Scotland Road campus.

In recognition of her achievements she has won the prestigious National Heinemann and Nursery World Child Care Student of the Year Award, organised by Pearson Education.

Tutor Carol Dobson, who put her forward for the award, said: “Anna has been an exemplary student on the child care and education course.

“She has an exceptional work ethic and a real thirst for knowledge meaning that she gained a well deserved grade A in her first year.

“In her practical placements she has been outstanding, using her first language to help nurseries to work effectively with parents and help young children get the most out of their nursery experience.

“Her placement supervisors have said that her practice and enthusiasm when working in the classroom is inspirational. "It is all of these things which prompted me to put forward Anna for the award, as she is already a winner in the eyes of the college.”

Anna, who lives in Nelson, had to submit a piece of written work which demonstrated her ability to work with children and evaluate her own practice.

For the finals, she travelled to Pearson’s headquarters in Oxford, where she was judged against other competitors from colleges across the UK.

Judges included Liz Roberts, editor of Nursery World magazine; Penny Tassoni, popular child care author and Virginia Carter, Heinemann’s commissioning editor for child care.

Anna will receive a cheque for £350 and a year’s free subscription to Nursery World magazine.

Nelson and Colne College will get £350 of Heinemann vouchers.