Honoured for work with children

PROUD: Ruth Simms (centre) with her supportive children Trudy and Alfred following the announcement of her AM.RUTH Simms has been awarded an AM in the general division of the Queen’s Birthday Honours.Mrs Simms from Nowra, who has worked with children for more than three decades, said on Monday the honour had hit home.“I feel really excited, now.“When I first found out, I wasn’t allowed to tell anyone so I just put the letter in a draw and forgot about it,” she said.“Now people know about it, I’m excited today and my children are as proud as punch.”Mrs Simms received her AM for service to education as an Aboriginal education officer supporting children and their families.Part of her nomination was for her contribution to state curriculum planning and to the community as an indigenous representative at local and international forums.Mrs Simms works at Nowra Primary School but has also spent time working through the Department of Education at regional level and with the department in Sydney.“When I was working in Sydney in the late 1980s I worked on a statewide program for Aboriginal students from kindergarten to year three,” she said.“We picked five schools across the state to work with, that was a big job.“I was specifically employed to work with Koori children but I work with all children.“I love what I do,” she said.“I have people who have stopped me in the street and thanked me because I helped their boy with reading.”Mrs Simms has made an impact internationally too, taking part in every World Indigenous Conference over the past 20 years where she has run workshops in Albuquerque and one in Hawaii.“I still work at Nowra Primary School, I really like my job, I work with good teachers and I’ve been around long enough to know good teachers.“My son’s a teacher at the school now, he’s been teaching for about 15 years,” she said.Mrs Simms is joined by Rex Worrell of Shoalhaven Heads, Ruth Richards of Ulladulla and Peter Hudson of Bendalong who received Order of Australia Medals. They were featured in Monday’s South Coast Register.This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.