Search Opens for Top Learning Professional in Scotland

Susan Morton
Category: Press Releases

Nominations open today for Scottish Book Trust’s Learning Professional Award 2018. This award recognises a teacher or librarian working to transform attitudes towards reading and writing amongst children and young people.

Schools and libraries across the country are urged to nominate an exceptional colleague who works tirelessly to inspire a love of reading or writing.

The award was created by Scottish Book Trust, the national charity transforming lives through reading and writing. It is one of two annual Scottish Book Trust Awards run in association with Browns Books for Students. The other award celebrates and recognises the Outstanding Achievement made by an author or illustrator.

Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said: “We know there is excellent work happening across Scotland to encourage young people to read for pleasure and we want to celebrate it.

“If one of your colleagues has gone the extra mile to make books a big part of pupils’ lives, or you have been involved in an innovative project which has transformed attitudes to reading in your school, we want to hear from you.”

The Scottish Book Trust Awards were launched in autumn 2016 when schools and libraries across Scotland were invited to tell us about the amazing work being done to inspire young readers.

The winner of the inaugural Learning Professional Award, presented at an event in the National Library of Scotland in May 2017, was Susan Morton, librarian at Inverclyde Academy in Greenock. She was joined by Mairi Hedderwick, writer and illustrator of the hugely popular Katie Morag series, who was presented with the Outstanding Achievement Award.

Susan Morton was recognised for the significant impact she has had on her school community, where she has transformed attitudes towards books and reading among the pupils.

Since she took up the position in 2016, Susan has revitalised what was a neglected school library to create a vibrant hub, with pupils fully engaged in choosing new purchases. She has quadrupled the number of books in the library, leading to a similar leap in the number of pupils borrowing books.

Speaking about her award as nominations for 2018 opened, Susan Morton said: “I was genuinely gobsmacked. To know that the school values what I do, enough to put me forward, meant a great deal to me. The nomination made me realise that what I do is really appreciated by the school community and winning the award made it all incredibly special.”

This year there is an added incentive to nominate as the school or library where the winning Learning Professional works will receive £500 to spend with Browns Books for Students.

Nic Hales, Marketing Manager at Browns Books for Students, said: “We at Browns Books for Students are very pleased to be working in conjunction with Scottish Book Trust to highlight such an important award, not only to schools within Scotland but also the wider community. We are very excited to find out who the winner of the award will be!”

Jenny Niven, Head of Literature, Languages and Publishing at Creative Scotland, said: “Teachers and Librarians play a crucial role in providing the skills and knowledge to help young people discover reading and its ability to stretch the imagination and expand our horizons. This award is a fantastic opportunity to return the thanks and celebrate some of Scotland’s most inspiring learning professionals.”

Nominations can be made online at and close at 5pm on 22 November 2017. The nominations will be considered by the Scottish Book Trust Awards judging panel and the winner will be announced at the Scottish Book Trust Awards event next year, when the Outstanding Achievement Award 2018 will also be presented.


Notes to editors

For more information, please contact Lindsay Clydesdale, Media and PR Manager at Scottish Book Trust, on or 0131 524 0175 or 07766 725595.


Scottish Book Trust

Scottish Book Trust is a national charity changing lives through reading and writing. We inspire and support the people of Scotland to read and write for pleasure through programmes and outreach work that include:

  • Gifting books to every child in Scotland to ensure families of all backgrounds can share the joy of books at home.
  • Working with teachers to inspire children to develop a love of reading, creating innovative classroom activities, book awards and author events.
  • Supporting Scotland’s diverse writing community with our training, awards and writing opportunities.
  • Funding a range of author events for the public to enjoy and promoting Scottish writing to people worldwide.   @scottishbktrust


Scottish Book Trust Awards

The Scottish Book Trust Awards, in association with Browns Books for Students, will be awarded annually. More information is available at


Browns Books for Students

Information on the award sponsor, Browns Books for Students, is available at


Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information about Creative Scotland please visit  Follow us @creativescots and

Creative Scotland