The Australian Education Awards are presented to top-performing government and non-government schools, principals, department heads, and teachers for their outstanding achievements in making a difference to the lives of young Australians.
Keegan was nominated in the Primary School Teacher of the Year – Government category along with four other teachers.
The winners will be announced on August 11, in Sydney.
Recounting his reaction to being nominated, Keegan said he first heard the news through a congratulatory email that arrived in his junk mail.
“I got the email a couple of months ago – and it went into my junk, so I actually didn’t see it for a while. I looked at it and I initially thought it was spam!”
It wasn’t until a fellow staff member also congratulated him that he decided to search for the email once again.
He said he was ecstatic to receive such great news.
“I was really humbled – confused at first, but also very, very happy. I had to force my partner to take a photo of me – holding up the little email to prove that I got it. The photographic evidence was good!”
This is Keegan’s fifth year formally teaching since beginning at university as a drama teacher at SOPAS.
Keegan then jumped from the private system to now work at Pallara State School.
He also hosts an after-school history club every Tuesday where he invites many special guests to speak to the children.
This gives them an in-depth understanding of history beyond the humanities and social sciences (HASS) curriculum, Keegan explained.
Speakers so far have included former Prime Minister John Howard, Calamvale Councillor Angela Owen, former Olympic athlete Helen Searle, and local Vietnam veterans from Forest Lake RSL, including Richard McLaren.
“I would just encourage anyone that wants to be a teacher or is interested in it to give it a go. It’s a really rewarding profession,” Keegan noted.