Life before Teesside High School
Originally from Hull, I moved to the North East to study Ancient History at Newcastle University. I then completed my PGCE in History at the University of Hull before taking up my first teaching position at St. Thomas More Catholic School in Blaydon where I spent the next seven years, by which time I held the position of Assistant Head of House and was a member of the school’s teaching and learning team. Following this I moved to Singapore to teach in an international school, originally taking the position of Head of Humanities and then an SLT position as Head of Teaching, Learning and Assessment. After three years abroad, and following the birth of my daughter (and the start of a global pandemic!), the decision was made to return to the UK and take up the role of Faculty Leader at Teesside High School.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I enjoy having the opportunity to build and develop relationships with the students I teach. I enjoy supporting the students to develop their opinions about the subjects I teach as well as the world around them. I particularly enjoy encouraging students to become independent, Socratic learners: questioning not only the content of subjects they are studying, so that they can learn more, but also their own ways of thinking so that they can understand themselves and the world they live in. I truly believe that the role of education is to create well rounded, intelligent, respectful and internationally minded individuals – it is my privilege to have a role in helping students to achieve this.
What do you enjoy most about Teesside High School?
I love the fact that I get the chance to understand each and every one of my students intricately, due to the community feel of the school. I feel I understand each individual student I teach – their strengths, interests, talents, areas for development and the individual learning requirements they each have. Again, this allows me to build strong working relationships where I have the opportunity to spend time helping each student to achieve their potential and also allows me to build strong personal relationships so that I can support them in their emotional wellbeing and development.
What is your favourite time of the year?
Having spent an extended time in a climate where there are no seasons, is either hot and dry or hot and wet, the opportunity to experience various types of weather has been a welcome return! Spring is probably my favourite time of the year – flowers are starting to bloom again, the weather is starting to get a bit warmer and the dark winter nights are giving way to lighter evenings. I also have the chance to enjoy some nice weather before the hayfever season starts in the summer and turns me into a red eyed, runny nosed hermit!
What do others say about you?
Depends on who you ask! Students would say that I am empathetic and approachable and that I genuinely believe, and want the best for, every single student that I teach. Colleagues would say that I am supportive and have high standards. Friends would say that I am generous and a good listener. My wife would say a number of things, amongst them that I am a decent cook!