Having worked in mainstream physical education for 14 years I decided to follow my passion for working with children who have special education needs and began employment as a 6th form class teacher at the Mary Rose Academy at Easter in 2015. This then led to my successful application and interview for the role as Head of 6th Form, which I started in September 2016.
My older brother Julian has special education needs. Having watched him grow and develop at an amazing special school in Norfolk and having loved our time growing up together, is what fuelled my desire to work in this area. I have volunteered for the charity SENSE providing week long activity holidays for people of all ages and a range of disabilities across the UK. I have done this for nearly twenty years now.
I am married and have a son Otto who was born in November 2015. This has slightly curbed my hunger for adrenalin rushes and sporting competition, although I still like to dabble when I have the time!!. Over the years I have turned my hand to a number of different physical challenges, enjoying my time as an area standard cricketer, club football player, a 1st team rugby captain in Somerset, an international standard judoka representing GB, as well as running 3 London marathons and completing two tandem skydives for charity.
What excites you about your role within the Academy?
When I started my training as a PE teacher at De Montfort University Bedford in 1997, I was asked by my tutor, “What would your dream job be?”. I said, “A teacher in a specialist sports, for children with special educational needs, by the sea…………….. but I know that jobs like that probably don’t exist!!”. Well here I am living that dream!! When the Head of 6th form role became available, I was very excited to apply, as I see our role in 6th form as incredibly important. We are almost like a ‘finishing school’. We take all of the skills the students have developed from key stage 1 through to key stage 4 and fine tune them, using them in a variety of different contexts, with the aim being students utilising this prior learning to be as independent and effective at communication as possible. Having the chance to positively influence the lives of our students before their next challenge, be that college, day services, or work is a great privilege and one that I take incredibly seriously, as I have seen first-hand with my brother the wonderful outcomes that can be achieved with outstanding educational experiences.