Ten minutes with our Head of Junior School
Why did you choose education?
I didn’t – education chose me. From my earliest memories, I lined up my dolls and sister to create my first classroom. Even at that age I understood the need for order, structure and fun if learning was to happen.
I have always loved learning and then sharing my new found insights with others. My Mum has said that any project I have undertaken has always involved all in my sphere. I have been collaborative, inclusive and able to delegate from a young age.
Do you think you could define a typical Abbotsleigh Junior School girl?
This is a difficult question as I truly believe each Abbotsleigh girl is characterised and highly valued for being unique and different. We don’t have a cookie cutter methodology where an Abbotsleigh girl is easily typified. Yet having said that, I would claim that we aim for each of our girls to be lovers of learning, prepared to robustly tackle challenges, empathic to the needs of others and keen to make a positive difference in their world.
You are well known for your passion for the School and the girls; what else are you passionate about?
I find that whatever I give myself to, I do with great passion and energy. I don’t really know any other way. I am optimistic by nature and love to see the great outcomes that are possible when opportunities are embraced with purpose, energy and gritty determination.
If I had to give you a list, it would include:
- Learning: I love collecting knowledge, skills and understandings in almost any realm. I am fascinated by the ancient Egyptian culture, yet equally keen to do all possible to learn how to preserve our planet. To this end, I am really looking forward to studying at the London Business School in July this year to grow my leadership skills.
- Leading: As a young teacher, I was dedicated to and passionate about leading a classroom so that my children achieved great success and became enthralled with learning. As Head of Junior School, I am devoted to supporting the learning of my colleagues so that they can be the best of educators. As president of the Independent Primary School Heads of Australia, I have been dedicated to working with politicians and other educational leaders to improve the learning outcomes for teachers and children throughout Australia.
- Exploring: I love seeking out new destinations and trying to determine how the people in these diverse cultures think, act and behave. This next break I am off to Iceland and Scandinavia to climb through ice caves, bath in hot springs and explore the fjords. Yet I am equally excited about understanding the history and current day realities for these people.
What makes you happy – a colour; a hobby; a movie?
I am happiest when with family and friends. I love connecting with people, whether when travelling or entertaining at home. I have lifelong friendships that I cherish and enjoy nothing better than sharing a long lunch with family and friends.
If you could make a wish, what would you wish for?
That we were all better at problem solving so that the injustices of poverty, discrimination and inequality could be resolved. Our world has such potential to sustain us all if only we could think more creatively, inventively and selflessly.