No Hugs & Kisses

Guest blogger Russell Brown presents his leaving speech for you all to enjoy.  What a fantastic career and a wonderful man – we will miss you so much (but I suspect we’ll also see you in school soon!).

How many end of year leaving day speeches have you had to sit through? Now it’s my turn and there isn’t going to be one! So let’s blog it! Quite good really as you don’t have to laugh in the right places, you don’t even have to read it and certainly no hugs and kisses at the end.

I have worked in 8 schools in 4 countries, the last 26 years in Southampton and probably about 20 years at Regents Park.

I say about 20 as I started as a supply teacher, so no real starting point, and ended up as part of the leadership team. That’s not because I’m ambitious, but because I wasn’t very good at saying no. As part of the LT team I now know that “Why don’t you go for that job, you’d be good at it” means “we have a vacancy and you could fill it”.  I started at Regents Park covering science and German.  I have been curriculum leader for languages, then second for business and enterprise when we were a specialist business and humanities school. I then became a progress leader for KS4, Sam, who wasn’t our head then, said “I’d be good at that job” – you know what she meant – and that led to a data role and I guess the person who does the data gets to be part of the leadership team.

So what have I achieved? I did design an assessment scheme after KS3 levels were abolished and it seemed to work really well at the time, but one thing I have learned is that nothing lasts for ever in education. I have heard it said that ideologies and methods move in circles, but I think it is more finding out what works well in the circumstances you find yourself in.  I don’t think teaching is about achieving anyway, it’s guiding young people and helping them develop. Most of the results a teacher will never know about. Maybe an idea or thought is planted that comes to fruition years later.   Hopefully I have helped some people, not just the young people I have taught, but also the staff I’ve been lucky enough to work alongside.

A blog I read on this site claims that teaching can be a lonely job. I get the bit that you can sometimes be the only adult in a room, but I ‘ve never found it lonely. On the contrary it is being part of teams that I will miss. Sometimes that team is me and a class trying to make progress or be successful in an exam, my department team, my leadership team and the whole school team. Perhaps those colleagues who coerced me into different roles were being better team players than I gave them credit for. Although I ended up teaching more business studies I will always say I am a language teacher, I wish Emma and the MFL team all the best. The team that I felt closest too was the B&E team, but that team went its separate ways years ago.   The hard bit for me will no longer being a part of any team RPCC.

Thanks for the memories

No Hugs and Kisses.

Published by Natalie Reed

Assistant Headteacher - Teaching & Learning

3 thoughts on “No Hugs & Kisses

  1. A wonderful teacher, wonderful leader and a wonderful colleague! Au revoir Mr Brown! Don’t be a stranger!


  2. It has been a pleasure and a privilege working alongside you all these years! Enjoy your ‘me-time’ now Russell.


  3. I feel lucky to have had the opportunity to meet you and to work alongside you! Thank you for your support, your kindness and your invaluable insight. You need a project to keep you busy and happy- I wish you find it! I know you will. Once a teacher, always a teacher!


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