How has your move to the Isle of Man benefitted you?
Well, as a starter for 10, communication between the five main secondary schools is superb and this means you get the chance to work with a number of different colleagues and learn from them. We don’t really have a culture of competition between schools (okay, perhaps in sports fixtures!!) because we are all so proud to be ‘Islanders’ and just want the best for all students, whether they are in our school or at another. This creates a very healthy ‘sharing culture’ and a feeling that we all stick up for each other. Whilst I enjoyed my school in the UK, it was quite insular, and I didn’t feel there were too many opportunities to share good practice outside of our own walls. In addition to this, the Department of Education, Sport and Culture has backed me financially whenever I have asked to go on a course in the UK. To have this kind of support is incredible and helps us feel we are always progressing professionally.
What difference has living back in the Isle of Man made to your work-life balance?
I feel a completely different person than I was three years ago. My work-life balance is much healthier because Islanders tend to have their priorities right in this area. From day one, I was encouraged to work hard in school but to ‘relax hard’ out of it. The plethora of outdoor activities available to us means that we can escape our job at weekends in such a positive manner. There are naturally a range of activities in the UK but the accessibility of these opportunities is just better here. In addition, it never takes more than 10 minutes to travel to a friend’s house and that has been a lovely change for me - my social life is a hundred times better!