Miss Cole – Lead Teacher for Outdoor and Adventurous Education
Outdoor education is an integral part of the curriculum and works to help develop the character of our pupils.
Miss Cole has a background working in the outdoors and previously held a position at an outdoor centre on the Dorset coast, this led to her passion for teaching and decision to pursue and complete a Secondary Science PGCE at Cambridge University.
“The experience of teaching adventurous outdoor activities from climbing and abseiling to A-Level biology fieldwork on the rocky shore sparked my interest in education.”
“I am really excited about being able to enthuse the St Bees School pupils about outdoor activities, especially hill walking given our proximity to the Lake District with its spectacular range of mountains.”
Outside of her teaching time Miss Cole is a keen walker and climber. A couple of her adventures have involved climbing up a 6,478m mountain in Nepal and traversed the Cuillin Ridge (Isle of Skye). You might also find her ticking off the Wainwright summits – with 33 to go.
Mrs Hall – Mathematics, Physics and Computing
Mrs Hall has a background in engineering. After graduating from the University of Liverpool with an Engineering degree she was employed by BNFL (as it was known at the time) to work as an engineering graduate. She worked as an engineering manager from 1996 until 2003 when she had her 3rd child.
“During my career break I started to tutor a few children in Maths and Physics and I found that I had a real love for teaching.”
She then went on to study for a PGCE in secondary maths and retrained to become a secondary teacher in 2009.
“My passion for Maths and Physics started at school. I had two amazing and very enthusiastic teachers in these subjects and it fuelled my own love of the subjects.”
“My main goal is to help the children of today have a positive view of Maths and Science and to eliminate the view that these are subjects mainly for boys.”
As well as her busy teaching schedule Mrs Hall is the director of a local charity looking to develop a short break centre for families with children with special needs in West Cumbria. You might also find her singing with the Whitehaven Committed to Rock Choir, performing to raise money for many local and national charities.
Mrs Zhang – Mandarin Chinese
Mrs Zhang has worked in several sectors covering government, business, media and academia in both China and the UK. With an academic background initially in Environmental Management, her passion for teaching stemmed from childhood. The opportunity came for a career change and to become a teacher.
“I really enjoy sharing with people and I love learning from people including our young students. I love language and culture. Whilst my passion has always been there, my Chinese teaching experience started more than 25 years ago when I tutored fellow students in Beijing Language and Culture University, China.”
Across her teaching experience her pupils have ranged from the age of 5 to 65. Mrs Zhang was also selected as the only local teacher contracted for the five Confucius Institutes in North West England.
“One aspect I am fascinated about is the international vision St Bees School has, which I would interpret as ‘when the West meets East’. This also perfectly fits into my personal and career experience.”
When not teaching you will hear Mrs Zhang on CANDO FM as a Voluntary Radio Presenter. She is also a keen volunteer of the RSPB and a member of Millom Amateur Drama.
Ms Pink – English and Drama
Ms Pink has a background in journalism and teaching. After completing a degree in English and Drama at Edge Hill University, Ms Pink pursued her career in journalism, before going on to study for a postgraduate qualification in magazine and book publishing at Watford College. Ms Pink went on to secure an editorial role on a Ski magazine in London. After returning to the North West of England she worked for local newspapers as a senior reporter.
“It was during this time I was invited to deliver a few classes at the local further education college as part of a journalism course they ran. I enjoyed the experience so much, I decided that, at some point in my life, I would go on to teach English.”
After a spell teaching English at Carlisle College she moved to move to Singapore to lead and teach Theatre Studies and Drama in a Junior College (sixth form). Since her return from Singapore she continued to teach, before joining St Bees School.
“I felt very drawn to the international ethos of the new school with its fusion curriculum and plans for the future.”
“When the opportunity to teach English and Drama at St Bees School arose, I felt compelled to apply. With its progressive outlook, I see it as a unique opportunity and I am delighted to be part of such a committed and passionate team at St Bees School.”
As well as her passion for teaching Ms Pink has a particular interest in Asian culture. Ms Pink is also a bell ringer and vice-chair of her Parish Council. She recently directed a play for Penrith Players which was performed at Theatre by the Lake on 20th October and will run again at Penrith Play House on Friday, 26th October.