I'm going to be asked some questions by members of the youth group at church on Sunday. Thought I'd better prepare some answers:
Do you have a teacher nickname?
Not as far as I know... though I'm a primary teacher. I think that's more a secondary thing. However, maybe I should do some research...!
What’s the meanest things that has happened to you by a pupil?
A child let my bicycle tyres down when I was in my first teaching post. It wasn't personal - just mischievous. I had a long walk home, though. Oh, in Kenya I was Deputy Head of a local school, in charge of collecting school fees, and received an 'anonymous' death threat once when I refused a student admission for frequent non-payment.
The issue of promoting Christianity in schools is a hot potato. What is your take on it?
Christianity is part of our British culture and yet it is often not taught properly. Other religions are. Not only that, but other religions are given glamour and mystery, whereas 'Churchianity' more than 'Christianity' is taught. That's ridiculous.
Do things go on in the staff room that would be disciplined if a schoolkid did it anywhere else in the school?
Oh yes. Cake and chocolate eating, for a start. The children are not allowed to bring sweets in to school. Then there was the time anyone who answered the phone had to include a particular word in the conversation. My word was 'windmill'. The staffroom was in uproar - people were crying with laughter and there was ABSOLUTELY NO DISCIPLINE WHATSOEVER. You can't have children behaving like that!
What is your favourite worship song and why?
Well, anything by Brian Doerksen, but probably my favourite is 'Today'. 'Today, I choose, to follow You. Today, I choose to give my life to you...' It's a wonderful reminder that following Jesus is a daily choice. I want to follow in the footsteps of Joshua, who is credited with those words.
Are there any specific prayer requests for your school or the teaching profession?
Pray for there to be a hunger for God among the teaching profession. Teachers are more influential than they imagine, but they need boldness and to be made spiritually aware of the wonderful opportunities which God gives them.
Pray for there to be a hunger for God among youngsters, so much so that they will voluntarily ask Christian staff for help in their search.
Pray for there to be a hunger for God among parents.