So sad to hear that my old Head of Department in my first teaching job at Swavesey Village College has died.
Sheila Ginn was a legend.
The informal interview I had with her on the day of the appointment set the tone for the future. I had a great feeling for the school from the start and she was a second mother to Colin Pheysey and I!
I remember on the first day of term when I was feeling very apprehensive, she called me into the departmental room for an urgent meeting. I thought I’d done something wrong before I’d started! She said in very serious tones that there was something she needed to share with me… she went on to say that there was a very serious rule in the department and she only wanted to have to tell me it once… ‘First one in the room puts the kettle on and the biscuits are in this drawer here!’
I could tell from the selection of biscuits on offer that this was a cut above what I had been putting up with as a student.
We never had a cross word in four years and have kept in touch via Christmas cards and family updates over the years. Until recently her beautiful and distinctive copperplate script was always waited on at Christmas.
She was a great HoD and was always positive and supportive, especially if you wanted to experiment with new ideas. Her focus was always giving every child the best opportunities and she did it with a legendary good grace and humour.
I would have liked to have told her one more time how much I appreciated her good humour and support at the start of my career.
A word also for Chris Ginn. He is the essence of decency, both as a community police officer in his former career, and as a rock to Sheila in these difficult last years. I wish him and the family peace, health and happiness.
God bless Sheila and thank you. xx