Tell us a bit about your background and what you do at Compass.
At Compass, I am a Schools Engagement Manager, with a focus on helping Independent schools. My role is to help schools understand the benefits of Compass, show them how the different features work to cater to their school needs and hopefully welcome them to the Compass community. Prior to joining Compass I worked in Education Leadership for 20 years in a variety of different roles, including Head of Senior School and Assistant Principal Operations.
What’s your favourite product/feature within Compass?
I loved using Chronicle and Chronicle Digest. The ability to monitor wellbeing and behaviour quickly and effectively was hugely beneficial in my Leadership roles. I wish I had Compass at every school I worked in as it would have significantly decreased the volume of emails I used to receive every day.
What do you see as the biggest benefit that Compass offers, whether it’s to students, school staff or families?
I think a couple of the biggest benefits are ease of use and having one all-inclusive platform. The user interface is very easy to navigate and you don’t have to keep clicking to find what you are looking for. The fact that you can do so much in one platform from recording attendance, writing Chronicle entries, approving/booking excursions and my favorite - seeing your timetable, extras and yard duties all on the landing page - are all game-changing features for busy teachers and leaders.
What made you decide to pursue a career in education?
I fell into teaching. I always loved sport and coaching (still do) so I studied a Bachelor of Applied Science - Physical Education with no real understanding that at the end of that course I would be a teacher. I spent some time working in basketball/coaching and then that landscape changed and I was offered a teaching role that also involved coaching so I took it and as they say, the rest is history.
What is one of your fondest memories from your school days?
School was school! I always loved sport carnivals and playing any sport I could to avoid being in a classroom. I had some great old-school teachers along the way who had the attitude of “take no prisoners” which I loved.
What kind of student were you?
I was your average easy-going student who could have done better if I applied myself, but I never had that academic drive like my sister. I was also pretty shy through high school so I was happy to be in the background. I did have a teacher tell me that I was a “Confused Jock” - intelligent but more interested in sport.
What was your favourite subject, and why?
PE was by far my favorite subject, closely followed by Maths as I have always loved numbers and was good at it. I come from a family of accountants so I was never allowed to use a calculator until I reached Year 10, meaning I had to become good at mental arithmetic.
What would you be doing, if not working at Compass?
Probably, still working in a Leadership role in a school, deciding what to do next!
If Compass was available to you when you were at school, do you think it would have changed your learning experience? How?
Hard to say, when I was in Year 12 we had one computer in the library with internet so the times were so different that it is hard to imagine a school with the level of technology that students have access to!
Surprise & delight us. Tell us something interesting about yourself.
I think I am a fairly boring standard kind of guy. I did nearly leave school in Year 10 to become a Chef so I still have a love of cooking.
What are some of the qualities of your most memorable teacher(s)?
They were just good decent human beings who knew you and were always willing to listen and they treated you like a person. The good ones also had a sense of humor and were happy to have a laugh with you.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
“Life’s not fair get used to it” was my Dad’s favorite piece of advice. Now that I have my own kids I have my own version “Life’s not fair get used to it, and the sooner you do, the better off you will be”. (Proud Dad moment, my kids can recite that back to me now)