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Teacher Tuesday: Mr Stephen Monaghan

This year our Primary School welcomed Mr Stephen Monaghan as the new Deputy Head of Primary (Wellbeing). Mr Monaghan brings with him a wealth of experience in different areas and is looking forward to fostering good relationships within our community and nurturing a love of learning among students.

My teaching journey began after I finished my English and Media degree at Leeds University. I volunteered at the primary school I attended as a child, on the outskirts of Leeds, and soon became a teaching assistant working with a student with learning needs. I found the job extremely rewarding and ‘caught the bug’ for teaching.

My Primary School teacher, Mrs Gill Davis, also deserves the credit for lighting the teaching fire in me. I still remember her strumming her guitar back in Year 3 and making learning feel like a fun adventure. She genuinely cared about her students, even outside the classroom. Eventually I ended up teaching at a school where she was the head teacher – a somewhat bizarre, but thoroughly enjoyable experience.

Shortly after working as a teaching assistant, I completed a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) in York, which is where I met my wife, Charlotte (who is also a teacher). Following this, I worked at an inner-city Leeds school as a graduate teacher, before returning to my old primary school once again. I spent five happy years there and during this time, I completed a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and a Master’s in Teaching Mathematics. Both qualifications have been invaluable in my teaching career.

In the autumn of 2014, I applied for a job in Melbourne at St Kevin’s College and was fortunate to start in January 2015. It was a bit daunting, having never been to Australia, but my wife and I were happy to start a new adventure.

Australia became an immersive experience, not only professionally, but culturally. I enthusiastically embraced school life, engaging in coaching various sports including rugby, soccer, and tennis. Beyond the school gates, my wife and I savoured the eclectic offerings of Melbourne, from its vibrant arts scene to entertaining concerts and of course…sports. We spent many of our holidays travelling around a variety of wine regions sampling the delicious offerings.

In 2017, we returned to the UK, where I focused my Mathematics expertise at White Rose Education; supporting students and teachers across the UK and parts of Europe with numeracy education. However, the allure of Melbourne called us back in 2018, where I resumed my role at St Kevin’s College. Over the years, my journey at the school has seen me wear multiple hats— from classroom teacher to roles as diverse as Numeracy Co-ordinator, Extension teacher, STEM Co-ordinator, Head of Year level, and ultimately, as the Deputy Director of Learning and Teaching. Each role has offered invaluable insights and a robust understanding of the learning process.

Having just returned from Year 5 camp, I am looking forward to getting to know and working with all students and supporting each students’ love of learning. I am excited to be to joining a wonderful community of people who have the best interests of the students at heart. Everyone I have met, so far, has been welcoming and made me feel at home straight away. Life in South West of Western Australia is rather different to metro Melbourne and distinctly different to Yorkshire, but yet again, as a family – Charlotte, my son Darcy and soon to arrive baby girl – are excited about another adventure!


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