Congratulations to Gad’s Director of Studies and Head of Geography, Mrs Stephanie Burke, who has graduated as a Doctor of Education – testimony that the Gad’s family are lifelong learners.

Dr Burke completed the professional doctorate while studying part-time at Canterbury Christchurch University and in her spare time for five years.

Headmaster Mr Paul Savage, said: “We are all very proud of Dr Burke’s fantastic achievement and her success will inspire our students to focus, work hard and commit to their goals, both in and out of school.

“My team and I will greatly benefit from Dr. Burke’s recent findings on teaching and philosophy and thesis on the values and virtues of the aims of education.”

Dr Burke, who also has a Masters in Education, specialising in Leadership and Management for Learning, which she passed with distinction, said: “The more I have studied, the more I realise how much I don’t know and that just makes me curious to learn more.”

“It has been a challenge but so worthwhile to balance university and work commitments with the other interests I have such as being a trustee of a charity, joining the Chartered College of Teaching Council and playing flute and piccolo for the Folkestone Symphony Orchestra.

“I hope my students see it is possible to combine work and school, study and extra-curricular activities and hobbies, without having to give up things that you really enjoy.

“I was advised to stop playing for the orchestra but I find music and being a member of a non-academic group really aids my wellbeing, so I made it work.

“At times it’s really difficult to do, but it is always possible to find ways through – just keep working hard, have systems in place to keep organised and try not to give up!”

Dr Burke is a trustee at Homeless Care in Maidstone as well as an elected council member of the Chartered College of Teaching and its ‘Education and Research’ committee.

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