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A Teacher’s Perspective

“Children like Connor are why I teach. He is just amazing. It’s so incredibly rewarding.”

Vanessa Ramsden, Geography Teacher

The core of our work at Reigate Grammar School is to care for and support each individual child, and nurture their unique blend of talents and abilities. We want them to flourish, enjoy their school days and be prepared for a happy and successful adult life. We want them to have excellent academic outcomes which open doors of opportunity and pathways to success. Our teachers are experts in their field and have the skills and experience to pass on their knowledge. Day to day, our teachers are the ones supporting our pupils and helping them navigate their paths.

Vanessa, an experienced Geography teacher here at RGS, knows first-hand how transformative bursaries can be on children and how donations to the Changing Lives campaign can help.

Without our teachers making learning exciting and help children fulfil their potential, we wouldn’t be able to change lives.

“As a teacher, I have seen the massive benefits to children on receipt of bursaries and to all their classmates. Connor is a perfect example.

I started teaching him at the start of this year and within a minute of walking into the classroom; I could tell how much he wanted to learn. He has the most amazing thirst for knowledge! He sits right at the front, his little eyes are bright, and he just loves it.

Connor has come so far in just a year. He is a different kid – he has come in at the beginning saying, I’m rubbish, I can’t do geography, now he says he loves geography, ‘I can do it, it’s really easy, I’m really interested in geography.’

I love the perspective Connor brings to our lessons. He has made everyone more accepting, kind and even competitive. His desire to do his best has rubbed off on everyone. There are real benefits to the other children in the class because having him brings more diversity, and this is more like real life. The rest of the class have accepted him brilliantly, and have taken him under their wing. From a teacher’s perspective, it is so rewarding to see.

Connor appreciates things that other people don’t, so if you give him the tiniest bit of help, he grasps and goes for it and he will take every opportunity he has to do the best he can.

One of my favourite memories was when Connor earnt a merit in class. It was as if I had given him a diamond. He was so thrilled, he ran around the classroom delighted. It is so rewarding. He is just wonderful and I know he will always try his hardest and that one day he will be achieving ‘level 9s’ (A*s). He is already verbally one of the best children I teach so I can just imagine what it will be like when we help him to get it all down on paper.

Like everyone, there are unique challenges that Connor will face. Forming strong friendships will be important. He has some really good friends now and he knows how special they are. He is very self aware – sometimes he mentions that he is different and that he doesn’t have things that others have, this could be a challenge as he gets older and something we will work hard to support him with.

When you meet Connor, there is something special about him. When you meet someone who has come through adversity as he has in such a positive way, it gives you faith in humanity. I love the fact that he is here.

I hope for a future where any bright child, no matter their background or circumstances can thrive here at RGS.”

Gifts in wills will help us to continue this vital work – allowing us to give more children that are talented the chance they need in life through education. That is why we are immensely grateful to everyone who decides to leave a gift in their will to Reigate Grammar School.

Your support means teachers, like Vanessa, can support pupils make the most of their talents and abilities. Giving our students a strong moral purpose will prepare them to go out and make the world a better place.

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