Staff Stories Series


Gillian Butler, Head of English is our next Staff Stories guest who loves to travel and we find out more about her love for teaching from a young age.

Where did you grow up?
Dunfermline in Fife, Scotland.

If you were stranded on a desert island, which two items could you not live without?
My pillow- I’m not good if I haven’t slept well.  A kettle and tea bags are also a necessity.

Do you have a secret talent or party trick?
Not really a secret but I’m pretty good at cartwheels.

Do you have a celebrity crush?
At the moment Richard Madden tops the list.  On another day I might say Cillian Murphy.

What is your favourite vacation and why? 
I’ve travelled a lot so I have a number of favourite places.  I love a beach holiday but Boston and Copenhagen are amongst my favourite cities.

What was your favourite school subject?
I should probably say English… I did love PE at school as well though and French.

What was the last thing you read?
I’ve just finished re-reading ‘The Penelopiad’ by Margaret Atwood – this is for teaching though.  I’m also reading Lessons by Ian McEwan.

What interested you about your subject before becoming a teacher in this field?
I actually went to university to study French and Education in order to become a French teacher.  English was my 3rd subject to make up credits but I enjoyed it so much more than French when I got to uni that I ended up switching degrees.

What did you want to be when you grew up?
I pretty much always wanted to be a teacher, although what I wanted to teach changed.  There was a phase when I was about 10 when I wanted to be a sports commentator but the only sports I was prepared to commentate on were gymnastics and athletics.

Are you an early bird or a night owl?
Early bird

What music do you like listening to?
I have quite diverse tastes from Indie to pop to 90s dance music.  I don’t listen to much new music and haven’t really done so since about 2015.

Do you have any hobbies or interests outside of school?
My main hobby is Crossfit:  a combination of weightlifting, gymnastics and circuit training. I particularly like the weightlifting and gymnastic elements.  I can do a decent handstand and clean and jerk around 50kg.

A fun fact about yourself or something that someone else may not know about you.
I was Scottish Universities’ Ladies Tenpin bowling champion in 1998.

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