Well hello there,
It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance! I’m Phil and I’m your local teacher consultant for Asia, which in plain terms means I work with all our educators on optimising their use of Education Perfect. I cannot tell you how much I learn from everyone by doing this. It’s awesome 🙂
Previously I was the Maths HoD at an international school here in Singapore for 5 years, and before that, I worked as a math teacher in the UK, Guernsey and Malaysia. Depending upon whether you count Guernsey on the international circuit or not, I’ve worked in international education for 8 or 9 years. My wife claims 8.
I have a beautiful 2-year-old daughter named Freya who I absolutely adore. I know, cliche dad warning. And another on the way in February, who no doubt will be just as mischievous.
Why become an EPeep?
My daughter is actually one of the main reasons I became an EPeep. The job allows me to work from home and the company has been utterly superb in allowing flexible time for me to spend with Freya in her most formative years. If you’re reading this you’re probably a teacher and can relate to the regimented schedule. Another reason I love being an EPeep is that our international team spans the globe, which is cool to say. But, practically speaking, those timezones are crazy. The team has been amazing at developing a positive and engaging team culture even with these obstacles. I’m the only member of our team in Singapore, but feel incredibly close to my colleagues despite their distance. Shout out to Francis and Aless in particular! Also part of the Asia team. And Jonte. Jonte is my favourite.
What does a typical day look like for you in your role?
So I chose this question because while I was working in education I had no idea what any of the app staff members I worked with did in the background.
So here’s for those folks like my old self. I have a lot of meetings with all types of educators. From class teachers to EdTech and Innovation leads of Educational groups.
This week I’m averaging 3 meetings a day. These meetings can range from training on how to use Education Perfect in a teacher’s context, to strategising adoption and data collection across schools. In between these, I have a lot of emails, which are usually follow-ups on projects we run in our schools. In busy periods I could receive 50 emails in a day. The rest of my time is spent on the app building bespoke curation for schools, or meeting with the internal team to learn and ideate better services. An example of my main project right now is trying to get as many of our Asia schools to integrate their SIS and Education Perfect so no one has to manage their classes on EP anymore; it’ll be automatically updated by your SIS! Love this aggregate time saver.
What are you most excited about? (work life)
If you’ll allow me some poorly disguised self-promotion? You gladly will? Fantastic. My excitement around EdTech only grew exponentially when joining EP and has sparked my article writing on LinkedIn. You can check out my newsletter here. Right now I’m most interested in Extended Reality (XR). Not least because a new acronym appears to be born every hour in the space! This is affecting every industry and so you can get lost if you don’t focus. But the implications of opening up our curricula by creating more tangible learning environments in tech is astounding. It’s something I never imagined being possible when I first started teaching. It feels antithetical almost to say a digital environment could be MORE tangible.
What are you most excited about? (personal life)
Let me share with you what I’m currently playing on. Tennis. Really really atrocious tennis. My wife and I have started to play once a week and although we appear to be a few serves short of Sampras we have a lot of laughs. You’ve allowed me shameless self promotion so I’m going to take liberties and jump up on my soapbox too. The rationale behind this is that I’m infatuated with learning. Also my wife, but mainly learning… 🙂 I think doing something new, where you can learn as an absolute beginner is vital in education. Being able to laugh at one’s own shortcomings is actually a trait that requires reinforcement. And lastly, but most importantly, my wife and I have found that spending time just us is really important as our family grows. That’s my 2 cents anyway.
What book/movie/music/podcast etc has been a big influence on you?
Have you ever read ‘Tuesdays with Morrie’? I am a little self-conscious sharing self help books I read. They can elicit quite guttural reactions from some. However, this book has been emphatically influential to me. I must have read it 7 times now and if I’m struggling with my mental health a reread can usually help ‘right the ship’. Mitch Albom is an engaging author and although I don’t hold his religious views I have greatly enjoyed his books. To continue with this heavy theme the only movie I have seen the same amount of times is Tangled. I think it self-evident why this movie has been so intrinsic to the way I live my life. So I’ll not waste our time by elaborating.
Any last words you would like to share?
I was once told to always leave your audience with a quote. That way the words attributed to you will be wise and you didn’t have to think too hard to make that impression. So in those wise words.