It has now been over 2 weeks since we arrived in the UK and I have now been in my new job for a full week and only just found time to reflect and put some words into a short post for the website. Of course I have plenty of things to write about but I want to keep this one simple and about being back ‘home’ in the UK and the initial process of reconnecting with the UK education system – something I fully intend to take maximum advantage of and to feedback on over time.
It has been a very frenetic week meeting many new people and trying to puzzle together where and how they all fit within the complexities of a school organisation. It is very tempting to dive straight in and to commit or give input to every request or idea that comes your way as you meet people and want to give a positive first impression. You have to be realistic though and take a step back – observe and listen and build up as accurate a big picture as possible of how you and your role can be most effective and successful in the short and longer term without making too many mistakes.
It is times like this in your life and career that you look for constants, things that you are sure about and that reassure you however small they may be. They guide you through the unknown and they are there for you to anchor your trust and confidence onto to. Today, when I walked into the school canteen for lunch (the food has been great all week by the way and making the need for exercise more urgent!) my senses detected that familiar smell of fish and chips, proper English fish and chips served on a Friday and with mushy peas. I loaded up my tray and walked down the serving station thinking this could not get any better – but it could, there it was steaming hot jam sponge and custard staring right up at me, taking me all the way back to my secondary school days. I said a heartfelt thanks to Sharon the chef at the same time expressing my delight for this nostalgic treat and she in return gave me the biggest end of the week smile, as if to say well done – you deserve it. I hope I did.