Podcast 5: What Is Unique About Independent School Teaching?

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Boarding Room

Iesha Small

Think Tank associate at LKMco and podcaster for Teacher Toolkit. Iesha is a teacher, writer, podcast producer and speaker. Former school leader who is interested in challenging status quo and solutions.
Read more about Iesha Small

What is unique to teaching at an independent boarding school, and what can teachers do to reduce their workload?

Our fifth guest is Alastair Armstrong, Assistant Headteacher at Fettes College in Edinburgh, Scotland. We catch up with Alistair at former prime Minister Tony Blair’s old school as part of a visit to deliver training.

In this episode, you can hear Alastair and podcast host, Ross Morrison McGill:

  • remember his amazing history teacher at school
  • discuss the benefits of the International Baccalaureate as a qualification
  • explain how teaching A-levels alongside the International Baccalaureate affects teacher workload
  • share the unique nature of educating in a boarding school
  • consider the challenges that new linear A-levels bring to teachers at Fettes
  • reveal the benefits of the “yellow box” approach to marking
  • surprise listeners with a book Alastair has been reading, written by teachers at a controversial English state school.


You can find out more about Fettes College and follow the school on Twitter. You can also follow Alastair on Twitter.

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