Posted by SCL Education Group on 06.09.18
This week, we spoke to Richard Hylton; Lead GCSE Maths Specialist, as we took an inside look into his career, and found out why a role with SCL is #morethanjustajob.
Name: Richard Hylton
Job title: Lead GCSE Maths Specialist
Talk us through your role, who you work for, and what you do…
As the GCSE Maths Specialist my job is the creation of resources for the staff to use during their lessons whether that be simple worksheets or quizzes and games or even videos of me. I am also here to support specialist and vocational lecturers alike when it comes to everything Maths.
What are your main responsibilities?
As well as what I mentioned above I am also going into different clubs and teaching the students first hand (best part of the job). The vocational staff will sit in with me to give them the confidence in the subject. I will be making sure resources are available and sent out every week to all the clubs all adhering to the scheme of work that I produced over the summer.
What do you enjoy most about your role as Lead GCSE Maths Specialist?
For me the best part of the job is those ‘Eureka’ moments the students have. For example, they would be struggling to ‘factorise’ a rather challenging topic, and all of sudden you see their face light up and the understanding come flooding in. “I could never do this at school, and now it makes perfect sense”. For me that is by far the best part of this job and any teaching role. Knowing you have made that difference.
What support do you receive from your employer?
Regular CPD meeting from my peers and management so everybody, myself included understands what is expected from them. As my background is predominantly Maths I have been given the opportunity to partake in a ‘Teaching English’ course to concrete my knowledge.
Can you talk us through your career path to-date?
I started off as Finance Graduate after I came back from travelling, although enjoyable it didn’t really excite me the way a career should, so I applied to become a GCSE Maths lecturer at a local college. My only experience that I had previous to this was during college/university I did private tuition for friends and family, my thinking was: “well it would be pretty much the same thing just on a larger scale”.
As soon as I started teaching I was absolutely hooked, during my 4 years at Basingstoke College of Technology I completed my Level 5 Diploma in Teaching and Education and went on to become GCSE Maths Course Director whereby I had my own team of teachers.
After a year of this I still wanted more, so became an AQA examiner alongside marking the GCSE Maths papers every summer to widen my knowledge in the subject. Furthermore, I would spot the common errors students where making in their exams. Soon after, I came to work for Jackie here in a more work-based environment, and here I am now still putting every drop of passion into everything I do here at SCL.
What are the stand-out moments from your career to-date?
My stand out moment so far has to be my Grade 1 observation during which the college was going through an OFSTED inspection. I had by far my nosiest/largest class, it was Friday lunchtime so the last Maths class of the week so the students were not at their ‘optimal’ concentration level. However, I could not have asked for a more perfect lesson, this along with the students singing my praises secured my first ever Grade 1 Observation.
What opportunities are there for young people within your industry?
There are plenty of pathways to get where am for the younger generation. I am sure we have had students here at SCL who started as a student, then assistant lecturer, then sports lecturer and are now dabbling in the Maths & English side of things.
What experience is required to be successful as an FE Sports Lecturer?
The minimal requirement is a GCSE in Maths and preferably some background in teaching, however, I started with just the former (well I have a degree in Maths) and look at me know!
What are you looking for when it comes to recruiting?
Someone with a genuine love and enthusiasm for Maths. You could have the best knowledge in the world of Maths but if you have no oomph and energy in your teaching your students will not respond to you.
What are the biggest challenges you face at work?
The M25, by god that motorway is constantly busy.
If you had one bit of advice for your younger self, what would it be?
Invest heavily in Bitcoin and Leicester City win the Premier League in 2016 at 5000/1 so put a ton of cash on that!
What is the best advice that you've received?
‘Reach for the Moon and if you fall land on the stars’ - nobody is stopping you from being the greatest you can be except yourself. Strive for your dream, and if it doesn’t quite work out take a step back and look how far you’ve really made it.
What would your motto or slogan be?
Work hard, play hard
We asked Richard:
What are you most proud of since working at SCL?
Going to a private company to organise our exam centres for GCSE was my idea!
What is your favourite food?
Mum’s Macaroni Cheese
What makes you mega happy?
Food – I am a big foodie, I live off the stuff... no pun intended!
If you could spend an evening with anyone, famous or not, who would it be? And where would you go?
Idris Elba, because he is by far the coolest man who ever lived, I aspire to be him! Tokyo would be my place of choice because it’s on the bucket list and who doesn’t want to spend an evening in Tokyo with Idris, he is paying of course
What is the best thing about working for SCL?
Having Jackie as a boss.... I hope she reads this