60 seconds with Mr Barnett, Head of Religious Studies
Tell us about yourself
I joined Blackheath almost five years ago. Prior to this I worked in Sixth Forms in Blackpool and Clapham. I was excited about this role because it enabled me to be a Head of Department. When I first started I was a one-person team, so it was great for me to re-design the curriculum and put my own stamp on the department. I was then joined by Ms Rehman who helps me massively in managing the department.
What do you like most about your job?
I have the opportunity to talk about the things I'm interested in every day. At the school we also have an enthusiastic audience! The girls love to get involved with debates, discussions and explore things in more detail.
What makes working here at Blackheath High School so rewarding and enjoyable?
Very similar to the above! From a teaching perspective the school allows me a degree of freedom to create a curriculum that's creative and engaging for the girls. The girls are curious and always want to get involved.
Something that I really enjoy about the school is the range of co-curricular activities you can get involved with. For example I'm the Head of Paragon house. We have all kinds of house activities like song contests, quizzes, debates and so much more that adds so much to the Blackheath community.
How do you feel your role has been affected by COVID-19?
There have been so many changes but the biggest thing has been redesigning teaching topics and resources so that everything is available remotely, most of which has been via Firefly.
I'm feeling comfortable in it now so I'm looking at creating more creative approaches to teaching that will work virtually. It's exciting to innovate.
What has been your biggest achievement at Blackheath High School?
I must say it was arranging my first ever school trip to Rome.
What has been your biggest challenge at Blackheath High School?
Arranging the trip was definitely a challenge as there was so much to manage. I'd also say teaching Year 7 for the first time! Especially after being used to teaching Sixth Formers.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I enjoy cycling, playing my guitar and ukulele. I also love seeing live music which I'm really missing at the moment.
Tell us something surprising about yourself
I used to be a figure skater when I was younger. I competed extensively where I was involved with a world championship winning skating team.