Introducing Graeme Scott
Several years back, I came across some articles that predicted the current generation of school leavers would be known as the freelance generation. This suggested that students would graduate with a specific set of skills that they would learn, practice and hone. They would then be able to ‘tout for business’ by showcasing these skills and see who might be interested in hiring them. Multiple roles for multiple employers was the implication, and we are witnessing examples of this right now. Platforms such as Fiverr and Upwork allow talented young individuals to market themselves and their skill sets to prospective employers. This is very different from my own career trajectory, and much more fluid, although, at the time, mine was still more interesting than many of my peers who did not follow the education pathway.
Growing up in a family of teachers, my career seemed clearly mapped out for me. I was to become a teacher in a UK state school. The regular route for me would be either to remain a teacher for the next forty years (that was never going to happen!) or to progress through the ranks. That meant Head of Department, Deputy Head, Headteacher, retirement or, in many cases, early retirement due to stress-related illness! However, I married a fellow teacher with wanderlust so the teacher stage was instead followed by an overseas leadership position in Hong Kong. Once we had been bitten by the international bug (I realize the phrase ‘international bug’ has different connotations now), there was no turning back. Subsequent leadership positions followed in Dubai, The Hague, Bangkok and Dubai again, the most recent of these being Founding Director of the Middle East’s first sustainable IB school.
Slightly less traditional than the ‘Option A’ of ladder-climbing within the UK school system, but still nothing compared to the freelancers we see now. However, things were about to change. After four hugely enjoyable and challenging years attached to the solar-powered, sustainable, Fairgreen International School project in Dubai, it was time to move on to another international school leadership position. But then something happened.
I was approached by Philip Bowman of the MARIO Framework. MARIO is an acronym, representing Measured, Ambitious, Research-informed, Innovative, and One-to-one learning centered. These are the key elements that combine to steer professional learning courses, some unique software solutions, and in fact the whole ethos of the organization. The MARIO movement was established by Phil to create the conditions whereby students with diverse learning needs could thrive, whatever their challenges. MARIO Educators understand and leverage the power of relationships. Academic and well-being gains have been extraordinary for students with MARIO educators as well as increases in their self-confidence and management skills. I was so inspired by the MARIO movement, I decided not to pursue another position working as a school leader, and instead to take up a position as Executive Chairman of the MARIO Framework.
I am so excited about this new role for so many reasons. I am working with a stellar team of passionate, inspiring educators, the work we do is a great balance of research-supported and innovative, and we are ultimately helping to remove barriers to learning for many students. Already, the MARIO Framework is training teachers and supporting students in fifteen countries, with many more to come. To learn more about the MARIO Framework, get in touch with me here.