1. What was your school like?
I went to four different school throughout the years. Shoreham College was my main school where I spent most of my time from year 5 through to year 11. It was a mixed school and i really enjoyed it. Then I went onto college/sixth form at a place called BHASVIC in Brighton which was much bigger than my school ever was.
2. What is your favourite memory from school?
Having the luxury of being with your best friends every day. You don’t realise it when you’re at school, but when you leave and everyone moves on to other things you realise how much you take being with your best friends every day for granted.
3. How did your school experience influence/help your career?
I was surrounded by a good group of people. Even my teachers were supportive of whatever goals I wanted to pursue at the time.
4. Did you experience bullying at school?
When I was around the age of 13 I used to get called lots of names for doing gymnastics. It was something I loved and had done since the age of 4, but people would call me "gay", say I was a girl for wearing leotards on a daily basis. It wasn’t anything too extreme and most of the time i would just brush it off. But i didn’t talk to anyone and started to wonder myself if it was "gay" to do gymnastics so in the end just gave up doing something i loved. There were also a few guys in year 11 who would trip me up, or push me into the lockers or down the stairs every time I walked past them, which was quite intimidating. I just ignored them and tried to keep my distance.
5. What was the lowest/worst part of the bullying?
The worst part was that I wasn’t talking to anyone about it. I know in my case it wasn’t too extreme but the process is still the same and not talking to anyone about it could have perhaps helped me see a different opinion
6. What was your favourite school subject?
Probably PE. I was a very sporty kid and loved to play pretty much any sport.
7. What did you look forward to when you went back to school after the holidays? What advice would you give to young people who are going back to school after the holidays?
To be honest there wasn't much that I did look forward to at the time. Getting back into the sports teams always used to excite me though. It’s always a nervous time heading back to school, but there’s a lot of hype built up around it and a lot of the time, things work out better than expected.
8. Was there anything you worried about when you went back to school after the holidays? How did you overcome this?
I always used to get butterflies before school. You haven’t seen most of the people for about 6 weeks. Would things change, new teachers, new people in your classes. All those thoughts used to go through my mind. I remember walking into my new form rooms terrified. But, you meet new people, catch up with old friends, and if you’re lucky you’ll have a good teacher who you get along really well with.
9. What was your favourite school meal?
Ohhhh, every Friday it was chips day. At the time I would go crazy for the chips, not now however ;). Also we used to get meals after sports games vs other schools. There was one school in particular we played, and it was a rather up market one so the meal after was incredible.
10. If you had to go back to school again what would you change?
I would definitely take more interest in history. At the time i used to hate it, but now i find it fascinating and love learning about our past and different cultures.
11. What advice would you give to anyone who is worried about going back to school?
DEFINITELY TALK TO SOMEONE. Whether that be a friend, teacher, or parent. Someone will always be willing to listen and help you.
12. What difference would an Anti-Bullying Ambassador have made?
In my school there was no such thing. Having something or someone in your school who you know you can go and speak to and almost have a community of peers who are passionate about the topic is a huge advantage. I know that would have helped me a lot.