Earlier this week, I met with Mr Rickford who joined BISS Puxi in August 2015 as Deputy Head Curriculum.
1) Can you tell me more about your role at BISS Puxi?
As Deputy Head Curriculum, I am committed to ensuring that the quality of teaching and learning continues to improve in the secondary school. To this end, I regularly meet with teachers and heads of department to determine the best strategies for helping our students achieve academic success. The part of the role I enjoy most is visiting classrooms and seeing teachers and students hard at work.
2) What is your educational background, both academically and career wise?
I studied Modern History at university and then spent several years employed as a corporate events manager in London. After working with teenagers at residential English language schools during my holidays, I decided to change profession and trained to be a History teacher. Over the years, I have worked in British state schools and on the international scene in China. I’ve held several middle and senior leadership positions and have had experience of working in both the academic and pastoral domains.
3) What has been the most memorable experience to date in your career?
In 2014, I led a school trip to North Korea; it was a privilege to spend a week with a group of charming and intelligent students, as well as to gain a much better understanding of the history, politics and culture of this fascinating country.
And now for some light-hearted questions.
4) What do you like to do in your spare time in Shanghai?
I enjoy wandering around the Former French Concession, gazing at Art Deco buildings, indulging in sumptuous Sunday brunches and practising my limited Mandarin on the city’s taxi drivers.
5) As a long-suffering fan of Newcastle United, do you ever expect to see them lift a trophy within the next 20 years?
Based on what I’ve witnessed in the last 20 years, I would not put money on it.
6) What sports did you play as a child growing up?
At my school we played rugby in the autumn, hockey in the spring and cricket in the summer.
7) What’s your favourite holiday destination in the world?
Argentina, especially the wine region around Mendoza.
8) We’ve heard that you’re a great cook in the kitchen. What would be your signature dish?
It appears you have been misinformed! My wife Elise has not let me near “her” kitchen since I tried to cook a kedgeree about 10 years ago. She still has nightmares about the mess I created on that occasion, and I am still banned from lifting a saucepan. One day I would like to be allowed to cook a Beef Wellington.
9) What’s your favourite film of all time?
I never tire of watching Pulp Fiction.
10) And finally, if you could choose one actor to star as you in a film, who would you choose and why?
If I could choose the film genre, I would probably opt for an animated biopic and employ the veteran voiceover actors from The Simpsons. It has the potential to be a little bit different and quite amusing…..at my expense.
Thank you very much for your time Mr Rickford.
If there is anyone at BISS Puxi that you would like to be featured over the coming weeks, please email me who you would like to ‘’Get to Know’’ and any questions you would like to ask them.
Ryan Kealey, Marketing and Events Manager