The first Spotlight of 2019 shines on Georgia Jukes, our new Head of Lower School and Teacher of Modern Foreign Languages.

Georgia was born in the South West of England and is the daughter of a police officer and charity fundraiser. Her family comes from Plymouth and she loves spending time with them in Plymouth whenever she can. With her parents' encouragement and their inspirational careers, Georgia was always looking for ways to help others and she became a teacher for this very reason. Georgia has always loved travelling and since an early age, wanted to learn languages to communicate with people she met along the way. She studied Spanish and Latin American Studies at the University of Southampton and was lucky enough to spend her University Year Abroad living and working in Jaén, Spain. She worked in a Spanish Primary School as an English Language Assistant and has since enjoyed working with children of both Prep and Senior age. After graduating from Bath Spa University with a PGCE in Modern Foreign Languages, Georgia started teaching at Warminster School and hasn’t looked back. She has been a Lower School tutor since she arrived, Head of Life Skills for the last two years and is embracing her new Head of Lower School role with gusto.

How long have you worked at Warminster?

4 and a half years. It has flown by.

What’s the best thing about your role?

Seeing the pupils develop throughout their years at the School. They start as energetic and nervous Year 7s on their first day in the Senior School but ultimately they end up confident, self-aware, motivated and grounded young people. My first group of Year 7s are now in Year 11 – it’s a privilege to have watched them grow up and flourish. 

Describe a typical day?

Every day is different when working with young people, but every day I both teach and learn something new. The young people at Warminster School are positive and have so much to give.

What do you think makes Warminster a special place to live and learn?

Every day I am greeted politely by pupils and staff alike. Enthusiastic ‘bonjours’ and ‘holas’ in the corridor and around the School site make this a truly special place. Warminster is an outstanding community.

What would surprise us about you?

I’ve worked backstage for several ‘big names’ during my time working for the events team at University. Does Chesney Hawkes count?

What other Warminster role would you like to try for a day and why?

An EAL teacher. I’m a languages teacher but I haven’t taught my own language since my assistant days in Spain. It would be interesting to see how good my knowledge of English grammar is.

As a child what did you want to be when you grew up?

A writer. I’ve absolutely loved reading since an early age.

What did your school reports say about you?

As you might expect, I loved school. My reports were positive and said “Georgia is hard working and keen to do well”. I’m still in contact with several of my best school friends. I want our pupils at Warminster School to be as fulfilled and happy as I was. 

Your note/advice to teenage self?

Make the most of every day. Time goes too quickly and we only get precious moments with some people in our lives.

Your mantra/motto or favourite quote?

Nelson Mandela’s quote about education is inspirational and reinforces the privileged position we have as educators:

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

Hidden ambitions still to achieve?

I would love to write a book! I would love to be able to write something that gives people pleasure and enables them to escape from their lives just for a moment.

A favourite possession you would save from a fire?

Our wedding photos.

Biggest bugbear?

‘Should of’…. need I say more!

Favourite musician/group?

I love relaxing guitar music (I apologise to my pupils who may not like it as much as I do, but listen to it during lessons!), particularly by José Gonzalez.

Guilty pleasure?

The characters ‘The Moomins’ based on the books by Tove Jansson. The cute little white creatures seem to have permeated my stationery, umbrellas, even lights..!

MasterChef signature dish?

I’d have to say something Thai as we honeymooned in Koh Samui, Thailand, last year and the food was out of this world!

Favourite TV programme?

I don’t have a favourite TV programme in all honesty, but will watch dramas if they’re on.

Last book you read?

The ‘Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out Of The Window’: a really engaging novel covering the History of Europe.

Last movie watched?

A Christmas film! I love the whole season of Christmas.

Which actor would play you in a movie about your life?

Somebody quite clumsy. Unfortunately, I have a habit of bumping into things quite regularly. I broke some toes last year, which was not fun. I googled clumsy, language loving actresses and a few options came up. Colleagues suggest, Anne Hathaway or Gwyneth Paltrow. Gwyneth traveled to Spain as a teenager, and fell in love with the language and culture. She visits Spain every year and speaks to her children in Spanish too. But she would have to change her hair colour to play me and I probably don't eat as 'clean' as she does!

Favourite tipple?

Prosecco. After our wedding in July 2018, we had a fair few bottles left that we are still working our way through.

I think my MFL colleagues would say peppermint tea though.

Favorite place/city in the world and why?

My favourite city is without question, Plymouth. The coastline is beautiful and as it’s where my family is from.

Twitter or Facebook?

Twitter is amazing for engaging in educational discussion and sharing best practice. I’d be lost without it!

You can follow Georgia on @GeorgiaJukes and discover what our Lower School pupils get up to @LowerWarminster