Evripides works for Derby Adult Learning Service teaching English and maths from entry level through to level 2. His innovative, creative and functional lessons have supported many vulnerable and marginalised people to reach their potential and surpass their own expectations.
I began my teaching career in a young offenders institute where there was a focus on individuals turning their lives around. I learnt that building relationships with the learners was vital, and that I needed to be adaptable in my approaches to teaching. I set up a new education service in partnership with probation to give people another option as part of their community service. I learnt how to structure education programmes and the different factors that can impact learners (for example court appearances, substance use and housing problems). I was motivated by helping people to engage in education and seeing them grow in confidence as they started to achieve.
Seeing learners progress has continued to motivate me throughout my career. I now teach a diverse range of people from different backgrounds and cultures. I work with patients with mental health problems and people with learning difficulties and physical disabilities. Some of my learners achieved high level qualifications in their own countries but need to gain English qualifications to help advance their employment here. I’ve also worked in a local primary school, helping parents gain confidence in working with numbers.
I think the main difference I make is empowering people to have self-belief, and to influence their own future. It is important that learners overcome negative beliefs and see that they can be successful. Education is a great vehicle for social inclusion.
Evripides’ nominator, Jo Porrino, said, “Evripides has unstinting dedication to empowering adults and supporting them to achieve a better future. He is committed to his continuing professional development, and also supports and coaches his colleagues and acts as a mentor for newly qualified staff.”
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