Hi, I’m Victoria
I decided to go into teaching after my dream of working in pediatrics was shattered due to being told I ‘wasn’t good enough to be a doctor’ because I wasn’t very good at science at school. Being told this inspired me to celebrate all achievements, regardless of what they are and I firmly encourage children (and adults) to be the best they can be.
I am now the Head Teacher of St Mary’s Primary School in Tilbury. Many children who attend our school don’t get to share in ‘real life experiences’, and this can be the greatest difference between them and those who come from more affluent communities. A good education offers equality for all children, no matter their upbringing or financial circumstances.
I believe that every child can make a difference and as teachers our job is to encourage them and foster their greatness. My role is to encourage all my children to use the talents they were given, whatever they may be. Children are the leaders of the future and we need to grow our leaders by investing in their education.
During lockdowns, the school was closed to the majority of students but for those who were the most vulnerable, or for those who lived in flats and had no outdoor space to play, I was able to offer a place to come to learn and enjoy in a safe environment. It was great to be able to offer relief to troubled families by distributing food, computer equipment and homemade cakes. We also provided emotional support by having weekly telephone calls to the children, and we increased our counselling provision for families.
My greatest motivation in life is to be like my dad. He has suffered two strokes, leaving him paralysed, completely changing the lives of both my parents. Seeing him continue to push himself beyond all expectations is incredible. He makes me so proud and I think that if my parents can still live a full life, despite the barriers, I can keep going too, and inspire each child under my care to do the same.
The Queen is also a big inspiration to me; she carries out her duties in a very dignified way, and also has a sense of grace. She always comes across as approachable, sparing the time to speak to anyone, regardless of their status.
“My children attend St Mary’s in Tilbury and I can honestly say that Mrs McBrown has changed their – and their peer’s lives for the better. The children will remember in the future that Mrs McBrown believed they had the ability to be the best they can, and showed them how to succeed in whatever they do.” – extract from the key worker nomination for Victoria