Mathematics at Caterham is very strong. As well as being a very popular subject with over half of the Sixth form studying the subject at A level in most years, the examination results are consistently first rate.
In the First to Third Years, the emphasis is on traditional skills in Number and Algebra but the delivery of the subject is far from dreary: plenty of opportunities arise for ‘fun stuff’ (the Maths Puzzle day for the First and Second Years being just one example) and there’s lots of variety in the teaching where members of the department are encouraged to put their own spin on the subject and to try out new ideas. Pupils also take part in the local and national Maths contests including the UK Maths Challenges and Olympiads, the Surrey Schools Maths Challenge (recent winners twice), Team Challenges and Hans Woyda contests. The addition of House Maths competitions has only added to the fun!
Sixth Form Mathematics consists of both single Maths (pure, mechanics and statistics), and Further Maths (which is usually studied by between 1/3rd and ¼ of the mathematicians. Several students study for STEP papers too.
Throughout the year, we run a variety of extension clubs as well as lunchtime and after school support clinics. Many Sixth Formers take part in our own pupil ambassador scheme, helping to support teachers with younger classes. Pupils consistently report that they feel very well supported by our strong, varied and dedicated team.
Dr Anthony Langdon PhD, Head of Mathematics
Anthony joined Caterham in 2013. He previously worked at Kingston Grammar School for 15 years, where aside from teaching Maths, he had variously been in charge of University Admissions, the Sixth Form Lecture programme, Academic Monitoring, and was also the Deputy Head of Sixth Form. In 2012, he spent a year teaching Maths and Science in Yanco Agricultural High School, in rural Australia. He graduated from Downing College, Cambridge with a degree in Natural Sciences, before completing a PhD in Genetics in Edinburgh. He has interests, but they pale into insignificance in comparison with those of his multi-talented department so he declines to declare them.
Mrs Fiona Scott BSc, Second in Department, Resident Boarding Tutor Beech Hanger
Fiona joined Caterham in 2015 having previously worked in the state sector in West London. She graduated from Exeter University with a CH BSc in Mathematics and Spanish and then went on to gain a PGCE at the Institute of Education in London. Her interests include travelling (especially to Hispanic countries), tennis, horse riding and skiing.
Miss Nancy Dawrant MA (Oxon), Teacher of Mathematics, House Co-ordinator
Nancy has been at Caterham since 1999. A Maths degree from Oxford led to an accountancy career at ICI, followed by a two-year sabbatical travelling and finally a post at Anderson Consulting before she made the change to teaching. Her varied interests include travel, hiking, swimming, running, triathlon, squash, cinema, hockey and dining out.
Dr Michael Dimakos, PhD, Oxbridge Co-ordinator and Tutor to the Scholars, Mathematics, Assistant Head of Lewisham
Michael graduated from University of Athens with a degree in Mathematics, before completing an MSc (Part III) and a PhD in Applied Mathematics at University of Cambridge (Churchill College). After working as an EPSRC Post-Doctoral researcher at University of Cambridge for a year he decided to make a transition into teaching. Michael joined Caterham in 2015 after a year teaching at London Academy of Excellence. During that time he gained a PGCE from Institution of Education, UCL. His interests include basketball, football, magic the gathering, travelling and watching movies.
Mr Nick Griffiths, BSc (Hons)
Nick joined Caterham in 2019. He previously worked at an all-girls state school in Epsom where he also trained as a teacher. Before joining the education sector, Nick spent 20 years working in the City as a bond Portfolio Manager. After 12 years at Goldman Sachs, Nick moved to head the Global Bond Portfolios at both Aberdeen and Legal and General. He graduated from Bristol University with an honours degree in Mathematics. His interests include Formula 1 (watching not taking part), anything involving building an excel spreadsheet and claims to go to the gym occasionally.
Mrs Sarah Griffiths MA (Oxon), Teacher of Mathematics, Deputy Head Wellbeing and Pastoral
A graduate in Mathematical Sciences from Jesus College, Oxford, Sarah joined us in September as Deputy Head (Pastoral & Wellbeing) and as a member of the Maths department. As a self-confessed Maths geek, she particularly enjoys both algebra and statistics and learning about the history of mathematics. She taught previously at Dulwich College and at Stowe School.
Mr Stephen Lander, MA(Oxon) MSc, Teacher of Mathematics
A graduate of University College, Oxford, Stephen gained a PGCE at Oxford Brookes University in 1994. Since then he has worked in three state comprehensive schools and joined Caterham in 2007 having previously taught at Bablake School, Coventry. Also during that time he studied part time for an MSc with the Open University. His hobbies include playing the piano, singing in a choir and fell walking. At Caterham he helps run the Silver Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.
Mr James Ogilvie BSc, Teacher of Mathematics, Internal School Examinations Officer
James has been teaching Maths at Caterham since 2001. He graduated from Manchester with a BSc and PGCE. Initially he worked for the Veterinary Medicines Directorate, then he taught Maths at Sir William Perkins’s School for three years before spending a year travelling with bike and tent through New Zealand and the Pacific Rim. Interests include travelling (including having responsibility for World Challenge), hiking, cycling, wildlife and photography.
Mrs Penny Parker BA (Hons), MEd, Teacher of Mathematics, Assistant Head of Fourth Year
Penny studied Mathematics and Music at Royal Holloway followed by a Masters in Education at Birmingham University. After working in the State sector, Penny joined the Caterham School Mathematics Department in 2013. Since joining, Penny has been involved in the School’s Drama productions alongside her duties as a Mathematics Teacher. Penny enjoys appearing on stage as well as behind it and still attends regular dance lessons.
Mrs Rachel Pearce MA (Hons), Teacher of Mathematics, Head of Fifth Year
Rachel joined Caterham in 2013. She graduated from Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford in Mathematics. Her interests are in music, playing the saxophone and singing.
Mr Daryl Todd MA (Oxon), Teacher of Mathematics, Head of Lewisham House
Daryl joined Caterham in 2005. He graduated from Worcester College, Oxford and he is a fully qualified Geordie. Previously was 7 years in the Computer Department of the University of Northumbria. Then 15 years at Ardingly College with duties that included head of hockey and boarding. Interests include skiing, running, badminton and reading.
Mr Conrad Ware, BSc (Hons), Teacher of Mathematics
A graduate of The University of Keele, previously taught at Worth School.
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