French - Term 1, 2021

Introducing Simon McGinley, our new French National Language Adviser

We recently welcomed Simon McGinley to the FLS - Centre for Languages Whānau. Find below a copy of his bio, so you can learn more about our newest team member.  

Simon, like many other teachers of French, began his career in education working as an English assistant. He spent two years in New Caledonia in the North Province and one year in Wallis and Futuna. He came back determined to complete his teacher training, which he did in his hometown of Tāmaki Makaurau. He worked in Auckland for several years before heading to Europe (Spain and the UK). In Spain, he taught ESOL and French to a variety of ages and levels. In England, he taught French and Spanish at a high school in Yorkshire. Simon and his partner returned to New Zealand from Spain in 2020. 
Now Simon is back in New Zealand and keen to work with teachers of French. As he has not taught in New Zealand for a few years, he is interested in re-establishing positive and effective relationships with both teachers and the schools where they work. Given his background in teaching that has led him to where he is now, he has a particular interest in French in the Pacific. He is looking forward to strengthening ties with the French teaching community in Aotearoa and our Pacific partners. 
Simon would like to help rejuvenate an interest in French and see more schools include the subject in their curriculum. He believes that much more could be done to promote not just the learning of French, but languages in general and that teachers deserve more support in this area. He is hoping to be able to assist teachers in continuing to provide their students with engaging and enriching learning programmes. 
Outside of the world of language learning, Simon enjoys most things related to nature. He is particularly fond of plants and is happiest when out in the bush, surrounded by trees or in the garden with his vegetable plants. Prior to the pandemic, Simon enjoyed travelling to other countries and is hoping that it will soon be safe to travel overseas once again. His favourite places he has visited are New Caledonia, Scotland and the Brittany region in France.​

Photos, Left: Simon at Iguacu Falls, Argentina, Middle: Simon with his dog, Right: Simon in Yorkshire Dales, United Kingdom.