Richard Durant trained as a teacher in 1979, lost interest in teaching and worked as a bus driver in Bristol for 6 years, during which time he was blacklisted by the Economic League for seditious activities. He switched to teaching in 1985, working in a number of Bristol area comprehensives. His first permanent post was at St Katherine's school near Bristol. He then moved for promotions first to Backwell School and then to Hanham High, before moving to Brislington School in Bristol as Head of English in 1996.
As he has always seen English as a matter of teaching a range of exciting, empowering skills, Richard has never had much time for the personal growth, organic, literature-inclined, bearded version of English.
In 1997 he contributed to the TTA working party that wrote the (pretty lamentable his words) Initial Teacher Training National Curriculum for English, and to in-school research projects that were published in the Secondary English Magazine. In 2001 he took his current post as English Consultant for Wiltshire LEA, a post that privileges him with the chance to see lots of wonderful teachers doing their stuff. It also involves a lot of driving and drinking coffee out of styrofoam cups.
We first published Richard Durants resources in January 2002, when he contributed the popular NLS compliant materials for teaching story endings and openings. Richard believes that the internet is a more powerful teacher resource than books, even though (perhaps because) it is less quality controlled. He feels that what good, engaging teachers need is not books for their pupils to slave their way through, but lesson plans and resources in smart, copiable black-and-white. In other words, materials that try to make good teaching possible, rather than unnecessary. Over the last two years he has supported classroom teachers by supplying a succession of high quality, teacher-focused resources, such as the innovative Language Variety: The Magna Carta & SMS Messaging scheme of work.