New Head of The Humanities Department
Updated: Jun 25, 2022
By Rohin Ariff
Mr. Stephen Wallace has been a Year 6 teacher at BISB for the past 12 years. Recently, he was appointed the head of a new and innovative Humanities Department.
The creation of the Humanities Department came along with the other major changes to the organizational structure at BISB. (Check out this article to learn more about these significant changes). The new Humanities Department combines numerous existing departments including. This move will support a more interdisciplinary approach to teaching the humanities at BISB. Under one department, greater links in the curricula will be made between subjects, enabling the students’ ability to make more connections across disciplines and improve critical thinking as a result. While the number of different departments being put together here may seem overwhelming, the oversight and interdisciplinary opportunities that it will provide to improve the quality of teaching and learning are critical.
We sat down with Mr. Wallace to learn more about his new role and the new department.
Tell us about yourself.
I have been a teacher in various positions since 2002. Before moving to Boston, I taught in South Africa, Russia, Japan, and the UK. I studied at the University of Newcastle, London South Bank University, and Simmons University. I have been teaching at the British International School of Boston since 2010.
What subjects were combined to form the new department?
The Humanities Department comprises the subjects of History, Geography, Business Studies, Psychology, and Theory of Knowledge.
Why did the school decide to combine so many subjects for this new department?
Some of the departments were very small (comprising of one to two members of staff) so it made sense to create a larger department. Having so many individual departments caused some inefficiencies. Putting everyone in the Humanities Department together was important to making communication easier as well.
What are your goals for the new department?
The school would like to encourage consistency within and across departments. Goals will change each year, and be slightly different even within departments, but there will be overarching plans for each academic year. Currently, we are looking at how assessment is being administered in Middle and High schools. We are also focused on professional development opportunities for staff.
What is the purpose of your role in this department?
As Head of the Humanities department, my role is to ensure that the department is providing a consistently high standard of learning for our students. Our professional management cycle will ensure this, as will our targeted goals each academic year, and our focus on professional development opportunities.
We appreciate Mr. Wallace for his work as a primary school teacher and Head of the Humanities Department. We wish him the best of luck in his new role.