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Floyd Steadman

Headteacher at Downsend School, Surrey and inductee in the Saracens Rugby Hall of Fame

As the Headteacher at Downsend School, one of the largest in the Cognita group, I have a simple philosophy on education and want all children to enjoy their time at school. I challenge them to make the most of all opportunities given, and most soon realise that the more they put in, the greater the rewards and enjoyment will be.

Away from education I was fortunate enough to play sport to a high level. In rugby I captained Saracens and also played for the Barbarians. In 2009 I was inducted into the Saracens Hall of Fame. I was also a keen club cricketer, playing in the Hertfordshire league.

My teaching career began in September 1980 at Edgware School in North London. After teaching there for four years I moved on to Bishop Douglas Catholic School, where I was Head of Boys Sport. After five years there I took some time out of education and worked as a sports fund manager for Prisma, a company based in central London.

In 1990 I was given the opportunity to teach at Colet Court, the preparatory department of St Paul’s School in London, and became Head of Sport and Head of Juniors. After eleven extremely enjoyable years, I was promoted to become Deputy Head – Pastoral at Belmont, the preparatory school for Mill Hill. After a telephone conversation with Sir Christopher Woodhead I was persuaded to consider applying for the Headship of Salcombe Prep School in Southgate. After three years at Salcombe I moved to Downsed School, one of the largest in the Cognita group. Now in my fourth year at this dynamic and contemporary school, our aim to give pupils a vibrant education that extends beyond the classroom.

Youngsters Will Lose From an 'All-Win' Approach

Like it or not, life is a competitive process and we are all subjected to competition on a daily basis. Exams, job interviews and even in vying for the hand of a prospective partner, there is always (well, in most cases) someone else out there trying their best to take the glory for themselves.
20/12/2012 10:39 GMT

Different Examinations, Common Thinking

The Common Entrance exam is used as an admissions process for academically selective independent secondary schools. Children attend preparatory school to ready themselves for the exams and sit them aged 13.
19/10/2012 13:20 BST