Meet the Team - Tony Stephenson
Role: PE Educator & PECS Mentor
Favourite Quote: The Summit is what drives us, but the climb itself is what matters.
What is something Primary School headteachers and PE coordinators have to deal with that you want to fix?
When I stepped foot into schools over 6 years ago, most of the headteachers did not know where to start when it came to Physical education. From spending their sports premium on equipment to assessing the pupils correctly. Not only that, children only knew how to play the more popular sports such as football, basketball and tennis. I wanted to open the eyes of the children to a vast number of different sports and skills they could use throughout Physical education.
Although we have come far since then, my main aim is to carry on developing teachers and children to their peak potential whilst working alongside the headteachers sharing the data along the way.
What do you do at PEAK?
At PEAK I am a PE Educator and a PECS Mentor. This means I deliver Physical Education to the children whilst also delivering a programme to help and support staff to improve their lessons. I work closely with headteachers, PE co-coordinators and class teachers to assist getting the best possible outcome from the PE curriculum. By doing this I help set out curriculum maps for the year and assist on what should be taught. I support the staff in assessments to help determine not only what their learning objectives are for the pupils but who should be learning what and when.
I also help run lunch time clubs, after school clubs, young leaders’ clubs and support schools with Athletics, Basketball and Football teams throughout. One of my favourite days of the year is Sports day, which I am very grateful to help organise and set up.
Another one of my roles is to assist numerous camps which are spread out throughout the year. These are aimed at 5 to 11 year olds.
What are your credentials/past experience, for working in your position?
Before I started working with PEAK, I had the privilege to play football in many different countries and gain a lot of life skills along the way. During my time abroad I was fortunate to get my level 1 in Football and a Sports Diploma. I would also coach the younger generation at football in many of these countries, I think this is what made me passionate about developing youth in sports.
What’s your Archetype?
The Explorer is drawn to the unknown, whether that’s a Himalayan peak or the road not taken, and have a thirst for adventure. They take journeys, not vacations.
The Athlete's focus and drive are unparalleled. Staying healthy and being fit are paramount to them (as for winning, that doesn't hurt, either)
Friendly, sincere, and compassionate, the Caregiver finds their reward in helping others. No one could ask for a better best friend.
What do you like about working at PEAK?
There are many things I enjoy about working at PEAK. I love the fact that I get the opportunity to progress children from different backgrounds and schools all at the same time. Also, working as part of a team is very important to me, I am very fortunate to be apart of the PEAK team whilst feeling part of the team within my schools.
The rewards are so beneficial, given a child the right tools to blossom in sport whilst setting them up for the life skills they will need when growing up is certainly something I hold close to my heart.
What’s your background?
Where do I start? Lets go back to my youth. Grew up in Kingston Park, attended Kingston Park Primary School up until the age of 10 before moving to Ponteland Middle & High school.
Growing up my parents would always say I had a football at my feet ever since I could walk, after a couple of broken windows later my Dad decided to take me down to the local field to play and always mixed with the older kids. Looking back now, that certainly helped me in later years. Even going up through the Year groups, Academically I was never top of my class. That's when I knew I had to try and make Football my future. Its very cliche but I tell all the children, all the time "you need an education, even if your destined to be the next Michael Jordan because you will never know when you need it to fall back on".
As a young teen I left for the capital to start my football adventure, since then I was fortunate to play in countries such as Italy, Portugal and Australia before returning home.
What are the values that drive you?
I would say that I am very committed to everything I do. For me if you start something and not giving your all then ultimately I feel you wont get the best possible outcome.
Passion is another big drive of mine, If i can make even one child achieve something in their life or help them along the way then that is good enough for me.
I am a very adventurous person, in school and out of work. I like to try and brush it off onto the kids, sky's the limit, its okay to dream and nothing is impossible.
Your top 3 favourite Podcasts/Books?
Never really been into podcasts or books, although I am fond of an autobiography. I do tend to watch a lot of hiking and travelling vlogs on YouTube though. That makes me sound old doesn't it?!
I can tell you something though, one book I have read over a trillion times is Zog and the flying doctor by Julia Donaldson but that might have something to do with having a 5 year old in the house.
What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?
My hobbies have certainly changed since I've got older and now have a beautiful family. I love to spend time with my wife and little girl cycling, walking, days at the beach you name it, we will do it!
I also like to hike up mountains and try and challenge myself along the way, trying to capture special moments through a camera lens.
And don't forget Sports, although I don't play anymore I still like to watch it when i can with my friends. I suppose the passion and love of Sport came from my Dad and it hasn't and I don't think it will ever leave me.