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New Marykirk head teacher believes kindness is key

Louise Anderson, new head teacher at Marykirk Primary School is pictured next to the school building.
Louise Anderson is the new head teacher at Marykirk Primary School. Supplied by Aberdeenshire Council

Louise Anderson is moving into the role of head teacher at Marykirk Primary School.

She’s been teaching in the cluster for 11 years, at both Mearns Academy and Laurencekirk Primary School. She said she’s excited to be working with familiar colleagues and families.

After finding out her application was accepted, Mrs Anderson said that she spent the night pinching herself.

“I couldn’t quite believe it. Obviously, I was delighted because it was something I have been working towards for a while.”

Mrs Anderson is taking over the role from Isla Mann. Mrs Mann was previously dual head teacher at Marykirk and St Cyrus Schools. She will continue in her role at St Cyrus.

The path to Marykirk Primary School

Mrs Anderson began her career teaching music at a secondary school in Cumbernauld. After moving to Aberdeenshire and taking time to start a family, she joined the team at Mearns Academy as a supply teacher.

Marykirk Primary School head teacher Louise Anderson
Louise Anderson is the new head teacher at Marykirk Primary School. Supplied by Aberdeenshire Council

She then moved into the Additional Support Needs department, which inspired her to learn more about supporting younger children and retrain as a primary teacher.

After leaving Mearns, she spent five years at Laurencekirk Primary School as a teacher, Acting Principal Teacher and Acting Depute before becoming head teacher at Marykirk Primary School.

She’s excited to continue working so close to familiar faces, she said.

“It just seemed like the next step in my career. It’s great to be still involved in the same cluster working with the colleagues I have been working with before.”

‘Being in school is a lovely place’

Mrs Anderson finds inspiration on campus from her students and the lessons she believes they can teach her.

“What we learn from the kids on a daily basis is just fascinating. How they play with each other, and how they interact with other people, and how much they want to learn.

“Being in school is a lovely place to be each day because it is usually a happy environment.”

Marykirk Primary School recently started a project called the Kindness Cube, which encourages students to point out examples of kindness during the day. Mrs Anderson said that she is looking forward to seeing her pupils take part.

“These are the skills we want the children to have. We can teach them the knowledge but if you don’t have these baseline skills: to look after each other, to be able to communicate with each other – then you will struggle.”

Ringing endorsements for Mrs Anderson

During her time at Laurencekirk, Mrs Anderson thrived on the support and guidance of her colleagues. She thanked Laurencekirk head teacher Jill Smith for providing her with an example of how to lead.

Cllr Gillian Owen, Aberdeenshire Council’s Education and Children’s Services Committee chair, is expecting great things from Mrs Anderson, who she said has already hit the ground running.

“She has a wealth of knowledge and experience of both primary and secondary teaching which will be very useful for her current role. She also has a great knowledge of the cluster which will stand her in good stead too.

“I am delighted to see she is already introducing a caring ethos and wants the school to be in the heart of the community it serves.”

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