Big changes across fruitful career

From Home Economics to coding and robotics, Cecely McGeachie has experienced some major changes in her 35 year career.

Probably more than any other discipline, the Home Economics role has evolved dramatically since McGeachie started out at Narrabri High School in 1983.

Now moving towards retirement after 32 years in various Catholic independent schools, most recently St Patrick’s College at Campbelltown, McGeachie said her years of experience won’t be lost to the profession.

“I’m going to take a break, but I don’t think education has finished with me yet. I may explore other opportunities in education in the future.”

Her current role is Assistant Principal Learning and Teaching and she takes great interest in the careers on beginning teachers, supporting them through the accreditation process, and ensuring that they are fully equipped to cater for all the learners in their classroom, whatever their needs.

“I’ve always been interested in the kids who need extra support, and that teachers can accommodate for them.”

She has developed a tool which casuals and early career teachers can use to collect their accreditation data and get signed off before they leave the school.

Over time McGeachie has evolved her career to incorporate VET Hospitality, and digital technologies, including robotics and coding and woodwork.

“Teachers have to keep on top of a changing landscape, they have to stay connected, network, read widely, go to PD and participate in professional learning.

“The VET framework requires teachers to constantly remain current, which can be rather onerous along with all other requirements for compliance.

“But it’s an enjoyable challenge – as educators we are lifelong learners.

“Teachers constantly need to reflect on their practice to cater for the changing needs of generations of learners.”

McGeachie recently received her 30 year membership badge from the IEU. “I have always been a Union member since my first job as a ‘checkout chick’ when I was 14.

“My parents instilled in me that if you work you are a union member, they will advocate for you, lobby for you and make sure employees are treated fairly and justly.

“I have never considered not being a member of the Union.”