Catherine Dykes

Cath Dykes
Catherine Dykes
Head of Junior School

What led you to be a teacher/work in Education?

After leaving school, I studied nursing in Bristol, practicing as a nurse for six years before having a career change into teaching.  Although I trained as an adult nurse, I worked in an Emergency Department where we treated both adults and children, which is where my interest in working with children stemmed.

What's the best part of your job?

For me, the best part of my job as a teacher is that moment when a child suddenly grasps a new concept.  As a Head it is being able to create a nurturing atmosphere which allows all children to thrive, both academically and pastorally. 

If you weren't in your current role, what would you be doing now?

I expect I would probably still be nursing.

What's your most memorable moment (so far) from working at Sidcot?

There are so many, it is hard to pinpoint one!  The most memorable times are when I see children achieving amazing things for themselves and pushing their capabilities.  This could be a child who is more reserved standing on stage, a child making an Open Day speech despite feeling nervous, sheer enjoyment and pride on a child’s face at Sports Day when they know they have tried their best or when a child simply says something very insightful.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?

I have been given much advice over the years, but the quote “in a world where you can be anything be kind” is the one which holds most power for me.

How do you live adventurously?

I live adventurously through sport and travel, I love to try new things and visit new places. I was fortunate enough to spend a year travelling after university and have had many holidays since then, but there are so many new places I would like to visit and also give my children the experience of encountering.

What is one subject you are curious about?

I am curious about the world and am interested in understanding more about different cultures.

What is one cause you care passionately about?

There are so many good causes out there, but foodbanks have to be near the top of the list for me.  It is really saddening to think some people don’t have enough money to feed their family.

What surprises you about Sidcot?

How accepting everyone is of individual choices.

What makes you proud of Sidcot?

The students know they can make a difference!

How would you like to be remembered by your students?

Fair, kind and approachable.

If you had one word to sum up Sidcot, what would it be?


If you had one word to sum up yourself what would it be?


What notable individual would you invite to a dinner party and why?

David Attenborough, what an amazing life he has led!