Su Wijeratna (née Cook) studied geography at Birmingham University after leaving Brighton College. She began her teaching career at Epsom College before moving to Eastbourne College where she became a regular visitor to Brighton, finding herself as Elizabeth Cody’s opposite number at several fixtures.
She then became Head of Geography at St Benedict’s School in Ealing before moving on to be a Housemistress at The Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School. Since 2011, Su has worked at St Paul’s Girls’ School where she is Deputy Head and Director of Pastoral Care. Su was recently appointed as Lower Master at Eton College, the first woman to be so in the school’s 576-year history. She will take up the post this September.
Su is married to Alex and they have two daughters.
1. When you were at Brighton College, what did you want to be when you ‘grew-up’?
I didn’t really know what I wanted to be but, as the daughter of the Headmaster of Epsom College at the time, the one thing I definitely did not want to be was a teacher.
2. What are you now you've grown up?
3. What is your best memory of school?
1986, A Level biology fieldtrip to Dale Fort, Pembrokeshire. Mr Archer, a minibus full of classmates, lots of narrow country roads and The Griffin Inn.
4. What was the best piece of advice you were given
The great Mr Spencer, my geography teacher at Brighton who used to regale stories of cricket tours to Barbados, telling us that if we sunbathed on our fronts we should always put sunscreen on the soles of our feet. To this day I’ve never burnt the soles of my feet.
5. What do you do /did you do as a career
I’m currently Deputy Head, Director of Pastoral Care of St Paul’s Girls’ School and have just been appointed as Lower Master at Eton College for this coming September.
6. What does your job involve?
Great variety – everything from teaching, to pastoral care of individual students to working with parents and governors. You never quite know what each day is going to bring.
7. What are the most challenging parts of your job?
Getting the right balance between work and family.
8. What have you done that you are most proud of?
Achieving a number of ‘firsts’ in my field.
9. What is the single thing that would most improve the quality of your life?
10. What are the three objects you would take with you to a desert island?
A solar powered digital radio, the Norton Anthology of Poetry, and my Swiss Army knife.
11. How would you like to be remembered?
For my laugh.