World Teachers Day: Geraldton Senior High School mother-daughter teaching duo educating the next generation

Lachlan AllenGeraldton Guardian
Geraldton Senior High School mother-and-daughter duo Kim Sweetman and Rikki Sweetman.
Camera IconGeraldton Senior High School mother-and-daughter duo Kim Sweetman and Rikki Sweetman. Credit: Jamie Thannoo

A mother-daughter duo in Geraldton is working side-by-side, helping to educate the next generation of Mid West children and highlighting how important teachers are in our community.

Friday is World Teachers Day, which celebrates the fantastic contribution and dedication teachers make, and the significant role they play in the lives of children and students, their families, and communities around the globe.

Closer to home, Geraldton Senior High School teachers Kim Sweetman and daughter Rikki Sweetman embody this contribution and dedication.

As a Mid West family, Kim and Rikki say they understand the context of the area as well as the needs of the community.

They also feel passionate about contributing to the education of students in the region and want to make a difference.

Kim chose to pursue a career in education to support young people while Rikki was inspired to enter education after having children of her own.

While the prospect of working with your daughter or your mother may not be for everyone, Kim says it’s something she values strongly.

“We are so fortunate to work together because it is like working with your best friend. It gives you a safe space to reflect on your day and have someone who knows what you are experiencing at work when you have a not so good day,” she said.

“As a mother, it is very reassuring to watch my daughter excel as a teacher because it gives me great validation that I have been a role model to her and that she is guided by the same moral principles in education and has a great character.”

Kim said they already had a great relationship but working together had allowed them to see a lot more of each other.

As for what sort of response they get from the students, Kim said they have noticed a change in their behaviour.

“As the students get to learn of our relationship, we have both noticed the students that know one or both of us give both of us equal respect,” she said.

“It is nice for students to witness family relationships in education as it gives us validity that we are there to make a difference and do demonstrate that we care about education.”

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