Teacher Feature: Mr James Polansky

At Boundary Oak School we are very proud of our exceptional teachers and staff. Throughout the school, from Pre-School through to our GCSE subject specialists in the Senior School, our award-winning staff are largely to thank for the fantastic success of our school and its pupils.

This week we talk to Academic Deputy Head, James Polansky.

Boundary Oak School Teaching StaffMr James Polansky
Academic Deputy Head.
James will also become the new Headmaster of Boundary Oak School from September 2017.



  • Former committee member of the Association of Teachers of Mathematics and UK Mathematical association (Meridian branch).
  • Previously experience has included Head of A level Mathematics and mentor for trainee teachers.
  • Also teaches ICT and Computer Science.
  • Designed and set up the the Quo Vadis Baccalaureate.
  • Achieved a Distinction in his PGCE
  • Studied at Bradfield College and the University of Cambridge as well as Colegio Monteagudo in Spain
  • Competed as a swimmer (butterfly) at national level in Spain and played basketball and waterpolo for university teams.
  • Avid MOOC learner with completed courses ranging from mathematical philosophy to analysis of algorithms (from Princeton and Stanford universities)
  • Previous career in financial derivatives trading (last position was as Global Head of EM, Correlation and Index FX Options trading at Barclays Capital)
  • Enjoys spending time with his family, cross country running and the great outdoors.
  • Married to Suzanna and father to their three children Tilly, Sebi and Max


What made you get into teaching? I wanted to share my enjoyment of learning and others to share theirs with me.

What makes you jump out of bed in the morning? The excitement that I’m going to learn something new today.

The book you want all of your pupils to read is …. 13 Things That Don’t Make Sense: The Most Intriguing Scientific Mysteries of our time by Michael Brooks

Your Desert Island Books and/or Discs would be… Desert Island Books include; Gabriel Garcia Marquez: One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the time of cholera, Miguel de Cervantes Don Quixote and Oliver Byrne’s Edition of The Elements of Euclid. Discs would be any 60/70s rock

Who have been your heroes and inspirations in life? Richard Feynman and Bertrand Russell

How can parents help their children with education? Feed their curiosity.

What is the most enjoyable aspect of your job on a day-to-day basis? Being surrounded by happy children.  

How do you spend your down time? Role-playing with my children.

What is your biggest challenge and how have you addressed it? Being an introvert in an extrovert job….like most challenges: deep breath and jump.

What is the one thing that makes you most proud of where you work? The altruistic commitment and passion of my staff.

If you hadn’t become a teacher what would you have done instead? Become a student.

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