Press Profile: From working class to top of the class – how one man’s passion for education has seen him rise to the very top.

About Steve Page ImageBorn into a working class family, Dr Stephen Curran’s passion for education has not only seen him rise to the position of government advisor but also serve as the inspiration to countless of youngsters wanting to achieve their goals through learning.

As well as running a successful tuition centre and educational publishing company, he is regarded as one of the nation’s top education experts.

Dr Curran owns Feltham-based Accelerated Education (AE) Publications and Berkshire-based AE Tuition and was on the panel which advised the current government on the new maths national curriculum.

His passion for education and helping young people reach their full potential stems from those days when, as a young working class lad, Stephen was struggling to cope at school.

Rather than flounder at school, Stephen pulled himself up by his boot straps and found his own ways of understanding the school subjects he struggled with. So much so, he passed O-levels and A-levels with flying colours and went on to get a first class degree in Theology (his first of four degrees). Eventually becoming a teacher, Dr Curran never forgot the days when he used to struggle at school and knew he wanted to help children achieve their full capability.

“Children need structure and techniques at a very early age so they can build up their knowledge. When they have the fundamentals in place then they can expand and create.”

During the recession years of the early 1990s, Dr Curran, like many other teachers, turned to tuition as a way to earn extra money. Within a very short period, he was tutoring around 25 students a week and, by 1999, demand was so high he hired a hall in Iver, Buckinghamshire to teach in. Thus, AE Tuition was formed, followed by AE Publications for which Stephen has written a series of ‘how-to’ books for children from Year 3 to Year 7.

This passion for children’s education saw Dr Curran, in 2005, approach the then government and opposition to share his experience and views. Following the general election in 2010, when Nick Gibb became Minister of State for Schools he asked Dr Curran to join the panel that would discuss changes to the maths national curriculum. That new maths curriculum, in which all children need to know their times tables by Year 4, was launched in 2014.

“Give me the child at 7 and I’ll show you the man” is a saying from the Jesuits. “I say give me a child to educate until they are 11 and I’ll show you the grown-up.”

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