Hero photograph
Photo by DHS

Tribute to Scott Jermyn

Trish Evans —

Tena Koutou Katoa, Ko Trish Evans toku ingoa, Deputy Principal of DHS and both a colleague and friend of Scott and Angela Jermyn. On behalf of DHS and the wider community, I would like to begin by passing on my sincere condolences to Angela, Sue and Rod, Ros, Todd, Ella and Macey, Raewyn and Brian, Stuart, Kate, James and Gemma, and the wider family and friends of Scott, on his recent passing after a long illness.

While Scott is no longer with us, he leaves behind a legacy that will comfort us in the days to come. Maya Angelou, an American poet once said:
“If you are going to live, leave a legacy. Make a mark on the world that can’t be erased.”

Scott has left his mark on the world, and we will remember him in the special memories that he has been a part of creating with each and every one of us.

As an experienced teacher, Scott had taught at a number of schools prior to starting at Dar eld High School in 2011. He began his tenure as our Year 7 Dean, a role which he continued until 2017 when he moved to work as part of the Year 8 team. Scott also held other roles during his time at Dar eld High School, such as Numeracy Co-ordinator, Board of Trustees Sta Representative, Specialist Classroom Teacher, and Dance Teacher.

As our Year 7 Dean, Scott was an excellent representative for Dar eld High School when
he travelled to our contributing Primary Schools each year as part of our transition programme.
He would provide excitement for the Year 6s as they began their journey out of the Primary School environment and into the High School one. He would give them security when introducing them to an unfamiliar environment and also be there
to support them when they arrived at DHS; then he fostered them as they grew and achieved positively in the care of the Year 7 team.

In the classroom, Scott was an inspiring and
caring teacher. He had a manner and a way about him that everyone loved. Children enjoyed his
dry sense of humour. Students and sta quickly worked out that Scott was a “super nice” gentle giant of a man, with the biggest heart. He had a wicked sense of humour and loved to joke around, as is reflected in the following comments from his students:

  • Mr Jermyn loved his jellybeans. He had this big jar of them and sometimes you were allowed one! He also loved to tease us with them.

  • Mr Jermyn taught me that it was okay to be ‘big’.

  • Mr Jermyn had a great relationship with us. I think

    he was our friend, as well as our teacher, so there was always a great environment in his classes. He had a good sense of humour and cracked ‘inside’ jokes. You had to be part of the team to understand them.

  • Mr Jermyn always made sure we were keeping up to the best standard in our lesson and this was important.
  • Mr Jermyn had a fun sense of humour and every time I had a class with him he would tell a joke. That would make my day!
  • Mr Jermyn was an amazing coach and was always helping the school. He never gave up on any of his students, no matter what. 

Scott also got along positively with his colleagues and loved to tease one or two of our ‘vertically challenged’ sta members. He would put the whiteboard pens out of their reach or write at the top of the whiteboard “Mr Jermyn is awesome” and then leave, while the students were in stitches as they knew that the top part of the whiteboard was out of their teacher’s reach. 

As a teacher who involved himself in a large number of activities outside the classroom, Scott was a rare commodity. Rugby coaching was a passion for both Scott and his students. I remember Scott always being the rst sta member to volunteer to go on any sports or cultural trips, such as the Junior Quad Tournaments, Stage Challenge, House Competitions, Athletic Sports Championship, and Drama Productions, to name a few. He often volunteered to be a coach, a manager or even a driver for the basketball teams who played in the Friday evening competitions in Christchurch. He will be sorely missed by our students for his sharing nature, support and knowledge in these pursuits. 

One of our members of sta had the privilege of playing against Scott in
a rugby match during the 1990s. He reported that Scott was an incredible force, super strong in the scrum and an amazing lifter in the lineout. He was tough to play against and he was a legend. 

You may also know of Scott’s love of music, his quiz knowledge that was second to none, his love of Marvel characters and Super Heroes, that he had ‘Ogre’ as his car licence plate and ‘Shrek’ as his avatar, and of the fun and enthusiasm he put into school house events, especially supporting Tawera House in his red overalls or when flying around in his red cape.

Our School Librarians will miss this avid reader of books and his frequent discussions on the latest ‘must-read’ children’s books. Scott would even email them in the holidays to tell them about the latest ‘MUST BUY’ books! He would often read aloud to his students in class and his passion was so infectious that his students would go running to the library looking for the next book in a series that Scott was reading to them. 

The following part of the Eulogy has been contributed by Sue Robinson, past DHS Board of Trustees Chairperson.

Scott started his time on the Board with an open mind and a willingness to make a difference for our students. His enthusiasm to learn and be part of the governance process was welcomed at a time when the Board had a number of new members. Scott shared his experiences in the classroom with the parent trustees to contribute to our meetings with purpose and focus.

At one of the NZSTA conferences attended by Brad, Scott and me, we played hookey during one afternoon session when the content got a bit much for all of us. So, over a beer or coffee, we chatted about Dar eld and all the things we had learned. It was then that I knew Scott would be one of the best Staff representatives I would work with, and the Board as a whole went from strength to strength.

Over the next few years, the Board tackled some unique challenges. At no time did Scott back down,
at times putting himself in a vulnerable position to ensure the work of the Board was completed. I was very concerned about his well-being, but equally, he kept a good check on the rest of the Board, to make sure the stressful times were shared amongst us all.

Scott served four years on the Board of Trustees for Dar eld High School and during this time I enjoyed his friendship, his wisdom and his compassion. His passing will be felt in the wider community as this gentle giant was highly respected by our staff, students and the parents in our community.

Angela, we stand with you at this time as we farewell Scott, a friend, teacher and colleague, taken too soon.

Read by Trish Evans, at Scott's Funeral