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Meet the modern studies teacher who inspired two of Scotland’s top politicians

Aug 30, 2021

Modern Studies teacher Paul Hunt taught both Ruth Davidson and Alex Cole Hamilton Fond memories of Mr Hunt Both Ruth Davidson and Alex Cole-Hamilton remember Mr Hunt as a snappy dresser, hanging out with the other younger teachers in their 20s at the time. “I remember Mr Hunt as being really enthusiastic and energetic when he taught me, very young just out of teacher training probably” says Ruth Davidson. “The younger teachers seemed more cool, he was really dapper with these arm braces on his shirt sleeves, and worked hard to bring the subject to life for people, with a youthful energy.” “Maybe because Buckhaven was his first school everything was new for him and us, and everything seemed like a journey for all of us. The thing I loved about Mr Hunt was that he had a a sense of internationalism about him and wanted to bring a sense of the world to the classroom” she adds. Former Scottish Conservative leader Baroness Ruth Davidson I don’t think I would be an MSP if I had not taken modern studies in school.” – Alex Cole-Hamilton Lib Dem leader Alex Cole-Hamilton also remembers his old teacher Paul Hunt being sharply dressed with a genuine passion for modern studies. “Mr Hunt I remember had these very fetching waistcoats and he always had these bicycle clips around his sleeves which we were slightly baffled by at the time, but I now understood to be the height of fashion, so he was always quite a well-dressed man!” Alex now passes on his own enthusiasm for modern studies when he visits schools and talks to students, and although he went on to study politics and international relations at Aberdeen University he credits those high school modern studies classes in Fife for putting him on the path to Holyrood. “I say look if you’re interested in politics get involved in modern studies. It is such a great entry into the world of public policy but also human rights, state craft and everything” “I was quite political at an early age and I wanted an outlet for that, and modern studies certainly gave me that and channeled me in directions I would never have gone. And I don’t think I would be an MSP if I had not taken modern studies in school.” Alex Cole-Hamilton, Scottish Liberal Democrats Changing curriculum So what were young Baroness Davidson and young Cole-Hamilton learning back in their modern studies classes 30 years ago? Veteran teacher Paul Hunt says a lot has changed over the years but back then they’d be studying concepts of democracy and holding mock elections in class. “We looked at things like injustice and human rights and at higher level we would be doing democracy in the USA. But these days we look at Scottish democracy that’s the difference now we have the Scottish Parliament and we’re teaching the kids about politics and democracy in Scotland.” Did you know? Cabinet Secretary for Europe Jenny Gilruth was a modern studies teacher in Fife before she became a politician. The internet too has radically changed how modern studies is taught, bring the digital information age into every lesson. “I have been saying to my kids all week I believe you are the most literate generation there has ever been because you have access to mobile devices all the time.” “I encourage my kids during lessons to get out their mobile devices and research something, looking at false information and fake news. Thirty years ago computing was just coming into schools, we had a few computers and we never used them. But now they all have access to the internet and I encourage them to use it.” Help support quality local journalism … become a digital subscriber to the Evening Telegraph

Paul Hunt Investments

2 Investments

Paul Hunt has made 2 investments. Their latest investment was in Silent Power as part of their Series A - II on May 5, 2011.

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Paul Hunt Investments Activity

investments chart

Date

Round

Company

Amount

New?

Co-Investors

Sources

5/20/2011

Series A - II

Silent Power

$0.25M

No

12/27/2010

Series A

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$99M

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0

Date

5/20/2011

12/27/2010

Round

Series A - II

Series A

Company

Silent Power

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Amount

$0.25M

$99M

New?

No

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Co-Investors

Sources

0

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