We met at Auckland Teachers’ College and got married soon after! We have one son, Timothy, who was born profoundly deaf. As a result Jillian trained as a teacher of the deaf and Brian was on the Board of Spectrum Care for nine years and was the Foundation Chairman of the NZ Foundation of the Deaf.
We enjoyed teaching very much. Jillian taught at Kelston School for Deaf, Sunnybrae and Epsom Normal schools, and Brian lectured at North Shore and Auckland Teachers’ College.
The last 24 years of Brian’s working life were spent in educational publishing. We published titles to help children learn to read, maths and science. The way New Zealand taught children to read was highly regarded, and our books were highly regarded too. Later, Jillian joined the firm as a consultant, and is the author of 200 ‘little’ books to help children learn to read. She also was co-developer of an innovative maths programme. We also developed educational television programmes, interactive CD-Roms, and created programmes for the Internet.
This provided opportunities to travel the world to wherever children and teachers were using our books - the U.S, U.K, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Poland and many more. It was exciting to see the programmes operating and to see children’s delight in new books and methods.
And then, our next change - Grace Joel - was also exciting for us. This is a true village - a small community of staff and residents, who are social, smart, caring and interesting to be with.