It has been a year since Dr Long was taken into hospital after contracting Covid-19 and it is a true miracle that he survived.
Dr Long joined Albyn School in 2008 and led the school through many impressive changes including new buildings, subjects, sports, opportunities and the reintroduction of boarding in 2016. He saw the school through some very testing and challenging times and we were very thankful for his innovation, support and creative leadership. However, the biggest challenge to date resulted in Dr Long falling ill and retiring early in September 2020.
Dr Long was a driving force for many positive changes during his time as Headmaster at Albyn School and we hope that he continues to inspire and encourage others.
We want to say a huge thank you to Dr Long and wish him all the happiness, good health and restful retirement with his wife, Mrs Long.
Unfortunately, Dr Long did not get the chance to say farewell last year but he has kindly put a few words together to let us know how the past year has been.
Dr Ian Long AKC PHD FRGS FRSA
Former Headmaster at Albyn School 2008-2020
“Albyn is soon to embark on the next stage of its journey under Stefan Horsman’s leadership. As many of you will already be aware he is brilliantly equipped to take Albyn forward as a consequence of both his ability and extensive teaching experience at some excellent schools.
I was asked about what life has been like for me since I left the Albyn. Like many parents, staff and pupils who have lived a half-life over the last year, I have been obliged to hunker down at home for much of the time. I did not anticipate that my four month Covid initiated hospital stay would leave me quite so weak for quite so long. Fortunately, I have been able to access help to put me back together. I am getting there one day at a time but am very grateful to be alive thanks to our wonderful NHS. As for my physiotherapist, my gratitude is qualified only by the pain she inflicts on me in the name of fitness and flexibility!
The well wishes and lovely messages from the Albyn Community over the past year also lifted my spirits greatly so I wanted to say thank you.
In terms of keeping myself busy, I have been helping some overseas students with their postgraduate applications to American and UK universities. I am amazed what some young people have achieved. Some have published work in highly reputable academic journals while others have set up companies and written for well-known magazines. I do no more than help them target their skills to the courses for which they are applying and refine their research proposals but I am grateful for the mental exercise.
Looking ahead, I still have some former colleagues to say farewell to and will visit with friends and family across the UK and abroad when restrictions permit. I was sorry not to have been able to see or speak with the Albyn Community before my retirement. However, it was a comfort to know that the governance of the School was in safe hands. Pupils’ interests and well-being continued to be looked after by teaching and non-teaching staff alike while the School’s Governors and senior management team used all their abilities and judgment to steer Albyn through this exceptionally challenging year.
I was so proud to hear how well the pupils handled the continuation of their studies during such a testing time. While in hospital, the nurses showed me the Albyn Lockdown Choir and Orchestra virtual performances along with the Young Musician of the Year Award and Closing Ceremony videos and many photos from across the school which brightened those dark and difficult days.
Albyn School has a strong community of pupils, parents, guardians, former pupils, staff and friends of the school. It is clear to see that everyone has worked together in supporting one another in different ways and I hope that this sense of community continues to flourish.
As regularity returns and the school’s activities recommence, pupils will soon be enriched by their endeavours in music, art, drama and sport. Albyn pupils have shown their strength, resilience and positivity throughout this past year and they should be so proud of how well they have done. I feel confident that Albyn’s youth and vigour together with its experienced leadership and caring staff will soon guide the school community back to a sense of normality.
I wish Stefan the best of luck as Head of Albyn School and know that you will all welcome him into the Albyn Community with open arms (socially distanced of course!).”