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Single dad’s juggling act as he studies, tutors, and parents his children

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Published on 30 April 2020

Craig Remmer with his sons Luke and Caleb
Craig Remmer with his sons Luke and Caleb

Craig Remmer may be in lockdown, but he’s raring to go.

As he prepares for a new career as a teacher, the 33-year-old dad is learning to multi-task like never before.

Craig, from Seaham, County Durham, who is also the recipient of the University of Sunderland’s biggest single scholarship, is getting lots of practice for his new role as he is currently in lockdown with his twin nine year-old boys.

With just a few weeks left of his Primary Education degree, the dad, like many others, is home schooling – while still studying.

“To be honest lockdown has left me with quite a bit of spare time.” says Craig. “I have made sure I am up to date with all work for University, and keeping busy by doing all of the little jobs around the house that you usually don’t have time for.

“But most importantly, I’m able to spend huge amounts of quality time with my twins, Luke and Caleb.”

Craig has been supported in his studies with a DOSH (Development Office Scholarship) award. The £10,000 Sir Tom Cowie Excellence Scholarship is the University of Sunderland’s biggest scholarship, supported by the Sir Tom Cowie Charitable Trust, and supports excellent students from the Sunderland region in either education or business.

Craig says the scholarship has had a huge impact on his studies – and now he is preparing for a teaching career with a first class honours degree.

“The scholarship has supported me hugely in my final year of study. It has enabled me to stop working and to fully dedicate my time to my course. It has meant that I have had more time to spend on written assignments and concentrate on my placements.

“I am now on track to graduate with a First, which will help when applying for jobs. I honestly do not think I would have achieved the grades I have without the scholarship.”


Craig is grateful for the support of Sir Tom Cowie’s foundation, and intends to give back as much as he can to his North East home.

“My plan is to remain in the Sunderland/Durham area if possible,” says Craig. “But in the current situation, work may take me outside of the region, then my ultimate goal will always be to return home and teach.”

Professor Lynne McKenna, Dean of the Faculty of Education and Society, said: “There has never been a better time to enter the teaching profession.

“During the past few weeks, we have witnessed the emergence of a new found respect and admiration for teachers; whether this is from those parents attempting to home school or from parents of key workers who are grateful that our schools have remained open, enabling them to carry out their vital work.

“The teaching profession, as ever has risen to the challenge, providing selfless public service in these extra-ordinary times.”