Susan Leach, a lecturer in education at Birmingham university, died, aged 63, after a short illness on December 23, 2006. She was well-known in schools and colleges throughout the Birmingham area, mainly for her work in training secondary English teachers. Since 1993, she had been responsible for running the PGCE English course.
Mrs Leach was probably best known for her innovative ways of teaching Shakespeare, bringing the texts alive and ensuring pupils were involved and excited. She was, above all, keen to see learning take place in an interesting and challenging environment.
After studying at Cambridge university, she taught English at schools in the Midlands and was head of English at Frank F Harrison community school, Walsall, between 1981 and 1993.
While in Walsall, she set up and ran classroom-based support for teaching Shakespeare at all levels. Her published works included contributions to the Cambridge Schools Shakespeare series in 1993.
In 1994, she edited two books for the Exploring Shakespeare series, A Midsummer Night's Dream and Julius Caesar, and wrote a book on teaching techniques for Romeo and Juliet. Her most recent book, How to Be a Successful Secondary Teacher, appeared in 2006, published by Continuum.
She was extremely popular with her PGCE students and renowned for her enthusiasm, support, and ability to motivate. Her ideas and beliefs will continue to be disseminated in classrooms throughout the country.