Former rugby league star enjoying new career as a teacher

A former rugby league star has found another way to inspire youngsters after swapping the pitch for the classroom.

Friday, 16th April 2021, 3:01 pm
Updated Friday, 16th April 2021, 3:02 pm
Stuart Howarth

Stuart Howarth, who went through the Wigan Warriors Academy, played more than 100 times in the Super League including spells at Salford, St Helens and Wakefield.

But he has since left behind the rugby ball and picked up test tubes after pursuing a career as in teaching.

Stuart now works as a science teacher at St Peter’s Catholic High School in Orrell, helping pupils work towards their GCSEs.

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Stuart in his playing days

He said: “If you want to make a difference to people in general, and have a significant impact on people every single day, then teaching is for you.”

Stuart grew up in Wigan and played rugby league with his home town club’s academy, kick-starting a career which saw him play at several teams, including Hull FC and Bradford Bulls.

He later went from being a full-time professional rugby player to a part-time player for Workington Town and then Whitehaven.

That meant Stuart spent less time training and was able to pursue other interests.

He started teaching in 2016 at Edstart, an alternative provision facility for children who are not suitable for mainstream education, and spent two years there.

He enjoyed making a difference in the lives of the boys, seeing them at their starting points and the progress they made each lesson, each term and each year.

He said: “You can literally see them building and progressing and becoming better people.

“It is observing the day-to-day and long-term progress that is most rewarding.”

Stuart, who is now 31, decided to study for PGCE (Postgraduate Certificate in Education) in 2018/19 and then became a newly qualified teacher (NQT) in September 2019, securing a position at St Peter’s High School.

He also has a sports and exercise science degree and a masters in nutrition, physiology and biochemistry.

To find out more about how to become a teacher, go to