Get involved: Send your news, views, pictures and video by texting SUPIC to 80360 or email us.
Brighton teacher's lesson in romance
6:50pm Thursday 19th July 2012 in News
A couple are tying the knot after a sweet proposal.
Gary Shilladay proposed to fellow Dorothy Stringer School teacher Caroline Tack in front of more than 300 pupils.
Mr Shilladay, head of Year 9 and head of Latin, was greeted by whoops of approval as he took to the stage at the end of a special celebration assembly and presented his bride-to-be with a Haribo ring as part of his marriage proposal.
The couple, who live in Brighton, have been together for about six years after meeting while working at the school and will get married in front of 100 guests on Thursday, July 26.
Despite being engaged for more than a year Mr Shilladay said the sugary stunt was his way of telling pupils about his upcoming nuptials.
He said: “At the end of the celebration assembly I got the form teachers on stage, as we always do, and we played ‘Time of Your Life’ by Green day and sang along.
“As the teachers walked away I said, ‘Miss Tack, can you stay up here’. I took the Haribo out of my pocket |and then asked, ‘Will you still marry me?’”
Miss Tack said: “I said yes, as long as I can have the whole bag.”
Miss Tack, 28, teaches geography at the school and the couple visited Dorset at Easter 2011 when 35-year-old Mr Shilladay popped the question for real.
'Bit of fun'
He said: “Because I’m head of year we have to put together an end of year assembly and I was thinking about changes next year.
“The children needed to get used to Caroline changing her name and I thought it was an interesting way for the kids to get used to it and it’s a bit of fun.”
Miss Tack said: “It was a bit of fun but the kids liked it.
“Half of them were cheering and saying congratulations, the other half were saying, ‘what?’”
One parent, who asked not to be named, said: “My daughter came home and she was really excited.
“Mr Shilladay was on stage and he said he had a special question and then he pulled out a bag of Haribo and asked her.
“All the pupils were whooping and screaming.
“It’s all very positive – I think it’s amazing.”