Search

School stalwart retires from Drake Infant, Thetford

13:00 05 April 2012

Teaching assistant Jill Sayer who is retiring after 25 years, pictured with some of the Year 1 children she works with at Drake Infant School. Picture: Denise Bradley

Teaching assistant Jill Sayer who is retiring after 25 years, pictured with some of the Year 1 children she works with at Drake Infant School. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant

A popular teaching assistant has retired just days after her 65th birthday amid celebration and well-wishes from staff and pupils.

shares

Jill Sayer, who turned 65 last week, left Drake Infant School in Thetford where she taught hundreds of children and supported numerous lessons since joining in 1991.

After 21 years at the school, on Fairfields, she now intends to take it easy and put her feet up.

Her last days were celebrated with a special assembly in which youngsters read out poems they had written especially for the occasion.

Mrs Sayer, from Bridgham, whose husband has also recently retired, said: “The time is right to move on. I was a bit emotional in our assembly but I’ve had some good years and it’s time for another phase in my life.” Her work over the years has included supporting numeracy lessons, teaching phonics, one-to-one work with the pupils and in particular helping create a garden in the school grounds which she helped the youngsters tend to.

Mrs Sayer, who was presented with a vase and year’s membership to the National Trust as a leaving gift, added she would return to the school to help the children continue with it.

She said: “I think the nice thing about retirement is you don’t have to plan. It’s very nice not to be tied down to the school holidays and I’m going to garden and walk.

“I want to stop the connection completely though and will still come back to visit - it’s an important part of my life.

“Things have changed a lot from when I started but teaching assistants have always been an important part of the team in this school - we’ve always had a hands on role. “It’s been a very happy time and it’s been a good experience. It’s a very inclusive school and you learn a lot from people around you and the teaching staff over the years and they’ve been very supportive.

“The school has also encouraged training so I could continue with personal development.”

Head Mary Bartrop said Mrs Sayer had been her teaching assistant when she started at the school 18 years ago, and added she was “incredible”.

“It’s a credit to her that she’s been here for so long and affected so many children’s lives,” she said. “She’ll be sorely missed. We wish her a long and happy retirement.”

shares

0 comments

Other news

21 minutes ago
East Anglian Ambulance Trust ambulance answering emergency call in Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams

A man has been taken to hospital following a crash at Croxton, near Thetford.

Yesterday, 11:33
Aerial view of RAF Mildenhall. Picture: Mike Page

The government has been given three months to “make its mind up” over potential military use of RAF Mildenhall.

Yesterday, 10:51
The Eastern Daily Press Thetford office officially opens in Kings house. Thetford and Brandon Times Editor Andrew Fitchett outside the office with guests.
Picture by: Sonya Duncan

Exciting times ahead were promised for Thetford as the EDP opened a new office in the town yesterday.

Fri, 17:36
One of the kittens that was neglected by an owner in Thetford.

A woman has been fined and banned from keeping animals after neglecting a mother cat and four kittens - two of which died.

Most Read

Yesterday, 10:51
The Eastern Daily Press Thetford office officially opens in Kings house. Thetford and Brandon Times Editor Andrew Fitchett outside the office with guests.
Picture by: Sonya Duncan

Exciting times ahead were promised for Thetford as the EDP opened a new office in the town yesterday.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:33
Aerial view of RAF Mildenhall. Picture: Mike Page

The government has been given three months to “make its mind up” over potential military use of RAF Mildenhall.

Read more
Fri, 16:46
East Anglian Ambulance Trust ambulance answering emergency call in Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams

A woman in her 20s has suffered minor injuries after her car hit a tree on the A134 near Thetford.

Read more
21 minutes ago
East Anglian Ambulance Trust ambulance answering emergency call in Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams

A man has been taken to hospital following a crash at Croxton, near Thetford.

Read more
Fri, 17:36
One of the kittens that was neglected by an owner in Thetford.

A woman has been fined and banned from keeping animals after neglecting a mother cat and four kittens - two of which died.

Read more

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 1°C

min temp: -1°C

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Thetford and Brandon e-edition today E-edition