Farewell from pre-school manager

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A former pre–school manager is reflecting upon her years of work with local youngsters as she goes on to further her career.

Lulie Haylock, of Rowsley, has left her position at Rowsley Pre-School, based at the village hall in School Lane, on a high after helping to shape the group over the years.

The mother-of-five started volunteering at the pre-school in 2005 while taking her son there.

“I got a good rapport with a particular child who was there and they asked me to stay and help - that’s what I did,” she said.

“I got into it and thought, ‘I quite enjoy this’.”

Lulie completed a teaching assistant training course before going on to do a NVQ 3. She is still undergoing further education in the sector.

Following a disappointing Ofsted report in 2006, she and her team worked hard to pull the standards at the preschool up. Lulie became a supervisor at the preschool shortly afterwards.

“We started afresh with a new staff in 2007,” she said. “So from then on we worked very hard to get it going.”

Lulie had to rewrite policies and procedures the preschool had in place and keep updating them in line with government agendas.

Classed as being voluntary independent, the pre-school got a lot of help from Derbyshire County Council.

She worked so hard that she ended up in hospital with an illness which doctors told her had been exasperated by stress.

Former treasurer Sam Hutchinson, of Rowsley, who also left recently, started volunteering at the pre-school after taking her children there.

She took the role of treasurer and helped Lulie and the chairman, Polly Haylock, run the group.

Sam got involved initially because she understood the value of being able to send her child to a local pre-school.

“We had open days and held fundraising events,” Lulie said.

One of the most successful events the pre-school arranged was a ‘Rowsley day’, during which people were invited to take part in traditional village fete activities.

The popularity of the pre-school grew over time and in 2009 it had a much improved Ofsted report in which it was found to be outstanding in several areas.

After eight years with the preschool, Lulie made the hard decision to leave earlier this year. The former committee called a meeting with parents, informing them they would need to find a new committee to take over the running of the pre-school.

Lulie gave her best wishes to the new committee and staff, as well as the new manager Wayne Boyer.

For more information on the pre-school email rowsleypreschool@gmail.co.uk