Much loved teaching assistant retires after 36 years at Chesterfield primary school

A much loved teaching assistant has retired after 36 years service at the same Chesterfield primary school.

Thursday, 22nd July 2021, 1:50 pm
Updated Thursday, 22nd July 2021, 2:36 pm
Teaching assistant Chris Williams retired on Thursday after 36 years at Holme Hall Primary School

Chris Williams was given a warm send off by staff and pupils at Holme Hall Primary School on Thursday, July 22.

Speaking at a special leavers assembly, headteacher Jackie Littlechilds thanked the ‘amazing’ teaching assistant for her long standing service and her dedication to helping the generations of families she has seen pass through the school.

She said: “You have been amazing. You are the heart and soul of Holme Hall Primary School. I know you have had a massive impact on thousands of children and made a difference to their lives and a difference to the grown ups too.

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Teaching assistant Chris Williams retired on Thursday after 36 years at Holme Hall Primary School

"You are one of those people that cares and looks after people. I want to say a massive thank you from the bottom of my heart for everything you have done for us and for Holme Hall.”

Mrs Williams, 70, started at the Taddington Road based school in the 1980s initially as maternity cover before taking on a more permanent role.

Over the years, she has lent her hand to various tasks – from helping out in art, maths and English lessons, to joining the children as they embark on school trips.

Teaching assistant Chris Williams retired on Thursday after 36 years at Holme Hall Primary School

“On this job you’re learning every single day. There hasn’t been a day go by where I haven’t learnt something new,” Mrs Williams said.

“I always say to the children that I remember their parents starting school, then I’ve seen their children start school. It’s been lovely to see and it really is a lovely school.”

On what has kept her at Holme Hall Primary for so long, she added: “It has to be the ethos of the school. It’s been that from day one – that it’s not just about the education, it’s about the whole child, and the staff are very much singing from the same hymn sheet.

"I will miss it, however I will still be coming down on a Monday evening because I run guides from here.”

Mrs Williams was presented with an array of cards, all of which were made by the pupils, during the leavers assembly on Thursday.

She was also given some gardening equipment, including a strimmer and a special engraved plant pot, bought with money donated by parents.

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