After teaching at Woodlands since 1st September 1993 (yes, that’s 27 years!), Mrs Stark has made the difficult decision to retire from teaching. She’s decided it is time to hang up her whistle, unplug her SmartBoard (previously, it would have been ‘pack away her chalk’) & fold up her Infant Music Club music stand. We will miss Mrs Stark desperately – we’ll be lost without her.
She is well-respected not only within Woodlands but across Sefton too where she has held various roles for the local authority over the years: member of the School Readiness Team; Parent Coordinator; Good Practice Lead; Associate School Readiness Officer (to name but a few). Mrs Stark has also been one of Sefton’s lead moderators for the Early Years Profile since 1807.
Mrs Stark was instrumental in setting up our school nursery in 2017 (she’d long hankered after one) &, alongside Mrs Jones & Mr Anderson, has ensured it’s been a wonderful addition to Woodlands.
She has seen many changes in the teaching of Early Years in her time at Woodlands. She’s had to roll with the punches thrown by a myriad of government initiatives introduced over the years but has always managed to steer Woodlands safely through the storms of increasing educational legislation. Throughout it all she has ensured that the children begin their schooling at Woodlands in a happy, caring, secure & stimulating environment which sets our pupils up brilliantly for the rest of their time in school. Mrs Stark has always wanted the best for the children in her care.
As I’ve already stated, we will miss Mrs Stark, not only her expertise in Early Years, but her legendary organisational skills [Exhibit A: our triannual visit to Southport pantomime – ensuring 300+ children get safely to Southport Theatre & back] & her wicked sense of humour (it’s a good job our staffroom is well soundproofed). Most of all we will miss Mrs Stark’s friendship, she is such a kind, caring, considerate human being. We can’t be too sad though, we know she is going to be able to spend more time with her family & more time in the shed at the bottom of her garden (don’t ask!).
I could write reams telling you how wonderful Mrs Stark is but you already know that. Mrs Stark, being Mrs Stark, does not want “a fuss” to be made about her departure – however, anyone is wanting to make a wee bit of fuss, please feel free to drop off a donation in an envelope to the school office (marked ‘Mrs Stark’) before the end of the school year. We will be arranging a get together for staff to say a proper goodbye to Mrs Stark, but this will have to wait until after the summer holidays. It’s the end of an era, though I do have a suspicion that we will find Mrs Stark sneaking back into school at some stage in the not too distant future to be “an extra pair of hands” or to “hear a few readers”.