Thanks for '˜outstanding' head

Nearly a quarter of a century of service to education was marked with the presentation of a keep-sake gift to outstanding former village head teacher Cath Pearson.

Monday, 11th November 2013, 6:28 am
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 6:48 am
Lynn Wilson (correct) - chair of governors presents gift to Cath Pearson who earlier this year retired as Head of St. Peter's, Ardingly. Pic Steve Robards

After 23 years Cath retired from St Peter’s Primary School in Ardingly at the end of the last summer term in July.

Her teaching career there began in 1990 as one of the first job share teaching posts in the county. After 10 years she became a Key Stage 1 full-time teacher.

In 2006 she became acting head, which then became another job share post with Janice Gott in 2007, before becoming full-time again in 2009.

Under Cath’s leadership St Peter’s celebrated a 2012 Ofsted inspection which classified it as ‘Outstanding’.

The Ofsted report said the “determined and rigorous leadership of the headteacher and governors” had enabled significant improvements and raised its effectiveness from ‘good’ at the time of the last inspection. The 134-pupil community was described as smaller than average but “an outstanding school where pupils’ achievement is outstanding and their efforts are consistently recognised and rewarded”.

The children’s attainment was said to be “consistently well above average by the time they leave the school”. Additionally, the overall quality of teaching was described as “outstanding”.

Staff, governors, friends and heads from neighbouring schools as well as new head Jamie Savage, attended Cath’s leaving party in July when they all signed a large, ceramic plate as a memento.

The plate was later glazed at ‘Fun Pots’ in Haywards Heath and was presented to Cath by chair of the governors Lynn Wilson last week.

At the leaving party Mr Wilson thanked Cath on behalf of the school community, past and present, for her service.

Handing over her gift Mr Wilson again thanked the former head for her long service and wished her and her husband, Jim, a very happy retirement.

Cath said: “For 23 years St Peter’s has been a big part of my life. It is a very special school in beautiful surroundings with lovely pupils.

“I shall very much miss being part of school life but look forward to having more time to spend with my family.”