A small win­dow but a big dif­fer­ence for school

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - SCHOOL’S NEWS -

THE HEAD­TEACHER of a school in Seer Green has re­tired af­ter 16 years in the role.

Ol­wyn Dav­i­son-Oak­ley stepped down from her post at Seer Green Church of Eng­land School on Thurs­day July 21.

Mrs Dav­i­son-Oak­ley qual­i­fied as a teacher when she was 21 and her ca­reer, which has taken her all over the south-east, has in­cluded spells teach­ing at Chal­font St Peter middle school – as it was known then – and Ger­rards Cross Church of Eng­land School.

The 59-year-old grand­mother and moth­erof-three said she is look­ing for­ward to spend­ing time with her fam­ily but has ‘mixed feel­ings’ about re­tire­ment.

“I’m ready to go and look for­ward to re­tire­ment but it will leave a big hole in my life,” she said.

She added: “When I came here I didn’t ex­pect to stay 16 years, but I didn’t an­tic­i­pate how spe­cial the chil­dren and fam­i­lies are in Seer Green, and how strong the ap­peal is to stay work­ing in the school.”

This was, she said, re­flected in the fact that peo­ple stay at the school and do not tend to move of­ten.

She added: “I would like to think that 16 years seems like a long time but you think that the school has been here since 1859 it’s only a small win­dow in the school’s his­tory.

“I would like to think in that win­dow I’ve been able to make a dif­fer­ence to the chil­dren and fam­i­lies here.

“It’s been a great priv­i­lege. Education was great to me and it’s nice to give some­thing back to so­ci­ety in this way.”

Ac­cord­ing to Mrs Dav­i­son-Oak­ley the best thing about teach­ing is the va­ri­ety and how ‘there’s never a two min­utes the same’, prais­ing the ex­cite­ment of the job as it ‘keeps you on your toes’.

Hav­ing over­seen many changes at the school, one of her favourite mem­o­ries was the time the of­fice over or­dered toi­let roll and with an abun­dance of pa­per lined the walls with it, cre­at­ing tun­nels and mazes for the kids to crawl through.

“It was hys­ter­i­cal,” she said.

Speak­ing be­fore her re­tire­ment she said: “It will be a sad day but you can’t dwell on the sad, you have to look for­ward to what the fu­ture holds, oth­er­wise you would never do any­thing dif­fer­ent.

“Peo­ple keep say­ing ‘it won’t be the same’ but it shouldn’t be the same, and the school de­serves to have some­body come with new ideas.”

She added: “The most im­por­tant thing for me is when you have chil­dren who aren’t par­tic­u­larly able chil­dren stand up and per­form on a stage when you never re­ally ex­pected them to be able to.

“When you have got things that have gone des­per­ately wrong for some­body and sud­denly it comes right.”

And added: “It’s when I see mem­bers of staff be­com­ing suc­cess­ful, it’s when I look at chil­dren and they look happy – that’s what mat­ters in the end.”

Farewell: Ol­wyn Dav­i­son-Oak­ley who has re­tired from her post at Seer School

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