PUPILS at Swallownest Primary have waved goodbye to a beloved nursery nurse.
Jane Gray has taught hundreds of children at the Rotherham Road school during her 22 years working there.
She has worked under three headteachers, various Ofsted inspections and saw the introduction of the National Curriculum.
But after the Easter holidays she will no longer have to set her alarm clock and live by her diary.
Instead she is planning to spend more time with her three grandchildren and learn how to play the accordion.
“I’m going to really miss my friends and colleagues at the school,” said Mrs Gray, 58.
“I’ve worked under three headteachers, an acting headteacher, the National Curriculum introduced and a new foundation unit formed.”
“It’s going to be different (retirement). I’m going to have a lot more free time to do different things.”
“I’m going to spend more time with my three grandchildren and learn how to play the accordion, something I’ve always wanted to do.”
Mrs Gray, from Todwick, felt 58 was the right age to retire.
She said: “I never planned on coming back to work after I had my children.”
“I decided that 58 was a good age to retire because I can go out and do other things.”
I just love working with children.”
“It’s nice seeing children I’ve taught coming back as parents. They say to me that they remember having fun with me and so want their children to have fun again.”
Mrs Gray was presented with flowers, cards and gifts from pupils during a special assembly on Tuesday afternoon.
Headteacher Richard Chipchase said Mrs Gray will be sorely missed by everyone at the school.
He added: “She is extremely professional and good at her job. and we have calculated that she has taught more than 600 children, many of whom have returned back to the school as parents.”
“We are very sad to see her go and she will be sorely missed by everyone.”
“On behalf of staff, governors, parents and children past and present we wish her a long and happy retirement.”