Final duty for Harpenden headteacher who turned primary school around

Reception children from Sauncey Wood school enjoy their new playground ofiicially opened by chairman

Reception children from Sauncey Wood school enjoy their new playground ofiicially opened by chairman of the community fund of the Harpenden trust Norman Hoare and L-R committee member Anthony Steele, co-chair of friends of Sauncey Wood Ali Collins, chair of resources committee Rachel Angus and headmaster John Burt - Credit: Archant

Departing headteacher John Burt had the satisfaction of seeing the official opening of the playground carried out before leaving the primary school he has turned around.

The Friends of Sauncey Wood primary school in Harpenden made an application to the Harpenden Trust community fund to pay for playground markings for the reception years and a second netball court.

They received over £2,000 for the work to be carried out and Norman Hoare, former head of St George’s school and chairman of the trust’s community fund, cut a ribbon on the playground to officially mark the opening.

He was surrounded by young children dressed in costumes who were able to ‘drive’ along the newly-marked lanes once the ribbon had been cut.

The ceremony was one of the last formal events carried out at the school before the departure of Mr Burt who has seen numbers at the school increase from just 63 when he took over as head a decade ago to over 210 now.

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Not only is the school booming but the Friends managed to raise a record-breaking £17,000 in the past year.

A barbecue was organised on Saturday giving nearly 300 past pupils, staff and families a chance to say their farewells to Mr Burt and a big leaving assembly was held on Tuesday, the last day of term.

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Ali Collins, co chair of the Friends of Sauncey Wood, said: “It is a fabulous school and I am thrilled with it. It is a proper community school.”

The new head is Steve Lloyd, deputy head of a school in Hemel Hempstead.

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