Tributes to retiring Whittlesey headteacher as dining room extension is named Sargent’s Mess

STAFF put on a show and a dining room extension was named after a headteacher who retired after 16 years at the helm of a Fenland school.

Margaret Sargent retired as head of Alderman Jacobs School, Whittlesey, at the end of the autumn term.

During a ‘farewell week’ Mrs Sargent unveiled a plaque which named the extension to the school’s dining hall ‘Sargent’s Mess’. She also enjoyed a tea party and staff put on a performance at a leaving assembly.

Tribute was paid to Mrs Sargent’s work by Fenland councillor Martin Curtis, chairman of governors at Alderman Jacobs School. He has been a governor there for 15 years.

He said: “Alderman Jacobs School has always delivered for our children. Margaret took that to a whole new level, delivering a school for Whittlesey that has high results, high aspirations and a great team of staff.

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“It is easy to point to an inspection rating and say a school is outstanding, my belief is that AJS is outstanding in every sense and not just in the more limited view that Ofsted takes of education - and Margaret Sargent is the main reason for that.

“I cannot say enough how much Margaret has done for AJS and indeed for Whittlesey, and I wish her many happy travel filled days in the future.”

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Nicola Parker, deputy head at Alderman Jacobs, said: “I have not worked with a more inspiring head teacher whilst working in education. I will always value working with Margaret, who is a truly outstanding leader.

“Margaret leaves a strong legacy behind her, she has made a difference and will be missed by everyone in the school community.”

Mrs Sargent said: “Sixteen fantastic years at Alderman Jacobs School seem to have passed so quickly. The school is outstanding due to its staff, governors, parents and last, but most importantly, its children.

“Everyone has a passion to do their best and it’s been a delight, on my final day, to experience so many best wishes from the whole school community. Even my chair of Governors appeared in a tutu and tights at a wonderful farewell assembly the staff prepared and presented for me.

“Alderman Jacobs School will, I am sure, continue to thrive and prosper in the years to come.”

Kay Corley, headteacher at Gunthorpe Primary School in Peterborough, takes over as headteacher of Alderman Jacobs School at the start of the summer term.

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