Ashton Under Hill First School

Shaping Bright Futures Together

Thank you all, from Mrs Stephenson

I would like to thank each and every one of you for the lovely ‘send off’ which you gave me and for the many, many wonderful gifts. To say that I was overcome at the end of term is an understatement. Working with small children, there is very little that can be kept secret and I was genuinely completely surprised and delighted by the very thoughtful and joyful ‘street party’ at school last Friday and the many other lovely surprises since then, all of which have made for a very special end of term, although obviously I have mixed feelings about leaving a job which I have loved and which has given me such pleasure and fulfilment for the past 12 years.

As a parent myself of young people who attended Ashton First School, I am very aware of how incredibly fortunate I am that my children were educated in such a caring and nurturing environment. We talk about the ‘Ashton school family’ and that’s just what it is. It’s not something anyone can prescribe, it’s a combination of the people who make it,  the staff, the children, the parents, the governors and the support of the wider village community with common goals and a shared sense of belonging and wanting what is best for our children.

The decision to step back from teaching here has not been an easy one and it is one over which I have deliberated long and hard. Teaching primary children is the job I always wanted to do and I’m as passionate about it today as I was when I first started, so stopping is not easy, but for me and my family the time is right and, whilst it’s not easy stepping back when all is going so well, it’s much better to end on a high than for everyone to be twiddling their thumbs waiting for you to move on!

I would like to say thank you to everyone who has made my years at Ashton such very happy ones.

First and foremost, to the children, present and past, for making every day special and different, for your laughter, enthusiasm and trust, for your willingness to have a go and for being an inspiration and a delight to teach.

To the parents and families who have entrusted your children to our care and, in so doing, have shared a very special chapter in their lives with me. 

To the governors of the school who work tirelessly behind the scenes to keep Ashton First School the happy, caring, nurturing and educational environment that it is and whose support and encouragement has never failed.

To Mrs Peacey who is the epitome of kindness and thoughtfulness and who, over the last two years, has led the school through the most traumatic and stressful period that education has seen in my lifetime and has done so with unswerving dedication, energy and consideration for her pupils and her staff.

And to the wonderful colleagues I have worked with, all of whom are friends as well as colleagues, and with whom I’ve shared so many special memories.

People say this is the end of one chapter and the start of the next, but I’m hoping my chapters can all merge together and that I might be able to keep the pages of this one going on and will be allowed to still, in some small way, be a part of the wonderful family that is Ashton under Hill First School.  I will always be glad to hear your news so please do keep in touch.

Thank you all and I hope you have a restful and healthy summer holiday.

 With very best wishes, 

Ali Stephenson

July 2021