Surprise farewell as England's top primary head bows out


Neil Bellis

A CHESTER headteacher was treated to surprise reunion when friends, former colleages and pupils arrived for an impromptu retirement party.

About 30 people attended the surprise get-together in honour of Pip Rowe, head of St Oswald’s Primary in Mollington, who was retiring after 40 years as a teacher.

Mrs Rowe, who had been at St Oswald’s since it opened 17 years ago and spent eight as head, was astonished when old colleages, pals from university and ex-pupils arrived at St Oswald’s for her retirement party.

Mrs Rowe said: “Everyone from every part of my career came. It was really special, an amazing afternoon.

“I wasn’t expecting anything – it was all down to my wonderful staff, my husband Andrew and my children Peter and Rachel.

“Teaching’s a very special job, the best job in the world. You touch a lot of people lives and you don’t realise it. I’m grateful to everyone I’ve taught and known in my career for this wonderful surprise.”

Mrs Rowe plans to travel during her retirement and is looking forward to lunches with friends. She’s currently busy helping plan her daughter’s wedding in August.

Mrs Rowe leaves the school on a high. St Oswald’s has  reached the top of the national league tables for results and attainment.

Mrs Pip Rowe said: “I’ve  always had the most amazing team of teachers and support staff.

“There is a great family feel to the school.

“We’re at the top of the national primary school league tables and I’m tremendously proud of that.”

New head Dave Wallace will start after Easter.

l Last year St Oswald’s was named the best performing  primary school in the country.

The school, on Grove Road, achieved top results with 100 per cent of all  pupils achieving a Level 4 or above in reading, writing and arithmatic, the Key Stage 2 (KS2) tables reveal.

Pupils achieved an average point  score of 35.4 – making the school the  best primary in the country for the  essential criteria.

See full story in the Chester Leader

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