Beloved teacher retires after 27 years
CAMBRIDGE Primary foundation phase bid farewell last Thursday to one of their beloved teachers, Cheryl Kent, with a beautiful assembly, as she retired after 27 years at the school.
Kent started teaching at Cambridge Primary in 1990 and taught Grade 2 pupils until she was asked to be the head of the foundation phase in 2008.
Her passion for art meant that during her time at Cambridge Primary, Kent built up the arts and culture scene at the school.
“I’m not art trained, but I love it so much. I was always interested in art, so I started art clubs and entered pupils into competitions as often as I could,” Kent said.
Today, Cambridge Primary regularly participates in the World Art Exhibition, the EL Fest art exhibition and the East London Primary Schools exhibition, among others.
“So many pupils have received gold medals and awards for their art, it’s so wonderful for them,” Kent said.
Before settling into Cambridge Primary and becoming part of a special family of selfless, caring and loving staff members, Kent taught at various schools in and around East London, including Selborne Primary and Hudson Park Primary.
Kent also coached the under-9A Hudson Park Primary rugby team through the 1978 season in which they remained unbeaten.
“It has been a lot of fun,” said Kent, reminiscing about the good times and sometimes funny personalities she has had the pleasure of teaching and coaching.
Many past pupils still come up to greet her with a happy and a sometimes unexpected “Hello, Mrs Kent!”
“Just the other day, I was greeted by a past pupil. I didn’t recognise him, but it really just warmed my heart to be remembered and greeted with such respect and fond memories,” Kent said.
Eleven of her past pupils have also become staff members at Cambridge Primary alongside her.
She hopes to spend the rest of the year relaxing and catching up on all her reading, scrapbooking and art, but the dedicated teacher promises she’ll never sit and do nothing.
“I have a lot of UFOs [Unfinished Objects] lying around the house, so I’m going to take some time to focus on that. I’ve just enrolled in a pottery class which I’m very excited about,” she said.
Kent will be helping out Sharon Mallinson from Sharon’s Art School from time to time, keeping her passions for art and teaching alive and well.
“Sharon is my dear friend and I’m looking forward to helping her at her school. I also can’t wait to finally finish reading a book,” Kent said.
While she looks forward to what is sure to be an art-filled future, Kent will remember her time at Cambridge Primary fondly.
“This school has been my home for so long. I’ve met so many wonderful children, parents and staff members who have taught me so much about myself and about life. I’m really going to miss all the laughs I have with the kids,” an emotional Kent said.
“The staff really live out our motto, “Non Vobis”, meaning “not for ourselves”. There is such a strong sense of unity, selflessness and love at this school and it has been a privilege to be a part of the Cambridge Primary family.”