Pupils dress up in pink in memory of Luton headteacher who passed away last month

A reading garden is being created to honour Sarah Pollard

Monday, 25th October 2021, 3:49 pm
Updated Monday, 25th October 2021, 3:50 pm
Staff and parents from Southfields school, all dressed in pink

A Luton school is celebrating the life of its headteacher by creating a reading garden in her memory.

Sarah Pollard, head of Southfield Primary School, died in September, only weeks after being diagnosed with breast cancer.

And last week staff and pupils all dressed in pink, to raise more than £450 for the reading garden and the charity Breast Cancer Now.

Interim head of school Sarah Baldwin said: "Miss Pollard had a love of reading and was passionate about children having access to and enjoying high quality literature. In her honour we will be creating a Reading Garden in our school, a space where a children can come and enjoy stories together."

Sarah, aged 45 has spent her entire school career in Luton, as a child at Hart Hill Nursery before attending Stopsley Primary, Putteridge High and Luton Sixth Form. She then worked as a teaching assistant in Hart Hill Primary for a year before studying for her teaching degree at the University of Hertfordshire.

She started her working career at Beech Hill Primary, then moved to Farley Hill Juniors before joining Chantry Primary where she worked her way up to deputy headteacher and then joining Southfield as headteacher.

Corisande Bateman, chief executive officer of the Pioneer Learning Trust said: "I have known Sarah for 16 years as a colleague and friend. She was an extremely special person, known for her sense of humour, her determination in fighting for what is right for children and education, and for her loyalty to Luton - the community she lived and worked in.

"Her resolve for children to have the best education possible is one of the many strengths she brought with her to Southfield in 2016 where she led the school forward to enjoy the success we are proud of today.

"Sarah was a significant presence in Southfield, known by all of the children and parents. She was fiercely protective of her school and loved all of the children as though they were her own. The cards made by pupils, and the well wishes sent by parents during her illness, demonstrate just how loved Sarah was by her school community. She will be sadly missed by all.

"Sarah was loved, not only by her own school community but by colleagues who worked with her at Chantry for 10 years and those who she worked with when supporting Whitefield for an extended period. Sarah was instrumental is setting up Pioneer Learning Trust and has influenced practice in each of our schools, taking her commitment to high quality education with her to every lesson, every conversation, every decision, every policy – to every aspect of her work. We are grateful to have known her, to have worked with her and to have benefited from her passion for learning. Her legacy will live on in our practice."

So far more than £3,000 has been raised in her name for two cancer charities.