Unity Schools Partnership

MAKING REMARKABLE CHANGE HAPPEN

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The year 2020 was always going to be a special one for Amanda Denley.

In September, the Learning Support Adviser will celebrate an impressive 30 years at Burton End Primary Academy.

And refusing to let lockdown and uncertainties bring down the spirits of her colleagues at the Haverhill primary school, Amanda had just the thing to brighten up staff member’s days.

Showcasing the spirit at the school, staff started a What’s App group to keep everyone updated and make them feel included at every opportunity.

To add a sense of fun, Amanda took it upon herself to serenade colleagues with daily songs – featuring everything from Vera Lynn to Stormzy joining the chat.

She admitted: “It all started when a staff member set a singing challenge on the What’s App group.

“I have never done karaoke, but I thought I would give it a go – and it has gone on from there.

“If my singing makes just one staff member smile, then that’s fine with me.”

Explaining why she has stayed at the school for so long, Amanda added: “I just love my job. It has always fitted in with my children and my life and every day is so different.

“I am part of a great team at Burton End and everyone, including students and parents, have done a remarkable job this year.”

Karen Sheargold, Headteacher at Burton End, said: “Not only has Amanda been supporting the children every day since lockdown, but she has also tending to the school grounds, including planting up our new a memorial garden.

“She has also kept staff morale high with her daily singing on the What’s App group to cheer us up and keep staff morale high.

“She is a truly wonderful lady – our Dame Denley.”

If my singing makes just one staff member smile, then that’s fine with me.

AMANDA DENLEY,
LEARNING SUPPORT ADVISER,
BURTON END PRIMARY ACADEMY