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Teacher steps in to save pre-school at St Joseph's Catholic Primary School in Bishop's Stortford

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A teacher at a Bishop's Stortford primary school has stepped in to save its nursery provision.

The pre-school at the Great Hadham Road campus of St Joseph's Catholic Primary was set to close its doors following the retirement of much-loved managers Anne Jarrett and Nicola Murray after 20 years at the helm.

St Joseph's Pre-school, formerly St Joseph's Nursery, has been caring for youngsters since 1981 and Kim Foster was determined to keep it going.

Nicola Murray, left, and Kim Foster, right, with the St Joseph's Pre-school children (58137919)
Nicola Murray, left, and Kim Foster, right, with the St Joseph's Pre-school children (58137919)

The 50-year-old is a qualified teacher with 25 years' experience and has been at St Joseph's for the past nine years.

Mrs Foster said: "They were hoping to sell the business but it fell through and it was going to close. My own sons, now 19 and 15, went here and I know how important the pre-school is to everyone at St Joseph's.

"I didn't want to let them down as they've devoted so many years to keeping families happy. It provides wrap-around care to children who go to nursery at St Joseph's too."

Anne Jarrett (58137921)
Anne Jarrett (58137921)

Mrs Jarrett, 65, has worked for the pre-school since 1990 and before that volunteered while her own children were pupils – 40 years in all.

She said: "I will miss looking after the pre-school but I have 10 grandchildren of my own and I'll still be here picking them up and seeing everyone.

"I've seen children grow up then bring me their own offspring to look after and even their grandchildren! It's been lovely caring for so many children."

Mother-of-two Mrs Murray said: "We were so delighted when Kim said she wanted to take it over. We know that the pre-school will continue with the same ethos and values and she's a qualified teacher with qualifications in SEN (special educational needs) and children's mental health. The children will receive the best education and care."

St Joseph's headteacher Peter Coldwell said: "On behalf of the school, I would like to thank Anne and Nicola for their dedication to our community and the many years of service to the generations of pupils who fed into our school. We look forward to working with Mrs Foster as she prepares our nursery cohorts in the years to come."

See stjoespre.co.uk for information about September pre-school admissions.

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