Christine Bids Farewell
One of the best known
faces at Hethersett Middle School has retired after 18 years.
Coultman said goodbye to staff and children on Thursday, expressing the
wish that: “In some small way people will remember me.”
Christine came to the
school in 1988 after teaching in Africa for two years and over the years
built up a strong reputation in the areas of physical education and
Christine was born,
raised and educated in Blackburn, Lancashire, and trained to be a teacher
at Chorley. Whilst there she met her future husband Brian. After working
in Lancashire for a while, the couple moved to Dover before both obtaining
teaching posts in Togo.
Having trained as a
secondary school teacher, Christine found herself teaching nursery age
children. By that time the Coultman’s also had two young sons of their
own – Jonathan and Daniel.
Two weeks after they
arrived in Africa, there was an attempted coup:
“The rebels were
put down and we just carried on,” Christine said.
Christine and Brian
returned to England in 1988 and shortly afterwards she joined the teaching
staff at Hethersett Middle, initially on a temporary contract.
Over the years
Christine has taught hundreds of children and her dearest wish is to be
“I will miss all
the talented and special children. If I have touched a few lives and made
a little difference to some people, then I will be very happy. I have
enjoyed my time at Hethersett. It has been like being part of a family and
I have made many friends,” she said.
Brian Coultman, who
is also a special needs teacher, will be retiring at Christmas and the
couple hope to travel. Christine is also looking to indulge her passion
for reading and hopes to spend more time with family and friends.
Staff at Hethersett
Middle held a special buffet lunch for her and, on the final morning of
term, she was presented with a croquet set at the leavers’ assembly.
“Over the past 18
years Christine has set up so many areas of school life that we are proud
of, including school sports and athletics, special needs and work in the
area of Religious Education. Many of the things she has put in place will
continue as we move to a junior school,” said Head Teacher Andy Whittle.
In thanking the
children for their good wishes, Christine said she had been “overwhelmed
by everybody’s kindness. I have had so many good wishes from parents. It
is so nice to be appreciated,” she said.