DESCRIBED as ‘Wonder Woman’ by teachers, colleagues and parents attached to Hempshill Primary School in Bulwell, ‘Miss Sheila’, aka Sheila Jackman, has called time on her long and productive career, retiring in a blaze of glory.
Cards, gifts and flowers were showered on the popular teaching assistant who fought back the tears as glowing tributes were paid to her during a surprise farewell celebration.
Sheila (62), who lives close to the school on Armstrong Road, began working at Hempshill Hall as a cleaner 17 years ago and during her fulfilling time there has made her mark on most aspects of school life.
As well as spending 18 years as a member of the auxiliary staff, which included active service as a midday supervisor, Sheila ‘graduated’ to become a teaching assistant, working with some of the school’s youngest and most vulnerable children.
One of her “greatest joys” during her time at Hempshill was being given the responsibility of looking after special needs pupil Yale Ellis Smith, who sadly died at the age of seven.
“Yale was a little star and will always have a special place in my heart,” said Sheila.
Helen Ridge, the school’s head teacher, described Sheila as an “unsung hero” and said that nothing was too much trouble for her.
Foundation teacher Perminda Uppal said: “Sheila has a heart of gold. She has been a great role model and will be sorely missed.
Married for 41 years to her devoted husband, Roy, Sheila has two children and they are expecting their first grandchild.
“Hempshill is a wonderful school and feel privileged to have been part of its history,” said Sheila. “My life has been enriched by the school in so many ways.”
n OUR PHOTO shows Sheila reading to some of the children on her last day (PHOTO AND STORY BY: Peter Jordan).