JUST before Christmas children and staff at Kingsmoor Primary School will be saying a sad goodbye to Mick Bird, who has been headteacher since the school opened in 1994.

During the 25 years that Mr Bird has been the headteacher, the school has grown considerably and colleagues described his contribution to the school’s progress and achievements as ‘immense’.

One of the school’s governors, Geoff Sluman, said Mr Bird was ‘a complete professional, showing total care for the children and staff’.

He said: “Mr Bird has given to our children and our community and kept generations of children on course to achieve their potential and, in the majority of cases, exceed what they thought possible.

“He retires knowing that he is leaving the school in an excellent position with a team that he has put together and trained, meaning his influence will continue.”

Ahead of his retirement on Friday, December 20, Mr Bird was interviewed by a selection of Kingsmoor pupils.

When asked his favourite memory of Kingsmoor, Mr Bird said: “I still remember our opening day when we had all children and parents out on the playground and we let off a balloon into the sky for every child that was in the school – they had messages on and they went all over the country and Europe as well - so that was quite special.”

Mr Bird was also asked if he would miss being headteacher at Kingsmoor.

He responded: “Definitely. For 25 years that’s nearly all I’ve thought about and done.

“For a whole 25 years! Every day when I get up, weekends and holidays – I think about it everyday.

“So, when you’ve been doing something for that long, you’re bound to miss it.”

The chairman of governors Tracey Lowe said thanked Mr Bird on behalf of pupils, parents and staff past and present.

“I would like to thank Mr Bird for his total dedication to ensuring generations of pupils have left Kingsmoor Primary School with academic knowledge and fantastic memories inside and outside of the classroom including sports, cycling, nature rambles, and sliding down snowy hills on trays to name but a few.

“These activities have built confidence, encouraged team work and helped to ensure that pupils who leave Kingsmoor are well prepared for the next stage of the educational journey.”

Ex-students, parents, friends and colleagues are welcome to ‘drop in’ to the school on Tuesday, December 17 between 2.15pm and 4.30pm to say hello to Mr Bird and have a cup of tea and cake.