Ascot Community School says goodbye to teacher after 29 years

Ascot Community School teacher Myra Doherty says goodbye to the school after teaching there for 29 years.
Joanna Griffiths/Fairfax NZ

Ascot Community School teacher Myra Doherty says goodbye to the school after teaching there for 29 years.

After 29 years of service Myra Doherty has closed her classroom door at Ascot Community School for the last time.

The primary school teacher finished up at the school on Thursday .

So much had changed in the school during her 29 years, Doherty said.

There was no internet and no photocopier when she first started.

Instead they had to use duplicating machines.

"We used methylated spirits and had to turn it by hand."

"Everything used to smell like methylated spirits."

And all educational films came on reels and slides, "It sounds almost prehistoric now."

"Now we just use the interactive whiteboard."

Since her time at the school she had taught entire families; the mother and then all her children. 

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Her favourite time of year was always the beginning

​"Seeing a pupil on their first day at school, new uniform, bags and fresh faces."

In 29 years, she never met a child she didn't like.

"Some had moments that I didn't appreciate, but everyone had something I loved about them."

She had wanted to be a teacher since she was a child.

"I had a fantastic standard three teacher, I thought 'that's what I want to do'."

She enrolled in a teachers' college when she was 17 and never looked back.

"It is such a rewarding profession. These children learn something new every day, and I helped them do that."

When she first started at college she was told she was too quietly spoken to be a teacher."

"It is now my greatest advantage, you don't have to yell at children to let them know they have done something wrong."

"I get down to their level and they know."

Her resignation came after her partner bought a bus 16 months ago.

The pair had been doing it up and now they had free time they planned to pack up and drive around New Zealand. 

The idea of resigning was a bit daunting at first, she had been teaching in a classroom since 1980.

"I will miss the kids dearly, but it is my chance to chase the sun."

It was a difficult goodbye, she said.

Many of her past pupils said their farewell through sobs and tears.

"I was so surprised, so many nice things were said, it was very overwhelming."

She promised to send postcards while on the road. 

 - Stuff

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