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Kirkleatham Hall School

"Unlocking Potential"

Judy Butchart

My name is Judy Butchart, and although my family is Welsh I was born and brought up in Luton. After I left school I trained as a primary school teacher in Reading which is where I met my husband, Ian, who is originally from Sunderland. After university we worked and lived in London for a couple of years before we moved back up to the North East, where we’ve been ever since.


At first we lived near Durham where we had our first two children, Tom and Nick and then later moved to Newcastle where we had two more boys, Richard and Dan.


As you can imagine it was very noisy and untidy in our house with four little boys who were very close in age!


I was very lucky as I was able to stay at home with the boys while they were little. However I helped out most days at the local playgroup, as I could take the younger boys with me, whilst Tom and Nick were at school. Soon after this I also started helping out at the boys school and it was not surprising that once the youngest started Nursery I was persuaded to start teaching again!


My first job after I had gone back to work was in a special school in Newcastle, later I moved back to work in a primary school as a community teacher.


Three years later Ian got a job at Teesside Uni and so the whole family moved down to Eaglescliffe.  I worked briefly in Stockton and then became the Deputy Head at Caldicotes Primary on Brambles Farm Estate. Two years after this I became the Head Teacher at Dormanstown Primary School, here in Redcar, which I loved and where I stayed until I retired!


Dormanstown, as some of you will know, has five assessment classes alongside its mainstream classes and so I became very involved in the work to assess the needs of our youngsters, many of whom later came to Kirkleatham.  I worked closely with Gill Naylor and got to know many of the staff here too.


After I retired from Dormanstown I became involved with training local trainee teachers and at the same time was asked by Gill to become a governor here.


Now I am fully retired and I enjoy travelling, the theatre, going out for meals and reading (we have thousands of books!).  I try to garden but I’m not very green fingered, although I can grow decent onions! I used to have a season ticket for Sunderland but no longer go although I still follow their progress. I support Wales at rugby!


We are lucky that two of our sons still live very near us. Tom runs a record shop in Stockton and Dan works for EE.  We see them and their partners often.


The other two live in Staffordshire and Switzerland which are both good places to visit.  Nick works for a large betting company in Stoke on Trent. He and Karen have a year old, very large dog called Molly.  She is an Airedale and very cute! We go down from time to time to dog sit!


Our first grand-daughter, Maeve, has just been born, she is gorgeous!  Richard and Marie live in Basel in Switzerland so I dare say this means we will be going as often as possible to visit Maeve (and Richard and Marie if course!)