The joys of staying put

How refreshing to read about Walker technology college ("Is this the happiest staffroom in Britain?", TES, December 23), a school that is proud of staff working in the school for most or all of their professional careers.

Having worked in one school for 35 of my 36 years in teaching - in fact I was also a pupil at the school for seven years - there were times when I was made to feel embarrassed about staying in one school for so long. The implication was that I lacked career ambition. Candidates with experience of only one school were often rejected when they applied for vacancies.

Like many staff at Walker college, my school provided me with a wonderful career with the opportunity to experience many different roles, culminating in a lengthy spell as deputy headteacher until my retirement at the end of August 2005.

To work with and help people from the local community grow from childhood into adult life, and then help to educate their children has been a privilege.

Mel Jeffries Retired deputy headteacher Chipping Sodbury School 79 Somerset Avenue Yate South Gloucestershire

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