A York school has paid tribute to the ‘outstanding’ efforts of three staff who have worked there for a combined total of nearly nine decades.
Marie Popely, Julie Appleton and Sylvia Jefferson have retired from Copmanthorpe Primary School after putting in 88 years there between them.
Sylvia Jefferson started working in the school kitchen in 1980, where she continued for 36 years.
For the last six years, she has remained on the cleaning team. Sylvia has had two daughters Leslie and Linda and three grandchildren Chloe, James and Jack go through Copmanthorpe School.
Marie Popely and Julie Appleton started working at Copmanthorpe in 1999. Both have worked in the kitchen, as midday supervisors and cleaners.
Julie plans to remain as a midday supervisor for a couple more years, as her granddaughter Evie, is still at the school.
Julie’s children Philip and Christopher both attended Copmanthorpe School, as well as her granddaughter Evie, who will be starting Year 4 in September. Marie has had three children through Copmanthorpe School, Amanda, Mark and Christopher.
They all started working at Copmanthorpe through recommendations from friends and have never left. Julie said that she has “loved being part of a team”.
Marie agreed that they “couldn’t have worked with nicer people”. And Sylvia said: “If it wasn’t for everyone being so nice, we wouldn’t have been here so long.”
Mrs Rogers, who started as headteacher of Copmanthorpe School in September 2015, said “As soon as I met Julie, Marie and Sylvia, I knew that the school was in safe hands.
“I knew that they loved the school as much as I did and would do anything to ensure its success. The pride they take in their work is astounding and helps to make Copmanthorpe School a great school.
“They all worked throughout the pandemic and Julie worked many additional hours to ensure the safety of the children and the staff.
“During times of staff shortages, Julie and Marie have started work at 6.30am to make sure the school is ready for the children – they really are an amazing team and we will really miss them.”
Julie, Marie and Sylvia are employed at Copmanthorpe School through the cleaning contractor Betterclean.
They are looking forward to being able to spend more time with their grandchildren as well as other pursuits and interests such as gardening.