Posted on: Tuesday 20 September 2022
Two members of staff are celebrating 30 years working at the same school.
Senior school support officer Judith Joy joined Llanyrafon Primary School, in Cwmbran, in September 1992, and support officer Gwyneth Baldwin started work there in January 1993.
When they first joined, the school had 283 pupils, seven teaching staff and two nursery nurses. It now has 406 pupils, 16 teaching staff and 16 teaching assistants.
Judith, who lives in Llantarnam, said: "We've worked in the same office all that time but we've always got on and we've never had a crossword.
"Sometimes parents can't tell us apart on the phone and we've given up trying to correct them!
"We've seen huge changes since we first started. Schools have become 24/7, 52-weeks a year organisations.
"The best part of the job is that is never boring and two days are never the same."
Colleagues marked Judith's 30th anniversary earlier this month with balloons and banners.
Judith, who is planning to retire at the end of March next year, added: "The school has been like my family and I have made wonderful friends among the staff and parents over the years.
"It's a very special thing to watch so many children grow up and be a small part of their lives."
Gwyneth, who lives in Llanyravon and is a former pupil, said: "I applied for Jude's job but I'm glad she got it, even though I still tease her about it today!
"When I got my job, it was the start of a wonderful relationship and between us we can sort out any problem.
"Jude has become more than a work colleague – she is a wonderful friend and has been able to join in many of my family celebrations. We greet each other every day with a hug and we hug to say goodbye at the end of the day."
Headteacher Eve Rowlands added: "Jude and Gwyn provide the foundations to our school. They are organised, efficient and always greet everyone with a smile. They often know what is needed before the question is asked.
"Nothing is ever too much trouble and the wealth of knowledge they have between them is invaluable to the running of the school.
"When I joined as headteacher in September 2021, the ladies welcomed me with open arms and the support they have offered has been instrumental in my role. I feel honoured to have worked with them for this period of time and am extremely grateful for all that they do for our children, our families and our whole school community.”