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Classes reunite for anniversary
Former art teacher Ron Freeborn and history teacher Jane Card with an old uniform at the Didcot Girls School 80th anniversary celebrations
AS DIDCOT Girls’ School looks forward to a new future as an academy, former staff and pupils gathered to look back at its 80-year history.
The school in Manor Crescent expects to become an academy in time for the start of the new academic year in September.
A celebration at the school in Manor Crescent marked the 80th anniversary of St Frideswide’s School, which went on to become the girls’ school.
To mark the event, there were photo boards featuring former staff and pupils.
And guests who gathered on Saturday afternoon enjoyed an afternoon tea and food stalls, with a bouncy castle and face painting for their children. Pupils also ran tours of the site, played jazz and gave a dancing display.
Ron Freeborn – who taught art from 1967 to 1994 – and Jane Card – who taught history from 1973 to 2007 – were among former members of staff who attended.
Ms Card, 64, from Harwell, said: “I arrived at the school in 1973 and around that time St Frideswide’s and Didcot Girls’ Grammar School amalgamated to become a comprehensive school.
“Both St Frideswide’s and the grammar school were very successful schools so it was a strong foundation for the comprehensive school.
“Everyone who attended on Saturday thought it was a great idea to celebrate the anniversary, and a lot of people met up with friends they had not seen for some time.”
The school has applied for multi-academy trust status to allow the possibility of joining in an academy structure with St Birinus School, or primary schools in the Didcot area at a future date.
Multi-academy trust status will allow it to jointly run a third state school at the town’s Great Western Park, a proposal outlined last year by Didcot Girls’ School, St Birinus School, and Abingdon and Witney College.
Headteacher Rachael Warwick said: “It is wonderful to celebrate the school’s rich history at a time when we are poised for an ambitious and exciting future as an academy.
“Preparations are well under way.
“The anniversary event was a very nostalgic occasion, with some guests who were at the school in the 1930s and 1940s.”