Farewell Mr Percival
20th July 2016
This week has seen a series of events and visitors paying their respects and saying goodbye to Mr Percival, who leaves us today after 19 years as our Head Teacher.
Unbeknownst to Mr Percival, secret practices have been underway with every child in the school learning a series of his favourite Beatles songs. He’s been banned from Monday assemblies for weeks and taken on random errands and unexpectedly called into meetings – all aimed at keeping him away from his surprise farewell arrangements.
On Monday morning he was called to the field to find the whole school waiting for him under gazebos decorated with bunting – each piece with a personal message from one of the children in the school. He was led - somewhat surprised - to a seat whilst Year 5 and 6 along with Mrs Yardley-Barnes led the whole school in singing the songs we had been practicing - ‘Blackbird’, ‘With a Little Help from my Friends’ and ‘Love, Love Love’.
After that, delegations from every class came to him with gifts and messages – poems, pictures, songs, books and even bunting celebrating his beloved Burnley FC! There were also presents – everything he needs to take up watercolour painting, a hobby laid down in the past which he plans to take up again in retirement. To round off the celebrations, the School Council invited him to share lunch with them.
Tuesday saw Mr Percival invited to the bowling with the Year 6s and then afterwards to a classroom party with Year 2.
Following all that, you can forgive Mr Percival for believing that the goodbyes were over so he was clearly moved when he walked into his last ever assembly today to a standing ovation from the entire school along with clapping and loud cheers. Next, the recorder group and choir had practiced their favourite pieces for him and William played some wonderful flute solos – the themes from Star Wars and Harry Potter!
Poignantly for many, Mr Percival read Frog and Toad for the last time to us all – the kite flying story, especially for the Year 6 children, reminding them to never give up trying and they will achieve their dreams.
He had a gift for us too – a beautiful potted lavender bearing the words ‘Beauty, Inspire, Nourish, Grow’ and a bird feeding station to bring life and more nature to our school. It was a wonderful final send off for a brilliant, caring and supportive Head Teacher. He will be greatly missed and we wish him every happiness and joy in his retirement.