A retired headteacher from Romsey has been honoured by the University of Winchester.

Jo Cottrell, formerly the executive headteacher of Halterworth, Wellow and Awbridge Primary Schools, was recognised for her dedication and achievements in education.

Jo enjoyed 35 years in education, working across the country. Her 19 years at Halterworth was preceded with a headship in Dorset and time working for the Department of Education building partnerships of schools across the country under the Blair government.

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Daily Echo: Jo Cottrell at Winchester Cathedral

Her mission was to ensure that every child would have the chance to learn an instrument, represent their school and perform on a stage. 

As an experienced headteacher, Jo supported new heads and schools that were experiencing periods of challenge. She always understood that no school was perfect and that in every school there are many staff who go above and beyond to make a difference for children.

Jo said: “It has been a wonderful career. I have had the honour and privilege to work with so many talented school staff and most importantly, the children and families especially in the Romsey area. Working with children means that no one day is the same. I get a great deal of joy meeting past pupils and hearing about their lives and opportunities.”

At its latest Ofsted inspection in October, Halterworth Primary School was rated as good.

The report said: "Pupils are excited to attend this school each day.

"They are encouraged to be curious and creative, expressing their learning in different ways.

"Pupils know that their teachers expect a lot from them and they are keen to rise to this challenge.

"They achieve especially well in core subjects and those which are prioritised in the school’s curriculum.

"Pupils work hard in lessons, and learning is rarely disrupted by poor behaviour.

"The well-being of pupils is a top priority at this school. Pupils feel safe and well supported.

"They appreciate opportunities to talk with adults in school if they need to, sometimes while walking the school dog, Paddy."