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Headteacher overwhelmed by support from the community

“Driffield is a very special place and we can’t thank the community enough for all their support”.

These were the words of Driffield Northfield Infant School headteacher Sam Woolhouse as she continues work to prepare the school to welcome back its pupils after Easter following a devastating break-in which caused tens of thousands of pounds of damage.

Four boys aged 13 or under were detained following the break-in and vandalism at the school on Southfield Close which happened on Sunday 26th March.

The school was forced to close to all pupils last week while work to repair the damage and clear up the devastation took place.

As soon as the heart-breaking news broke, the community was quick to rally and offered its support to the school and its staff.

Last week, a number of activities were organised for the children of Northfield and their families.

From craft sessions, free swimming at Driffield Leisure Centre, bouncy castles and Maypole dancing, the children had a host of activities to help put a smile back on their faces after the disappointment of missing out on the last week of the Spring term and the Easter activities that had been organised for them.

A Go Fund Me page was launched and schools and pre-school settings in the town held special events and fundraising to help Northfield.

Meanwhile gifts of flowers, biscuits and chocolates flooded in for the staff as they spent last week preparing their classrooms to welcome back the children.

Sam told the Wolds Weekly that the support the school has received has been unbelievable.

She said: “Driffield is a very special place and we can’t thank the community enough for all their support.

“It has blown me away and I don’t think you’d get that level of support in many other places.

“The whole community has come together to offer support.

“I would like to thank all the staff who have been amazing and are working incredibly hard to get our school ready for the pupils returning after Easter and they have been a great support to me.

“The local authority has been amazing and thanks to Deborah Myers and Emma Hobbs, who have arranged for the contractors to come in and clean up.

“I am really grateful to the schools in Driffield and pre-school settings who have shown their support. We are like one big family.

“The number of messages of support we have received has been amazing and I can only apologise that I haven’t been able to reply to everybody but their support is so appreciated.

“There were so many lovely events organised last week for the children and to everyone who has given up their time to help make these happen, I thank you.

“We are very grateful for any fundraising that is taking place. The local authority is supporting us with getting everything replaced through the insurance, but any additional funding will help to make a huge difference to the children with extra resources and we would also like to have a special event for the children to celebrate the community of Driffield so that the children understand how much everybody has supported them.”

Sam said the focus for everyone in the school now is to get the classrooms back to normal ready for the children when they return after the Easter holidays.

“I don’t want the children to worry about anything,” she said.

“We are all focused now on the Monday after the Easter holidays and the classrooms will all be ready to welcome the children back then and they won’t know anything different.

“Any events and trips that the children have missed this week, we will make sure they still get them, and we will give them a really lovely time.”

Gemma Walker from the Friends of Driffield Northfield Infant School said: “We’ve felt really sad and angry about it. I have two children at the school, one in Year 1 and one in Year 2, and they’ve really missed being at school.

“They love school and they’ve missed their friends, but we’ve been able to take part in some of the activities that have been provided for Northfield families and so they have enjoyed those.

“We are just looking forward to getting back to school.”

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