Sue Smith, 65, said it feels ‘strange’ and ‘emotional’ to leave the Vale School, in Vale Avenue, Worthing, but ‘the time feels right and it is time to be a grandma’.
She said: “I will miss everyone and I have loved it here – it has been wonderful.
“I value all the children and I am grateful for all the great times over the years and to everyone I have met and worked with.”
The long-serving teacher, who moved to Worthing in 1984 and began her career working as a supply teacher, was presented with a Sussex bravery award in 2011 after confronting two suspected armed men who had entered the school grounds in 2010.
“I tried to escort one of the men out to get away from the children – the children were my priority,” she said.
Sue’s brave actions helped police catch the two robbers who hid in the school.
Headteacher, Martin Garratt, said Sue’s departure leaves a ‘massive hole and loss’.
He added: “Sue has helped the school become as successful as it is and she has been a huge support to children and staff.”
The first and middle school is putting on a leaving assembly for Sue tomorrow, on what will be her last day.
Sarah Blomfield, personal assistant to the headteacher, said Sue has been ‘a massive part of the school and will be greatly missed by everyone’.
The 65-year-old is starting her retirement in New Zealand, where she will visit her daugher and two grandsons in January.
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