Upper school cancer victim was ‘amazing’

A TEACHER has paid a moving tribute to an “amazing” Great Cornard Upper School colleague who inspired hundreds of pupils.

Jan Wait, a learning mentor for Armstrong House at the school, died on Wednesday after fighting cancer for several years. She was 53.

Assistant headteacher Gail Forster had worked very closely with Mrs Wait, who lived in Great Cornard, since she started at the school in 2008 and spoke of her admiration for her.

“She was an amazing woman and a wonderful friend,” said Mrs Forster. “She supported the students and was there whenever they needed to talk something through.”

Mrs Forster estimates that Mrs Wait, whose sons Tom and Josh are studying A-levels in Colchester and GCSEs at Great Cornard Upper School respectively, inspired more than 300 pupils in her time at the school, firstly as a behaviour support manager and then in her most recent role.

“Jan reflected all the values she taught and was just incredible in what she demonstrated with her courage and determination,” said Mrs Forster.

“She had so many very good friends and a really wonderful family network – her family was her priority but we always got so much from her at the school.

“She will always be in our hearts, and our thoughts are with her family.”

Mrs Wait leaves her two sons and a sister, Judith Fardell, who is headteacher at Wells Hall Primary School.