Cherry Hughes is retiring at the end of May, after 21 distinguished years as Education Officer for the BSA.
As a person who stammers herself, a former Deputy Head of a large High School with experience of student counselling, and a lecturer in Further Education, Cherry was ideally placed to recognise that there was a clear lack of understanding in schools about stammering when she arrived at the BSA in 1997. Many schools didn’t identify stammering as an issue that needed to be addressed.
21 years later and the education landscape for our children and young people has changed beyond recognition. Through the education helpline and the online education resource Cherry has ensured that information about stammering is freely available not only to teachers, but also to parents wanting the best support for their children. And we are indebted to Cherry for her guidance, persistence, and wisdom over such a long period.
Part of Cherry’s work included consulting with the Department of Education and other government and voluntary agencies to make sure our voice was heard. Of course, there’s much still to be done. But Cherry’s work has set the foundation for us to build upon in the years to come.
I’m pleased to say that we won’t be losing Cherry’s knowledge and experience altogether. She assures me that she’ll be pleased to advise now and again when specific questions arise. And she’ll be a regular contributor to the website in the form of articles and comment.
I’m sure I speak on behalf of the whole stammering community when I wish her a long and happy retirement.
Tim Fell, BSA Chair