Tributes paid as 'legendary' Darlington teacher retires

The Advertiser Series: STANDING DOWN: Teacher Dave Tucker STANDING DOWN: Teacher Dave Tucker

A SENIOR teacher considered a legend by staff and pupils past and present is to retire after dedicating his life to one of the fastest improving schools in the region.

Assistant headteacher Dave Tucker hangs up his achievement and pastoral care duties at the end of term as Darlington School of Mathematics and Science celebrates its 50th anniversary.

Mr Tucker, of Hurworth, joined in 1984, 20 years after the school opened as the 1,300-pupil Branksome Comprehensive School.

Born in Glasgow, he moved to the region as a child when his father was appointed farm manager at Arncliffe Estate, near Stokesley.

He secured a scholarship at Yarm Grammar School and worked as a pigman eventually being promoted to manager of one of the largest herds in the country.

“But I always wanted to be a teacher,” he recalled. “I went to Northumberland College in Ponteland and worked at Longfield, Central and Eastbourne schools in Darlington, as well as Sedgefield.”

Joining the staff at Branksome, which became DSMS in 2011, he has worked under five headteachers.

He said: “I have always felt part of the school and the decision-making process.

“The school is really going places, anyone can see and the staff are excellent as they really care about the students.

“I am going to really miss it. It has been part of my life for the past 30 years and I will miss the staff, the parents and the students.”

Headteacher Calvin Kipling said: “Mention Mr Tucker’s name in any company and the reply you hear the most is ‘legend’.

“He remains as passionate about the school and its pupils today as he was decades ago when he started and his unbridled enthusiasm is an inspiration to us all.”

Mr Tucker will celebrate the school’s golden milestone on July 17 when DSMS will stage a celebratory event for current and past staff and pupils.

The event will also mark the official opening of the new state of the art sports hall - an honour Mr Tucker has been nominated to perform.

The £700,000 sports hall has been built using the latest green technology and uses a special fabric stretched over a steel frame that allows natural light to enter the building without the need for lights.

The event starts at 2.30pm and finishes at 4pm. For more information contact the school on 01325-351377 or visit dsms.org

Comments (8)

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2:44am Fri 4 Jul 14

pandorica says...

Enjoy your retirement Mr Tucker. You taught me all them years ago. Great man and indeed a legend.
Enjoy your retirement Mr Tucker. You taught me all them years ago. Great man and indeed a legend. pandorica
  • Score: 7

6:14am Fri 4 Jul 14

DP20 says...

Well deserved retirement enjoy. Best teacher ever a true legend, all the best
Well deserved retirement enjoy. Best teacher ever a true legend, all the best DP20
  • Score: 9

8:58am Fri 4 Jul 14

DaveHodge1 says...

Dave Tucker was a legend of a teacher. Top Man! I hope he has a long and happy retirement and manages to pick out a few winners at York now he has more time on his hands!!

Dave Hodge
Dave Tucker was a legend of a teacher. Top Man! I hope he has a long and happy retirement and manages to pick out a few winners at York now he has more time on his hands!! Dave Hodge DaveHodge1
  • Score: 8

12:28pm Fri 4 Jul 14

kalyle21 says...

He was a lovely man.

Always positive comments when I talk about my Branksome experience. And a fab volleyball player.
He was a lovely man. Always positive comments when I talk about my Branksome experience. And a fab volleyball player. kalyle21
  • Score: 7

12:48pm Fri 4 Jul 14

Asdf123 says...

He made my time at school memorable. A very approachable, caring, always there to listen to you. A great asset to Branksome for such a long time and will be sorely missed, I know as after twenty years of leaving ive never forgotten you Sir.

All the best, see you the 17th legend.

Craig Pollock
He made my time at school memorable. A very approachable, caring, always there to listen to you. A great asset to Branksome for such a long time and will be sorely missed, I know as after twenty years of leaving ive never forgotten you Sir. All the best, see you the 17th legend. Craig Pollock Asdf123
  • Score: 8

1:07pm Fri 4 Jul 14

traciesm says...

Best teacher ever u could always talk to him about anything he had everyones respect very friendly and approachable and will never be forgotten good luck in your retirement x
Best teacher ever u could always talk to him about anything he had everyones respect very friendly and approachable and will never be forgotten good luck in your retirement x traciesm
  • Score: 6

4:54pm Fri 4 Jul 14

Dave luck says...

Hope you have a fantastic retirement Mr Tucker you've earned it lol.... good luck in everything you do..... Top Man
Hope you have a fantastic retirement Mr Tucker you've earned it lol.... good luck in everything you do..... Top Man Dave luck
  • Score: 4

5:00pm Fri 4 Jul 14

chefglen75 says...

Proper old school teacher,you knew where you were with him,you could have a laugh with him and because he had the respect of the pupils you didn't cross the line and take the ****
He got me games in the football team because id like to think he thought I was a decent keeper which I have never forgotten.
Have a long happy retirement,you've deserved it.Also enjoy your party later this month.
All the best...
Proper old school teacher,you knew where you were with him,you could have a laugh with him and because he had the respect of the pupils you didn't cross the line and take the **** He got me games in the football team because id like to think he thought I was a decent keeper which I have never forgotten. Have a long happy retirement,you've deserved it.Also enjoy your party later this month. All the best... chefglen75
  • Score: 4
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