Devoted teacher brought creativity into the classroom
Janice Biondini served as deputy head at St Mark’s Primary School in Upper Holloway
19 October, 2018 — By Helen Chapman
Janice Biondini with her daughter, Amy
A FORMER teacher who was known for her outgoing personality and commitment to her pupils has died shortly before her 70th birthday.
Janice Biondini served as a deputy headteacher at St Mark’s Primary School, in Upper Holloway, during a career working across north London’s education system,
She had also taught at a host of schools in neighbouring Camden, including Fleet and Richard Cobden, and had headteacher roles at Holy Trinity School, in Chalk Farm, and St George the Martyr Primary, Holborn, before retiring in 2001.
Her daughter, Amy Biondini, 38, said: “She touched so many lives. People she taught 30 or 40 years ago still remember her. She was a great joy, so vibrant and outgoing, smiley and laughing and just a genuinely nice person. She always said ‘hi’ and would always listen.”
Helen Tanner, who first met Janice while teaching at Richard Cobden Primary School in 1971, said: “Janice was a born teacher, it was all she ever wanted as a career, even as a young child, and she took on every opportunity to engage in teaching experiences because she was so committed.
“She inspired her pupils in the primary stage of their education, and lately if she happened to bump into any of her pupils in the street, they were delighted to meet her again.”
After her retirement in 2001, Janice volunteered at a community centre near her home helping children make cards. She would encourage them to create something from their imagination rather than telling them what to do – a testament to her creative teaching style.
She travelled to Germany, France, Italy, Russia and Estonia with friends and family, where she would visit galleries, museums, churches and try out the local cuisine.
But when at home, she loved to go out on walks with her dogs, Bertie and Barnaby, and would talk to everyone she met, becoming friends with other dog walkers. Having lived in her Tollington Park flat for 36 years, Janice knew everyone and no trip out was a short one.
She was born in the Whittington Hospital in 1948 and died at the same hospital, five days before her 70th birthday. Her funeral took place on Tuesday at Islington Crematorium.
She leaves behind her brother Stephen, 66, her sister Maria, 68, and nieces and nephews Jason, Wendy, Melanie, Tara and Paul.