Staff at the primary school where murdered Sabina Nessa worked are “consumed with grief” but are “putting on a brave face” to support the pupils she taught.
Sabina, 28, was found stabbed to death near the OneSpace community centre in Kidbrooke, south-east London, last Saturday.
Police believe she was attacked at random on her way to the pub to meet a pal and her body dumped in a meadow, where she lay undiscovered for almost 24 hours.
Teachers at Rushey Green Primary School in Catford where she worked have been offered help from educational psychologists and headteacher Lisa Williams has spoken to classes.
She had taught first-year children at the school, which has 600 pupils and about 70 staff.
One teacher, who did not wish to be named, told the South London Press: “No one and nothing can prepare you for this – the first anyone knew was when we arrived at school on Monday morning.
“It is awful enough when someone dies.
“This is so much worse. It is impossible to even comprehend – that she suffered in the most violent way. We were sitting beside her on Friday – then this.
“The Year Two pupils, who she had last year in Year One, will be the most upset – and their parents.
“Everyone is supporting each other.
“But it is hard for teachers to reassure children who are nervous about being at school for the first time – while they are themselves putting on a brave face while consumed with grief themselves.”
More than 500 people attended a vigil last night at Pegler Square, not far from where a wanted suspect was captured on CCTV.
Her heartbroken sister Jebina broke down in tears as she paid tribute to Sabina, while mourners left flowers and lit candles in her memory.
Addressing the crowds, Jebina said: “I just want to say thank you to everyone who came today to show support for my sister.
“We have lost an amazing, caring, beautiful sister, who left this world far too early.
“Words cannot describe how we are feeling, this feels like we are stuck in a bad dream and can’t get out of it – our world is shattered, we are simply lost for words.
“No family should go through what we are going through.”
Detectives are urgently appealing for information about a mystery man who was captured on CCTV in Pegler Square, south east London, on the night Sabina was attacked.
Cops have also released an image, captured in the same area, of a silver car they believe the man has access to and appealed for anyone who recognised either to contact the force immediately.
Detective Chief Inspector Neil John said: “We are now a week on from Sabina’s murder and while we have made good progress with our investigation we must keep this appeal for information going and encourage anyone who has any information to come forward.”
Anyone with information is urged to call the Met Police’s incident room on 0208 721 4266 or Crimestoppers completely anonymously on 0800 555 111.
A 38-year-old man arrested on suspicion of murdering Sabina has been released under investigation.
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