How many years have you been teaching?
I have taught for 34 years, all at North Polk
What positions have you held at North Polk and what is your current job that you will retire from?
I have taught at all four buildings in our district. When I first started, I taught elementary PE at Central and West. After 17 years doing that, I taught at Central and the middle school. Now I am just at the high school, teaching PE and health. I also have coached some junior high sports and I was the head volleyball coach from 1988-2010.
Where were you raised and what did you love about your upbringing and schools you attended?
I was raised on a dairy farm by Waverly. You learn a lot about work ethic when you are raised on a farm! I loved the farm and some of my fondest childhood memories are from that farm
I grew up in a family of seven, where you learn to share and work together. I still remain very close with all of my siblings.
Why did you go into teaching/education? Did someone influence you? If you had chosen another career, what might that have been?
I graduated from Waverly-Shell Rock High School in 1979. I had some great coaches and teachers there who very strongly influenced my decision to go into teaching and coaching. If I had not gone into teaching, I might have gone on to PT school or maybe something else involving children.
What have you loved most about your time at North Polk Schools?
I have always loved the families at NP. When I first started, I taught at both elementary buildings, so I basically knew every family in the school district. It was great getting to know SO MANY people in our district. Now I really only know the high school kids and the children of former students. I really enjoy seeing former students and teaching their children. Its great to see these kids be great parents!
I really enjoyed coaching here and the relationships that you make with student-athletes. I still keep in touch with many of them.
What was the biggest challenge you faced over the years?
Not really sure what the biggest challenge would have been, but when I was teaching full time and coaching volleyball, I spent a lot of time at school and not much time with my family. My husband was awesome at taking care of our three children! Teaching is a challenge EVERY minute of every day. The kids really make you stay on top of your game.
Do you have any advice for those thinking about this profession or just starting out in the profession?
My advice to future PE and health teachers is that physical education is just so important right now to the students in our school district. Technology and changes in our work force and the increase of fast food availability have not really been great for the health of our kids! We just really need to keep teaching them about how important physical activity and nutrition are. Physical education programs really need to be fitness-based and not focused around sports.
Who are the family members you will now enjoy spending more time with?
My husband and I have a few trips planned for the fall, so I am really looking forward to that. Plus, I will have my first grandchild around April 21, and we are really excited about that. And I would love to spend time with all three of my wonderful adult children.
Is there anything else you’d like to mention?
I have worked with some outstanding people at North Polk. Our schools are loaded with great teachers! Just want to thank my former co-workers and the parents in our community for their support.