After teaching 31 years at Collins-Maxwell and 37 years in total, Janet Bane will retire at the end of this school year.

“I’ve been a first-grade teacher here for most of my years,” Bane said of her career in the Collins-Maxwell school district. “One year, I was a combination first and second grade teacher. Another year, I was a first grade teacher in the morning and a Title I teacher in the afternoon. I coached volleyball and basketball a few years, too.”

Bane came to Collins-Maxwell from a position in Western Iowa to be closer to her mom and siblings. “My previous job was teaching kindergarten and first grade in Exira. I taught there for four years.”

She said working in the elementary school has never allowed for a dull moment. “That’s why I love it, because every day is different,” she said. She has enjoyed most working with all the kids and the staff.

The most challenging thing for her, as a teacher, Bane said, “is having kids come back to school after being sick or not feeling well, and getting them caught up with their work.”

In her retirement, Bane plans to work with younger children at a day care. “I guess I can’t get enough of young children,” she said.

She also looks forward to going to her daughter’s sporting events, enjoying movies, walking, riding her bike, spending time with family, and going the events of her nieces and nephews.

Bane is the mother of two children, an 18-year-old daughter, who is graduating from high school this year and attending Grand View University in Des Moines to major in physical therapy; and a 21-year-old son, who works at Dee Zee in Ankeny. He graduated from Indian Hills in Ottumwa, with a major in robotics. Her husband is an assistant parts manager at George White in Ames.

Bane leaves the following advice for the next Collins-Maxwell first-grade teacher. “Work hard, have fun doing it and watch your students grow and amaze you, from the beginning of the year to the end.”