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Retirees honored and interviewed
Retirees honored and interviewed
Faith Behr
Thursday, June 27, 2019

Salt Creek District 48 said goodbye to a number of talented educators, who retire after long careers in the District. They were honored at Albright Middle School’s graduation with a small gift and sentiments from students. In alphabetical order, they are:

Gwen Armwood
Orchestra Teacher at Albright
14 years in District 48
She'll return as a contract part-time orchestra teacher.

Debbie Butman
4th Grade Teacher
20 years in District 48 
What else: Started, wrote and directed Stella's Stars Drama Club, sponsored Writer's Club and Swartz Chronicle.

Ken Calaway
8th Grade Language Arts Teacher
31 years in District 48 
What else: Sponsored student council, AMS newspaper, coached boys’ and girls’ basketball, and served a short stint as assistant principal. 

John Correll
13 years in District 48
What else: Provided co-leadership with our student leadership workshop "Learning to Lead," successfully led a building-bond referendum, curriculum improvements and enhanced professional growth.  

Scott Jackson
AMS Principal
27 years in District 48
What else: Taught industrial arts and technology for 9 years at AMS, served as the District technology director for 4 years, principal of Swartz; coached boys’ and girls’ basketball.

Cindy Madsen
5th Grade Teacher
19.5 years in District 48
What else: Sponsored Chorus Club, Drama Club and Homework Club and served as AMS basketball scorekeeper.

Linda Memmott
2nd Grade Teacher
30 years in District 48

Karen Olsen
District Nurse 
22 years in District 48

Sharon Quinlan
Student Services Administrative Assistant
21 years in District 48
Other work: Special education instructional assistant, mentored students, assisted with fundraising and chaperoned.

We interviewed retirees about what they learned and what they liked best during their career. Here are some of their responses:

What would you say is the most important thing you’ve learned?
DB: Team work! You cannot do what we teachers do without working together!
JC: The need to listen and look for the best in people.
SQ: Always be kind, and don't sweat the small stuff.
KC: Greatness is built on a deep, disciplined abiding love for others.
SJ: That every child is different. They grow and develop at different rates and times. Never give up on them because you never know when the light bulb will pop on. This is where district 48 excels.

What change in education was most beneficial for students?
JC: The focus on educating the whole child by examining what skills they need to be successful after they leave us.
KC: Change is inevitable and always affects people in a deeply personal manner. It's not so much about the change that I find interesting. It's the sharing of how one best responds to change that I find more important.
SJ: Our one-to-one computer program puts the whole world at our students’ fingertips. But, this is also a double-edged sword. Technology is also destroying some of our students who are not taught how to manage it outside of school.

As you reflect on your career, what stands out?
DB: Kids are people, too!
JC: The wonderful people I have been lucky enough to work with and how much effort they put in to help our children.
CM: The innocence and goodness of heart that each child possesses.
SQ: The many professional teachers, caring and involved parents and awesome students.
KC: A thousand days when I'm standing before my students chatting with them about literature, culture, life, and I'm on and they are engaged. I can see it in their eyes. We're laughing, crying, learning, sharing and 2,400 seconds seems like a flash and it's over. Then a few days later after the students have built upon our readings and discussions, and they have created new understanding, and they are now standing before me; they have me laughing, crying, learning, and sharing, and like a flash, it's all over. 31 years.
SJ: Watching everyone in this district open their hearts day after day and year after year to serve, support, develop and educate each and every child who walks through our doors as if they were their own. 

What is the favorite thing about your role?
DB: Working in a district that appreciates and supports teacher creativity!
SQ: Assisting those in need of assistance.
SJ: Seeing students grow and develop. At AMS, they come in as children and four years later, they graduate young men and women.  

In three words, describe District 48?
DB: Family, learning, friends.
JC: Caring, child-centered, forward-looking.
CM: Innovative, community, family.
SQ: Dedicated, connected, inclusive.
KC: Opportunity to Grow!
SJ: Family, Caring, and dedicated.