The Washington City Schools Board of Education recognized 10 individuals at a recent meeting who retired this year. The group combined accounts for over 200 years of work for the district.
The regularly monthly board meeting resumed at 7 p.m. following the hiring of the new superintendent, Thomas Bailey. After approving the minutes from previous meetings, interim superintendent Robert Hamm addressed the crowd and named the 10 individuals who would be retiring from the district at the end of the school year, if they had not already retired.
The individuals honored were: Billy Penwell, retiring head custodian at Belle Aire Intermediate School after serving the district for 31 years; Carolyn Puckett, retiring district psychologist after serving the district for 31 years; John Enochs, retiring intervention specialist at Belle Aire Intermediate School after serving the district for 30 years; Bonnie Taylor, retiring secretary to the district treasurer after serving the district for 30 years; Gayle Robinson, retiring secretary at Washington Middle School after serving the district for 23 years; Pam Anders, retiring secretary at Cherry Hill Primary School after serving the district for 20 years; Janet Smith, retiring educational aide at Washington Middle School after serving the district for 20 years; Gary Shupe, retiring food service director after serving the district for 15 years; Andrew Lucas, retiring head cook at Washington High School after serving the district for 14 years; and James Meyer, retiring custodian at Washington High School after serving the district for seven years.
Not all honorees were in attendance but those who were took a moment to thank the board and explain to the crowd how they felt to retire from the district after the many years of service. Several were in tears as they spoke and others told the crowd they were looking forward to retirement.
“All of these people have done a great job for us in the district, and a lot of those folks I actually worked with them, hand in hand, in the district before I went to Laural Oaks to teach,” BOE president Ken Upthegrove said. “So it is really neat to see them be able to retire. I retired and it is a great thing. I would like to tell them to have a great time, I wish them good luck with whatever they choose to do in their retirement and have fun.”
The board also recognized several district employees who were honored with awards recently. Jeri Sword, Mitch Augenstein and Upthegrove all received the Hopewell Exceptional Achievement Award.
“The recipients were cited for service they had provided this last school year to ensure students with disabilities achieve personal, social and academic goals of the highest standards,” Hamm said. “This award is a unique recognition since it is granted to a limited number of individuals from throughout the five county area that comprise region 14.”
Additionally, Amanda Runk was also recognized for being named an Outstanding teacher by Be E3Smart program of Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives.
Finally, the board approved the candidates for graduation of the Washington High School Class of 2017, which is comprised of 134 students.
The next monthly board meeting will be Monday, June 26 at 7 p.m.
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy