When the calendar turns to June, hundreds of years of experience in the Marshalltown Community School District will be retiring.
To honor the longtime teachers and staff, the district and the Marshalltown Education Association hosted the annual retirement tea Wednesday at Dejardin Hall at Iowa Valley Continuing Education.
"You've given your lives to our kids," School Board President Kay Beach told the retiring staff.
T-R PHOTO BY ANDREW POTTER
Retiring Marshalltown teachers Linda Stephens, left, and Vicki McKibbin talk prior to the teacher retirement tea recognition Wednesday at Dejardin Hall at Iowa Valley Continuing Education.
Linda Stephens was one of the retirees being honored and the Miller Middle School teacher said it's a bittersweet feeling to see her career come to an end.
"It's exciting and it's sad a little," she said. "I have wonderful memories of all the students."
Stephens was happy she was able to make an impact on the lives of young students.
"It's an honorable profession," she said. "You do touch the future."
Longtime school secretary Kathy Elsberry was among the many support staff retirees honored at the event. Elsberry said she cherished the many friendships she has made in the district.
"They mean the most to me," she said.
Marshalltown Superintendent Marvin Wade said the event served as a just a token of appreciation to the valued staff.
"I don't think people know how much they are appreciated," Wade said.
Ellen Harbaugh received the Friend of Education award at the event for her work in the community as part of the Books and Beasties program that provides books and stuffed animals to children. Through the years the program has provided 46,000 books to children in the community.
"Ellen is a champion for literacy," said Sue Cahill, speaking on behalf of the MEA.
The recipients of the MEA scholarships this year were Marshalltown High School seniors Hannah Thomae and Riley Willman. The last day of students at school in Marshalltown for this school year is May 31.