2017-06-16 / Letters

Retiring teacher says thank you

As I sit in my classroom for my last day before I retire as a teacher at Simi Valley High School, it’s hard not to reflect on my 11 years of teaching. In particular, while my fellow teachers and administrators have all been thanking me for my service, I think I should be thanking them.

In 2003, I switched my career as a writer/consultant and later as an executive in the high-tech industry in order to have a less stressful and travel-free environment as a teacher.

What I discovered was a new kind of wealth that goes way beyond money. Quite simply, there is a hard-to-imagine, magical joy and satisfaction in helping young students discover the world they are going to inhabit. You particularly see and feel it during high school graduations as the buzz of excitement sweeps over teachers, administrators, school officials, parents and the students as they transition to their next steps in life.

It is a sense of accomplishment that transcends the pay, which turns out to not be as bad as we’re told, especially when you factor in the state pension. It’s a great and honorable profession for anyone to consider.

So thank you, Simi Valley High School and its many administrators, counselors, staff, fellow teachers and students, for making my experience a memorable and enriching one that I will never forget.

Also thank you to the Simi Valley Unified School District for giving us great support. It has truly been a life-enriching experience.

Stephen Caswell
Simi Valley

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