Three much-loved J-DHS faculty members are wrapping up their final year in the J-D school district prior to their retirement. They would like to comment on their time at J-D, and Principal Gasparini shares his kind words about each of the teachers.
Mrs. Pamela Breck, Attendance Office
Mrs. Pamela Breck has been working in the J-D school district for 33 years. In her current position at the high school, she helps students with working papers, manages attendance for every J-D class, and takes parent phone calls about their child’s attendance. “I started working at Jamesville Elementary School in the fall of 1988 as an aide in the kindergarten classroom for 2 years, before I moved into the library aide position, where I worked for 20 years. I was then asked back in the summer of 2010 if I would take the attendance clerk position here at the high school, where I have worked for the past 11 years. What I will miss most about this job is the day-to-day contact with students, their families, faculty and staff, and opening the door when the buzzer rings. The impact that the school district has had on me was the opportunity to work with and know so many wonderful people throughout all my years in the district. I wish the entire student body ‘good luck’ today and throughout their high school career and beyond.”
Principal Gasparini recognizes the time and energy Mrs. Breck has put into her everyday work at J-D. “Mrs. Breck is very hardworking, conscientious, and detail-oriented. The attendance clerk position is very difficult and Mrs. Breck did an excellent job in the role.”
Mr. Charles May, Science
Mr. Charlie May has been a science teacher at J-D since 1989. He has inspired countless students to pursue careers in science, and students talk fondly of his class. Mr. May has loved his time at J-D as much as his students have loved him. “Well I have to say that my time here at JDHS has flown by. It seems as though only yesterday I was a brand new teacher here at the high school back in the ‘80s, and now I am a few days away from being retired. When we started, Mr. Keenan and I were the only two teachers in their twenties at the high school, and it was a very veteran staff back then. One of the things that stands out most is how many former students and players I have taught and coached have become teachers and coaches themselves. Mr. Goldberg (tennis) and Alex Way (baseball) are a couple working here at J-DHS. People say time flies as you get older. When you are ten, one year is 1/10 of your life, and as an old guy, a year is now just 1/55 of my life. Einstein might be onto something with that relativity thing! I think one of the most important things a kid should learn here at J-D is best summed up by Mrs. B’s chemistry bumper sticker… Be NiCe!”
According to Principal Gasparini, “Mr. May is among the smartest people I know. He is an excellent classroom teacher who has led his students to excellent Regents results over the years. I particularly appreciated his work to develop a heterogeneously mixed Earth science program.”
Mr. Leo Brown, Social Studies
Mr. Leo Brown is a favorite of many students. He is a social studies teacher who has been working at J-D for 14 years. He goes above and beyond for his students, and he has taught thousands of students over the years about everything from Ancient Egypt to the American Civil War. “To the Jamesville-DeWitt community, I want to say ‘thank you’ to everybody associated with Jamesville-DeWitt for the best 14 years of my working life. Mr. Gasparini is wrong when he says that J-DHS is the best high school in the nation. J-DHS is the best high school in the world! No question. The students make it so. I may be a bit biased considering that Mrs. Brown and our three children are products of J-D. The staff here is also the very best–caring, committed, and learned. I became a better person teaching here at J-DHS and by teaching global studies in particular. To the students at J-D–be kind to each other, understand that the school years are both exciting and difficult for everyone. Be proud of your association with J-D. You made it the best high school in the world. Hopefully, I will see many of you next year if I am able to substitute.”
Principal Gasparini agrees about Mr. Brown’s impact. “Mr. Brown has the best perspective on teaching. He loves his subject area and brings life experience in different professions to his work in the classroom. Students truly appreciate his friendly, upbeat manner.”
“I will miss all of them very much,” says Gasparini.