Laura Lavelle
Special to The Union

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June 16, 2014
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Pleasant Ridge School District honors retiring teachers


Dittos “feel the fit” pants were a ’70s phenomenon. The horseshoe-shaped seam on the seat and the pink or sky-blue color helped catapult this garment to the top of many pre-teen shopping lists.

Parents of school children during that era had it made. Other than a Star Wars lunchbox, tube socks or pair of waffle stompers (hiking boots), back-to-school expenses were minimal when compared to outfitting today’s teen.

In was 1976 when Apple launched its first personal computer, and Nike, Inc., was in its infancy, so students were not requesting the latest iPhone or a pair of LeBron James basketball shoes.

In the ’70s, before white boards, smart boards or computers, teachers still used chalk. Students lined up to clean the blackboards and pound dust from the erasers on the asphalt.

It was around that time that Dave Phelps began a career with the Pleasant Ridge School District. It was Dave’s first job, and he worked for 36 years teaching math, science and technology until his retirement this month.

His wife, Linda, started teaching in a multipurpose room on the Pleasant Ridge School campus and then moved to Magnolia Intermediate School to teach sixth grade. Linda has been teaching for 37 years.

Mary Ann Boyer began her teaching career 38 years ago in a one-room schoolhouse in Emigrant Gap. She moved to a sixth-grade classroom at Magnolia three years later. Mary Ann’s assignment moved to seventh- and eighth-grade students in 1982, and she specialized in the language arts.

Ann Armitage began working at Magnolia 35 years ago and has taught in the PRSD at various schools. Most recently, she taught kindergarten at Cottage Hill.

Dave Phelps, Linda Phelps, Mary Ann Boyer and Ann Armitage were honored last week at a Magnolia Intermediate School teachers’ retirement celebration at the Banner Mountain home of another longtime PRSD employee, Jeff Peach.

Jeff Peach is also retiring, but more gradually. He still keeps an eye on the technology that has been incorporated into Magnolia classrooms over the years.

James Meshwert, former PRSD superintendent, was on hand to say a few words of congratulations to the group. Meshwert, who has served the district since 1967, spent several moments reflecting upon bygone days.

The local chapter of the PEO, another group of education enthusiasts, many of them retired teachers, is sponsoring a bus trip to San Francisco to see the Giants vs. Padres baseball game. The PEO, or Philanthropic Educational Organization, Chapter XC, is using this opportunity to raise funds for the continuing education of women.

PEO usually stages one bus trip per year. They have organized December shopping trips to San Francisco and wine-tasting tours of Napa Valley. This is the first year they have scheduled a baseball game event.

The trip includes a reserved third-base line ticket to the Wednesday, June 25, 12:45 p.m., Giants vs. Padres game, transportation on a charter bus, continental breakfast with coffee, evening snacks on the ride home, bridge tolls and parking fees. Tickets are $75.

The bus departs and returns from two convenient locations: Sierra Pines United Methodist Church in LOP or Staples parking lot in Auburn.

To purchase tickets, contact Chris Boykin at 277-3229 or Jeanette Hostetler at 305-3081.

Laura Lavelle’s column is for southern Nevada County residents to share thoughts and information. Contact her at lavelle@cebridge.net.


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The Union Updated Jun 16, 2014 09:26AM Published Jun 16, 2014 12:49AM Copyright 2014 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.