There’s this odd mix of traditions when it comes to teacher retirements.

Most teachers don’t want a fuss.

I have known teachers who have asked that I and the district keep it a secret until the job must contractually be posted.

I understand.

But it’s not me.

To me it is an excuse for a party.

And any excuse for a party is good enough for me.

Years ago our district would hold a retirement reception for all the retirees, including administrators, custodians. secretaries or teachers. There would be some cake and mixed nuts. Some Country Time lemonade. A guest book to sign. Retired teachers would be invited back for a luncheon and then stay for the reception.

It was a sweet kind of small-district tradition. Budget cuts ended that practice about five years ago. Maybe they still have the luncheon. I don’t know.

I guess I will be finding out.

The board still honors retirees and 25 year teachers at a dinner. When I hit 25 years and went to the dinner I got a small glass clock with my name printed on a faux-brass metal strip that required me to pull off a paper strip over the adhesive and stick it on the clock myself.

I’m off for Spring Break now. When I go back to work on April 2nd the recognitions will begin. The district one. The IEA Region dinner. The local union gathering. The building (we have four who are retiring).

I’m throwing my own. Memorial Day weekend at a dive bar on the Northside. A couple of friends will be playing some live music. The Carpenter Ukulele Society has a playlist we have been rehearsing. Food. Drink. No speeches.

A retired teacher who now subs in our building asked, “You have to throw a party for yourself?”

“Not have to. Want to.”

“What if nobody comes?”

That’s a question I have asked my whole life. But I have learned that if you throw a party, have a band and pay for the drinks, they will come.

3 thoughts on “Party!

  1. Around here Fred there are no rules anymore for parties, and I’ve seen parties like yours too. Yep food and drink will do the trick. I have never seen anything quite like teachers around free food, it’s like they haven’t had a meal in weeks.Our district doesn’t do jack for anyone 25 yeas in or 40 years, it’s up to the school.

  2. >>. There would be some cake and mixed nuts. Some Country Time lemonade.>>

    So funny- they knew how to live large.

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