It’s no secret that being in charge of a room full of pre-schoolers or kindergartners takes a lot of patience, more than most people have.
This spring, Peabody-Burns USD 398 will lose a teacher who — after 39 years of teaching the youngest age groups introduced to school — demonstrated an almost unbelievable amount of patience, love, and care to her to all of her pupils. Venita Loewen will retire after this year, passing on the classroom she has taught more than two generations.
Justin Weerts, whose daughter Jozelynn is currently in the last class Loewen will see out of her doors, remembered what it was like himself to have her as a teacher many years ago at Peabody Elementary School.
“Mrs. Loewen taught me a lot of the basic stuff that kids need to learn,” Weerts said. “Like how to hang my coat up and play duck, duck, goose. She always had so much patience. She wouldn’t even get mad if I ate the Play-Doh and glue,” Weerts added with a chuckle.
“Peabody will be losing a great asset to our community,” he said. “She taught me, and now Jozelynn, too, something pretty important. And that is not only the difference between left and right, but of right and wrong.”
“She smiles a lot and she’s my favorite teacher,” said Jozelynn, who will be moving on to kindergarten next year. “I will miss how fun her and my other teachers are. Mrs. Loewen’s curls always make me laugh though because there are so many!”
District aide Peggy Phillips, who has been a significant staple in the lives of Peabody’s future herself, will be on the top of the list of those who will miss Loewen next year, but she understands considering retirement is visible on her horizon as well.
“Venita is admired, respected and will be missed,” Phillips said. “Although our first year together was a little bit frustrating, trying to comply with Headstart’s guidelines, we were very lucky because we were both willing to work together. I have a lot of respect for her, and, not only myself, but all of us wish her the best of luck.”