A-P teacher spotlight: Hometown girl Simon goes from associate to educator in Parkersburg

Aplington-Parkersburg elementary special education instructor Connie Simon (pictured) has taught at the district for 25 years and, before that, served as an associate. She is a 1969 graduate of Parkersburg High School. (Robert Maharry/Eclipse News-Review)

Connie Simon loves Parkersburg so much that she’s never left. As she inches toward retirement (sometime in the next few years, she says), the elementary special ed instructor reflected on a 25-year career in education and how she went from associate to teacher when the opportunity arose. She graduated from Parkersburg High School in 1969 and attended classes in the building that now houses the medical clinic before moving on to UNI.

Other than two years working out of Cedar Falls through the AEA, Simon has only worked in the Parkersburg and Aplington-Parkersburg school system, first as an associate at the high school. Becoming a special ed teacher was anything but an easy process: it required overnight summer classes that ran from 7:00 p.m. to two in the morning at UNI.

“If I would’ve known what it involved, I would’ve never done it, I don’t think,” she said. “It was just really intense.”

And when she got the job, she was working with students from Aplington (before the consolidation), Ackley-Geneva, Grundy Center and Gladbrook-Reinbeck in addition to Parkersburg because the other districts didn’t have special education teachers.

For the full story, see this week’s Eclipse News-Review. Subscribe by calling 319-346-1461 or by clicking here.