By Julia Demskie, Assistant Editor-in-Chief
New Paltz High School will lose a glowing, passionate member of its staff at the end of the 2021-2022 school year. Linda Sutton, beloved English teacher, and junior class advisor, has decided to retire after an incredible 33 years. During her time in New Paltz, she has been known to all as a kind soul and powerful educator.
Mrs. Sutton has always aspired to be a teacher. “When I was a little girl, I used to play school in the neighborhood. I’d give the neighborhood kids homework,” she recalls fondly. She attended Binghamton University, initially majoring in child psychology, but soon realized that education was her true “calling”. She has maintained that passion for educating for an impressive 36 years.
“They keep me young, they make me laugh.”Linda Sutton
“The kids teach me things… all the time.” Mrs. Sutton’s favorite part of her job is the teens she spends her time with. “They keep me young, they make me laugh.” She also expressed that she feels “really proud of the teachers at New Paltz High School” and the environment they create for their students. “I’m going to miss being around such smart people all the time.”
When she concludes her time at the school in June of 2022, one of the things she is most excited for is being able to travel with loved ones. She hopes that the COVID-19 pandmeic will subside, making international travel possible and safe once again.
In addition, Mrs. Sutton expressed her desire to give back to her community in the years to come. She explained that “teaching has ‘filled my cup’”, and she’s excited to find another niche that will do the same. She’s considering her volunteer work and possibly being in a school setting of some sort.
More than anything, Mrs. Sutton seeks to leave an impression on the children she teaches. Her most important message? “Be a lifelong learner.” Not only has she always felt an eagerness to educate, she has also loved learning her whole life. She continues to cherish learning from books, people, and visiting different places. She strives to highlight the importance of knowledge in all aspects of life as something that is neverending.
“I think a lot of times in this country, we don’t appreciate it… everybody’s guaranteed an education through high school, and complain about it, but it’s not that way everywhere else,” she urges, encouraging all of her students to make the best of their time in school, and to not take any of it for granted.
Best of wishes to Mrs. Sutton as she moves onto this new phase of her life, and a sincere thanks for the everlasting impression she has left on the community of New Paltz High School.