After nearly three decades as a middle school science teacher, Padma Krishnaswamy, my mom retires from D.A.V. Gopalapuram in Chennai this Friday!
There, now that's some news. She was due to retire two years back, but stayed on after requests from the school to extend her tenure since she is a senior and well respected teacher of the award winning institution (Outlook ranked D.A.V. as the No. 1 school in the country). She still loves the school, the children, and the job, but the longer commute (my parents now live in Thiruvanmiyur) and a desire to finally get around to doing more things around the house have caught up with her. The school is going through a number of changes at this time, and the timing of her decision has nothing to do with them. Change is good in the long run, and I'm sure the school will continue to do well.
Her daily route for the last few decades pretty much meant getting up at 5 in the morning and running through household chores before leaving for school at 7:15 in order to make it past the Adyar traffic. When she gets home by dusk to catch up with other things, it's already been a long day. As you can imagine, my dad is looking forward to her having more time for herself as well for him!
As for me, I'm really happy as well, although I'll probably miss hearing anecdotes from school. Stories of students playing pranks, students getting caught, unusual havan sessions, creative exam answers, and all those other crazy things that go on. (Have you heard the one of the sixth grader who asked a teacher, "Madam, so whom did Draupadi go on her honeymoon with?")
My mom hasn't quite decided what she will be doing next, but one thing we are toying with is helping her set up online Carnatic lessons. She's an excellent singer, who had studied under one of the disciples of Muthuswami Dikshitar as well as with Bala Murali Krishna. Combining her love of music with her passion for teaching may be meaningful, but it's really up to her.
If you are a D.A.V. alum and would like to send her a note, please email her at padmakv at gmail dot com. She doesnt check her email too often, and so I'm hoping she'll be in for a nice warm surprise. Be sure to mention which batch you were from, and any anecdotes you may like to share!