Meant to be with youngsters: Garbig retires after 36 years in schooling | Group
After 36 years of training, Melanie Garbig has retired from Bowling Green City Schools.
Garbig’s last official day is today after serving as General Manager of the Student Service for the past four years.
Garbig joined Bowling Green in 1995 as a career counselor for Conneaut, Milton and Ridge elementary schools.
She spent four years as a career counselor in high school and was named Headmaster of the Crim Elementary in 2011.
“We’ve done a lot in these six years,” said Garbig. “All of the addition that was put there. All the teachers who have moved and all the children who have moved. “
Milton Elementary closed at the end of the 2010-11 school year and Ridge Elementary followed in 2013. Students from these schools were admitted to the county’s remaining three elementary schools, including Crim.
Garbig, who lives in Perrysburg, said she loved every position she held.
“I think the most fun was probably the high school counseling. I had the most fun and challenge as the headmistress, ”she said. “Would I go back to one of them? Yes. I probably miss the most important things more than anything. “
She said she chose education because she had always loved and drawn to children. Garbig was a babysitter and babysitter for large families with six or seven children right from the start and enjoyed every minute of it.
Special education became her interest because she had a relative with a child with Down syndrome.
“I was around him a lot and got more interested in this area just because I was interacting with this kid,” she said. “I think I was always meant to be with kids.”
Prior to joining Bowling Green, Garbig taught basic adult education at Penta Career Center for two years and fifth grade and special needs education at Bath Local in the Lima School District for five years. She also taught students with disabilities at Hardin Northern Local Schools and the Oakwood Forensic Center in Lima.
Garbig said she had 10 years teaching experience when her husband Dennis was transferred to Northwest Ohio and the job as a high school supervisor was a good step towards getting into the bowling green system.
She said she never considered a career other than teaching.
“My husband will tell you that I’ve loved every job I’ve ever had. He says, ‘I’ve never met anyone who loved everything they did,’ ”she said. “That’s true. No matter what position it was … each of them had something that made it special, that made it what I wanted to do.”
Since she has been at Bowling Green for so long, she has built relationships with many people, and it will be these people who she will miss most in retirement.
“I’m from Perrysburg, but I’ve always said that my community is bowling green.”
The children have changed over the years, especially the last 10 years. She thinks it has to do with technology – children are exposed to so much more than ever before.
“The simple life is no longer so easy. I think the world is just moving too fast and not giving kids the time to grow up. Everyone is expected to grow up faster than they should. Nobody really has time to be a kid, and I think that influenced them. “
Testing in schools has also created more pressure.
As an elementary school teacher, she saw the emphasis on third grade reading guarantees, which took away the fun of learning and teaching, Garbig said.
“For some of us who have been around for a while, it wasn’t like that in the beginning,” she said.
Superintendent Francis Scruci said Garbig’s experience was irreplaceable.
“One of Melanie’s strengths that we will sorely miss is the relationships she has built with students and families,” he said. “She had a true heart for the best for children.”
Garbig is sure there are things she would have liked to achieve that she didn’t have time for, but said she felt she had done a lot during her time in the district.
She began working on the socio-emotional curriculum and positive behavioral interventions and support, and brought nurses into the school buildings.
Garbig hopes the district will bring together everything that has been done to provide health and psychological support to students and turn it into a high-performing program for students.
“I feel good going here as I know the district is open to really looking at this and understanding that this is a priority for our students.”
“She set the framework and the district will continue down this path,” said Scruci.
Garbig is from Darke County and has three grown children and two dogs. She plans to stay in Perrysburg with husband Dennis, who retired a year ago.
She said her main reason for retiring was because her husband was retired. Number two is the year that was just spent in the context of the coronavirus pandemic.
“I don’t want to be the person who doesn’t feel like coming to work every day. This is the first year I’ve ever felt that I didn’t love my job, love my job. “
Garbig received her Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Ohio State University and her Master of Science degree in Education from the University of Dayton. She received her administrative license from Bowling Green State University.
She said she was keeping her options open but hadn’t considered future employment.
She is certified as a K-8 teacher, K-12 intervention specialist, school advisor and administrator.
“I can do anything,” said Garbig. “I keep my options open.”