Jacoby puts down the beaker and retires
May 22, 2012 • Abby Carpenter, bear facts contributor
Filed under Features
After 34 years of teaching science in District 95, Ron Jacoby is putting down his beakers and picking up his golf clubs for retirement.
For 34 out of the 35 years of his career, Jacoby has been teaching science in District 95.
“I started at the junior high, which was where May Whitney is now,” Jacoby said. “Then I taught at Middle School South when it first opened, and then I came [to LZHS] and I’ve been at the high school ever since then.”
Jacoby graduated with a bachelor’s degree in teaching from Western Illinois University, and then received his master’s degree of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction from Concordia University. Since then he has taken even more classes to further his education and help his teaching skills.
After a long career in one place, Jacoby says he is not to leave LZHS permanently quite yet.
“Next year I am going to substitute in the fall for a teacher going on maternity leave,” Jacoby said. “I’m excited for that.”
Jacoby has many plans for his retirement besides just substitute teaching, though.
“I have a brand new granddaughter; she is seven months old. I’m looking forward to spending time with her,” Jacoby said. “I’ve also kept my golf coaching job; I’ll be doing a little of golf, a lot fishing, and I’m not just going to sit around.”
Jacoby is also looking forward to getting more involved with an organization that is very close to his heart: the Special Olympics.
“My youngest [child] has down syndrome, so I do a lot with Special Olympics. They’ve talked to me about coming to work part time with them for their recreation department,” Jacoby said. “I’m still undecided, but I am definitely not going to stop working with them no matter what. I have a connection to [the organization], and there is a definite reason why I do it. Compared to my other coaching experiences, Special Olympics has a different kind of reward.”
Out of everything Jacoby will miss about teaching during his retirement, he says he will miss his students and his fellow faculty at LZHS the most.
“I think I will miss the daily interaction with the kids and faculty,” Jacoby said. “I work in an office with two thousand people, so many smiling faces saying ‘hi.’ Every day is a new story. I’ll miss that a lot.”
In addition to his classroom environment, Jacoby will also miss the sports environment that he has known throughout his career as a teacher. Throughout his career, Jacoby has coached golf, girls’ and boys’ soccer, girls’ and boys’ basketball, and boys’ volleyball.
“Coaching kids is extra special,” Jacoby said. “Being a coach, I get to see kids in a different light than I do in the classroom. It makes the days worthwhile.”