Page retires after 34 years teaching math

MS math teacher David Page retired at the end of the school year (May 31) after 34 years. During that time, Page said he’s enjoyed teaching math and seeing the light bulb go on when students grasp a concept. (Photo by Kim Brooks)
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     Thirty-four years of teaching inside the former high school/middle school and now middle school. Thirty-four years of Monticello Community School District history. Thirty-four years of commuting to and from the Cedar Rapids area.

     Eighth-grade math teacher David Page retired on May 31 after 34 years.

     When he first started working for the district, he taught high school and middle school math. As his teaching career came to a close, he was just teaching middle school math.

     “It’s always been math,” he said.

     Page said even as a kid himself, he’s always enjoyed math. When he was younger, he underwent a surgery and fell behind in school. “I worked hard to stay on top,” he said.

     Page also helped his sister when she had trouble in math, and both of his parents were in education as well.

     “This was an easy track to get into,” he said.

     During his first few years with the MCSD, Page also taught high school students under Project Lead the Way.

     Page pretty much his entire teaching profession at Monticello.

     “I subbed for half a year after college in Cedar Rapids,” he shared.

     Page, who is preparing for knee replacement surgery any day now, said he had been thinking about retirement for a couple of years.

     “I thought about it two years ago, but chose this year to take advantage of the retirement package,” he said. “I feel I’m ready to be done with teaching.”

     Over the years, aside from teaching, Page also served on the math curriculum committee, but said his drive to Cedar Rapids hindered his school district involvement.

     “I’ve spent a lot of time on the road, a lot of miles on my car,” he said after 34 years.

     Page was also a middle school wrestling coach for a short time early on in his career here in Monticello.

     Looking back on his time with the MCSD, Page said technology has certainly impacted his job over the years.

     “It keeps growing every year and has evolved,” he said.

     Page said the biggest change would take place next year when every Monticello student will have one-on-one access to technology via Google Chromebooks.

     One thing that hasn’t changed in regards to technology, though, is the use of graphic calculators.

     “We’ve had those at least the last 20 years,” recalled Page.

     He said there also seems to be more meetings for teachers to attend than before.

     His years in teaching, specifically teaching one subject in one building, Page said he’s now taught multiple generations.

     “A lot of my students tell me I taught their mom or dad,” he laughed. “I wanted to get out before someone tells me I taught their grandparent.”

     Page shared that, overall, his favorite part of teaching so long has been seeing the light bulb click with his students. “It’s always nice to see the light bulb come on after they’ve been struggling with something,” he said. “It’s satisfying, and it’s not necessarily the reward you expect to see.”

     Page said he would certainly miss the students.

     “We have some really neat kids in the district,” he praised. “I’ve enjoyed the community here.”

     In Page’s absence, sixth-grade teacher Amy Goerdt will pick up where he’s left off. He said they’ve spent time going over the curriculum before his departure.

     “I’ve tried to hand down what I can,” he said.

     Aside from knee surgery and recuperating, Page said he has not definite plans looking into his retirement.

     “I just don’t want to sit around too long,” he joked.



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