Katy Pruitt, Washington Irving Elementary School Principal, congratulates teacher retirees at a recent luncheon and reception honoring their years of service. The three teachers served in their profession for a total of 97 years; with 75 of those years in the Durant Public Schools.
Cindy Briscoe, a Kindergarten teacher, graduated from Durant High School and earned her Bachelor’s in Education at Southeastern Oklahoma State University. She also completed hours of post-graduate work at SOSU. Cindy is retiring with 21 years of teaching, all at Washington Irving as a Kindergarten teacher. While at Washington Irving she had the privilege of teaching across the hall from her mother, Linda Spencer, who also retired from W.I. as a first grade teacher. The Washington Irving yearbook was dedicated to Cindy in 2011/2012. She is married to Tim Briscoe. Her children, Adam and Lauren are Washington Irving Alumni and graduates of Durant High School.
Nancy Cleveland, second grade teacher, is retiring with 35 years of service with 27 of those in the Durant District. Nancy is a native of Bryan County and a graduate of Kemp High School. She received her Bachelors Degree in Education and her Masters in Reading Specialist from Southeastern Oklahoma University. She began her teaching career in Yuba Public Schools where she taught with her sister, Burma Daley, who has also retired from teaching. She left Yuba to teach at George Washington Elementary in Durant before moving to Washington Irving. Her children, Phillip and Monica are graduates of Durant High School. Monica followed in her Mother’s footsteps and is a teacher in the Frisco, TX schools.
Linda Condor, school counselor, is retiring with 41 years of service, with 27 of those served in the Durant Schools. Linda received her Bachelors in Elementary Education from Northeastern Oklahoma State University. Her Masters in School Counseling was earned at Southeastern Oklahoma State University. She is also certified in the areas of: Elementary Principal, School Psychometrist, and Reading Specialist. Ms. Condor began her career as a second grade teacher in Valliant, OK. She later moved to Durant to obtain her Masters and was employed at SOSU as a counselor. She worked for the Oklahoma State Department of Education as a Psychometrist before accepting the position of Reading Specialist at Durant Middle School. The last 19 years have been in the position of School Counselor at Washington Irving. In 2007 she earned her National Board Teacher Certification in Early Childhood through Young Adulthood School Counseling and in 2009 was honored with the KMAD/KMKT Teacher of the Month Award. One of the highlights in her career has been to work with her daughter-in-law, Erin, who is a Kindergarten teacher at W.I. Her son, Chase attended W.I. and is a graduate of Durant High, he is a Firefighter for the City of Durant. McKenzie, her granddaughter, has just completed her first year at W.I. as a Pre-K student.
All three retirees agree they will miss their friends, students, and “life in the public schools,” but look forward to retirement as a new adventure.