Marilee McAlpin retires after more than 40 years of teaching - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Marilee McAlpin retires after more than 40 years in the classroom

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CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) - Marilee McAlpin just wrapped up her 41st school year as a teacher. She spent 39 of those years at St. Patrick Catholic School in Cedar Falls.

McAlpin initially taught fourth and fifth grades, but switched to first and second grades about two decades ago.

"I just decided, you know, I've always loved reading. I'd love to help students get a good start. It was a challenge for me, and I've enjoyed it very much," said Marilee McAlpin.

The University of Northern Iowa grad said she never thought of her job as work.

"I've enjoyed it, and I still do. It's a great profession," said McAlpin.

Kimberly Graven, the principal at St. Pat's, said not only is McAlpin a good teacher, but she's a good Catholic teacher.

"You see her at mass every weekend, and she's super involved in the parish. So that's just an added thing the kids can really look up to her as a person as well," said Kimberly Graven.

After four decades of reading, writing, and arithmetic, Marilee McAlpin is ready to retire.

"I think the biggest thing we'll miss is just her positive attitude because she's here early everyday. She's always smiling. She just has this energy that you don't see everywhere," said Graven.

Students and staff at St. Pat's honored McAlpin and other teachers leaving during this prayer service.

"When August comes around it will probably really hit me, but I plan to substitute teaching and being a volunteer," said McAlpin.

McAlpin said incorporating her faith in learning made it easy to be at St. Patrick school for so many years.

In retirement, she plans to spend more time with her grandchildren.
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