Barbara Jenks, retiring principal at St. Rose School, waves to students as they leave school for summer vacation. Mrs. Jenks has seen many students go from kindergarten to high school in 21 years.
After watching students grow up from preschoolers to high schoolers for 21 years, St. Rose School principal Barbara Jenks is retiring to have more time watching her eight grandchildren grow up.
“I’m going to miss the children the most, as well as the faculty, staff, and leadership,” Mrs. Jenks said. “I’ll miss being a part of this community, but I’m retiring to be with my family.”
Mrs. Jenks and her husband, Bill, married for 43 years, have four children who live in San Diego, San Francisco, Boston, and Durham, N.C.
She spent more than 30 years in Catholic schools. She taught for 11 years before becoming a principal. The school, connected to the St. Rose Parish, is on Front Street in Perrysburg. It serves students in kindergarten through eighth grade.
Thursday she took part in her final eighth-grade graduation as a principal.
“I saw children from when they were peeled off their mom to get in class to going to high school and everything in between,” she said. “To send them off to high school is amazing.”
The Rev. Marvin Borger said he has been able to enjoy his first seven years as the pastor for St. Rose with Mrs. Jenks in charge of the school. He said she is professional and respected by her peers. While they will miss her, he said he understands why she is leaving.
“She wants to be with her family, and she deserves that,” he said. “She has a wonderful family.”
Barbara Jenks, left, retiring principal at St. Rose School, gives kindergarten graduate Luke Miller, 6, some advice for the summer break on the last day of school at St. Rose School in Perrysburg.
Bryon Borgelt of St. John’s Jesuit Academy will become principal later this month. He has taught high school history and was the middle school principal during his 15 years at St. John’s.
Father Borger said his experience, skill, and education made Mr. Borgelt a stand-out candidate. He and his family are members of St. Rose, Father Borger said.
During her time at St. Rose, Mrs. Jenks helped bring in more classrooms for grades 1-5, musicals, art, and Spanish programs. She shepherded the transition from half-day to all-day kindergarten, added electives for the junior high, introduced a iPad program, and was involved with the new gym and cafeteria during her time as principal.
“Embrace it, and enjoy the kids,” is Mrs. Jenks’ advice to Mr. Borgelt.