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Arbor Hills Junior High principal Gaiffe to retire

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Rose Gaiffe, principal at Arbor Hills Junior High, is to retire Aug. 1.

The Blade/Natalie Trusso Cafarello
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When Principal Rose Gaiffe looks back on three decade career in the Sylvania School District, she remembers some initiatives she started that have blossomed into bona fide programs today.

Mrs. Gaiffe, 58, head of Arbor Hills Junior High School, decided it was time to retire. Her education career will end on Aug. 1.

Looking back, she remembers the more tedious days when teachers updated parents by phone about their children’s homework, rather than electronically.

“I started a Homework Hotline to let parents know what their child’s homework was. I sat in a tiny room in McCord Junior High School and each teacher would give me homework assignments,” she said. “I would read each one into the answering machine.”

Parents would have to listen to the whole recorded message, waiting to hear their child's assignments. Nowadays, the program uses digital documents, allowing parents to log into the online homework matrix, directly tracking student assignments and progress.

Progress was key to Mrs. Gaiffe career.

“I’ll miss creating new programs and analyzing data,” she said. In particular, test assessments were given to children to measure proficiency in a particular subject. Mrs. Gaiffe said she and other teachers would analyze the data to form an intervention plan with the student, providing proper instruction needed for them to progress to state-testing levels, she said.

Mrs. Gaiffe’s teaching career began with special education. She received a bachelor's degree in education from the University of Toledo in 1977. By 1978, she she was hired as a long-term substitute learning education teacher at McCord, and eventually taught special education at the school. From 1995 to 2008, she was a counselor at Timberstone Junior High School. Then she became principal  at Arbor Hills.

She has two master's degrees -- one in guidance and counseling received from the UT in 1982 and the other in administration from the University of Cincinnati in 2007, the same year she won Teacher of the Year award.

During retirement, she plans to stay in Sylvania with her family and hopes to be be called upon by the district as a substitute administrator. She said she will assist whomever takes her place to bring the person up to speed on the new Core Curriculum. At this point, her replacement has not been announced. 

Contact Natalie Trusso Cafarello at: 419-206-0356, or ntrusso@theblade.com, or on Twitter @natalietrusso.

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