5-9-2019-1-34-25-PM-7423302

Warm sendoff for longtime board member Schaeffer on exit

By Steve Metsch

The latest board meeting of Lyons School District 103 turned

into a Joanne Schaeffer lovefest as several parents and officials showered her

with adulation after 40 years as a trustee.

Schaeffer lost her re-election bid in the election last

month.

She received several bouquets of flowers, cupcakes and even

a Crave Case of White Castle hamburgers.

One speaker said the new board should “keep (public

comments) at three minutes, because with (Joanne) in the audience, it’s going

to be a long public portion.”

Schaeffer was “never wavering from putting our kids first,”

Helen D’Ambrosio said. “I want to thank you for always asking the hard

questions.”

Jerry Przyzycki, a custodian the past 33 years for the

district, got choked up when he talked about Schaeffer.

“You never, ever cast judgment on anyone until you had all

your facts together É You never once held a grudge and that’s the quality I’ll

always admire most about you,” Przyzycki said.

Outgoing Robinson School Principal Al Molina thanked

Schaeffer for her support over the years. “We love you tremendously,” he said.

“Thank you for your 40 years of wonderful service.”

Marge Hubacek, in her last meeting as board president,

presented Schaeffer with a clock from the entire board.

“You’ve gone through all the ups and downs,” Hubacek said.

“Forty years of commitment to anything is outstanding.”

Glancing at the gifts placed in front of her, Schaeffer

smiled and quipped: “Wow, all these flowers. I’m not dead, am I?”

She said she was “floored” by all the attention: “If I knew

this was going to happen, I would’ve brought my kids along. They would have

really enjoyed this.”

All-day kindergarten and preschool were accomplishments she

noted during her four decades on the board. Improved test scores were another.

She urged new board members to “stand up for what you

believe is right for the children and for the district É If you all always

agree, there’s something wrong going on.”

Ê

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