Octorara Area School District says goodbye to four teachers

Octorara School District EmbleFour long-time Octorara Area School District teachers offered their retirement resignations at a school board meeting Monday, April 21, which were accepted with regret and kind words from district Superintendent Tom Newcome.

Retiring are:

  • David Rutledge, school-to-career coordinator and a district employee since 1992.
  • Jeffrey Butch, a high school social studies teacher and student council advisor who was first hired in 1999.
  • Debra Bloth, a high school French/Spanish teacher hired in 1975.
  • Susan Hetrick, a third/fourth grade teacher who has been a district employee since 1997.

Newcome said Rutledge, formerly a high school counselor, moved beyond that role to guide many improvements to the district’s career and technology education programs.

“Many of the things done in the career and technology areas are largely due to his vision,” Newcome said. “We really appreciate his efforts and he will be missed.”

The superintendent called Bloth and Hetrick “two very solid staff members who had a lot of impact on students over the years. We will be hard-pressed to replace them,” he said.

Butch went beyond his role as a teacher to guide the high school student council in a charitable effort called Nickel Day.

Each Friday students gathered spare change for worthy causes and during Butch’s career about $100,000 was collected and donated to students and local families in need, and to charities.

In other personnel matters during the meeting the school board approved the hiring of Matthew Furlong as accounting supervisor and human resources director at a $70,000 salary; approved Gail Bolger’s resignation as high school principal’s secretary; and hired Stephanie Czetli for that position at a $31,500 salary.

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