Laurie Bark currently teaches Spanish 1 and Spanish 3 classes at Kennedy. She plans to retire at the end of this school year after 26 years of teaching at Kennedy.
Q: How long have you been at Kennedy?
A: I have been at Kennedy for 26 years.
Q: What is your fondest memory here?
A: I have too many fond memories to decide so I think I’ll say every day I have taught here because I was working with our students, teaching Spanish, with people I admire and like. I love my profession.
Q: What about Kennedy is unique or special to you?
A: When I arrived here, I was a little skeptical because I’d always heard Kennedy staff members were a bunch of rebels. What I found was that these “Kennedy rebels” were simply working and fighting to develop the best classes possible for every student. I have loved being a part of the “rebellion” and am proud that this reputation continues.
Q: Has Kennedy changed you?
A: I hope so—change is a great thing because there is no growth without change. I know I learn from my students and colleagues every day. And I hope that I have changed Kennedy for the better, too.
Q: What are your post-retirement plans?
A: After I adjust to not having bells to tell me when to go on to the next hour, I’m hoping for lots of travel, spending more time with family and friends, having my grandchildren with me a lot, swimming, fishing, reading all night if I want, playing cards, and some volunteering—just doing things whenever I want.
Q: Do you have any advice for this years and future graduates?
A: Follow your dream. Whatever your dream profession is, work and fight to make that dream come true. (Oh, and don’t take out a bunch of student loans. They are horrible burdens after you graduate. Work your way through school.)