Suburban Art Teacher Wraps Up Nearly 50-Year Career

Steve Miller
June 03, 2020 - 6:32 pm
Dianne Washburn

Dianne Washburn (picture courtesy Dianne Washburn)

(WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- An art teacher in Burr Ridge is retiring after 48 years at the same school.

It was the early 1970s when Dianne Washburn got back from Europe and decided to get a job.

She applied as an art teacher at Pleasantdale Middle School District 107. 

“I had hitchhiked through Europe. It was Europe on $5 a day. It was cheap then, and I was messing around and thought, ‘Oh, maybe I’ll get a teaching job.’

“The principal, he hired me that day but he said, ‘Will you stay long?’”

She said she was in her early 20s, so she was honest and said, “I’m not sure.”

“But I just stayed. I liked the community. I liked the kids. I liked the school.”

“Right now I have kids of my ‘kids.’ I find it nourishing to know the families for long periods of time.”

Washburn says kids’ attention spans are shorter these days.

But she says, “There’s always a lot of good kids.”

She says she will go back occasionally, as a volunteer.