Coming back from retirement

Karen Curren returns to Pittsburg High School to teach physical science

Story by Hailey Gray

Science Teacher Karen Curran decided to retire in 2021 after 32 years of teaching. However, the school was in need of a position being filled, so Curran stepped up.

Science teacher Mary Packard has known Coach Curran for decades. They met in a college class. After college, they both started to teach at Fort Scott and coached together there for ten years.

“I am very glad [Curran] came back to Pittsburg High School. Even though we just started, she still makes me laugh,” Packard said. “I really missed her not being in school with us last year.”

Junior Kali Terry has been close with Coach Curran in past years. In Terry’s freshman year, Curran was the head softball coach for Pittsburg High School.

“When I heard that Curran was coming back to teach I literally was jumping for joy,” Terry said. “It made me so happy that we would have her positive attitude in the building.”

Coach Curran received many warm welcomes on the first day back. However, after this year, she will be going back into retirement.

“The former junior and senior students have really been amazing,” Curran said. “I’ve treasured seeing and talking with each one.”

Packard and Curran have coached softball, volleyball, golf, and archery together. Not only did they coach together, they also played softball and golf together.

“I swear every time we see eachother we laugh,” Packard said. “Something funny from a movie or a past thing that happened to us.”

According to Packard, Curran is a great teacher. She is organized, knows her science, and gets the point across really well.

“Mrs. Curran has great qualities as a teacher,” Packard said. “I’m glad that the current freshmen get to have her as a teacher.”

According to Terry, Curran will bring many smiles to faces and will make the school better in her year back teaching.

“Curran being back will impact the students because she is very helpful and a good teacher,” Terry said. “Not only does she teach you physical science but she also teaches you life lessons.” 

According to Curran, she loves being back and it feels like she never left. Although, she will enjoy being able to spend more time with her family after this school year again.

“I thought it was going to be harder to get back into the daily routine, but it has definitely come easier than I thought,” Curran said. “It’s not hard to come to work everyday when you are looking forward to seeing so many friends and kids you love being around.”

According to Curran, it was not hard to agree to fill the position. But she will enjoy being able to spend time with family and friends again after this school year.

“I’m happy to have been able to fill a need for the school and the district when they really didn’t have any other options,” Curran said. “I missed the kids, the admin, the staff, and my close friend, Mary Packard.”