Joan Siegel, Student Services Coordinator at the Burlington Technical Center is retiring from the Burlington School District after 36 years in education and 26 years working for BSD. She started her career in New York City doing crisis intervention with students with disabilities, an experience which taught her much about how to do the work she does. After 6 years of doing crisis intervention, Joan moved to Vermont.
During her first year in the Burlington School District, Joan was a special education teacher 50% at Burlington High School and 50% at Edmunds Middle School. She became a student services coordinator at BTC the following year and has done that ever since. She is never bored because students and families always change, every year.
I always acknowledge that every person, every student, has a story and it’s important to learn that story so you can work with them.Joan Siegel
Words from Joan:
What I am proudest of: I’m proudest of the supportive work I’ve done with students and families. I’m really proud of the relationships I’ve built with students, families, and Chittenden County special educators. My relationships: being empathetic and supportive while considering all aspects of a student’s experience at BTC.
What I will miss most: The thing I will miss most at BTC is the passion of the instructors for their disciplines and the passion of the students. This is what makes it so special. Everyone chooses to be there and that makes it an amazing place to be!
Advice to pass on: Every day is different … it’s all about relationships. I always acknowledge that every person, every student has a story and it’s important to learn that story so you can work with them. Most important to me is to get to know the student and their story.
Future plans: I need to evaluate the new world around us before I make specific plans. I certainly want to give back to the educational community in some manner. I don’t know what that looks like now.
Words from Colleagues:
“Joan was perfectly suited to her role … as if she was born for it. Working with her to support my students, I felt gently guided to be what my students needed me to be, while she gently guided them. I bet she’ll be hearing from ex-students for the rest of her life. ” Bram Moreinis
“Can’t believe my first responder is retiring!!! Who will I call first now? Well, at least we could find a way to laugh about it….most of the time. ” Jason Raymond
” The kids sure are going to miss Joan and her snacks! Who else will keep the right flavor of pop tarts on hand for Fridays! I will miss her and her smile!” Joan Williamson
“Joan helped me survive my first year of teaching and encouraged me to continue on this path. I will miss her!” Rosa Giangregorio
“Joan kept us walking, running, and moving forward! I’m grateful for her wise and experienced counsel, her kind words, her unfailing encouragement, and her care.” Kris Breen