It happens at this time every year and, sadly, it goes virtually unnoticed.
But the retirement of school teachers, counselors and other staff members is worthy of recognition and thanks by the entire community far greater than the tokens of appreciation given them at Tuesday night's school board meeting.
Just imagine how many lives each of the 21 certified staff members who retired this year in the Carson City School District have changed. Some accomplished that by instilling the importance of learning, by showing a contagious passion for the lessons they taught. Many of them did it with reassuring words or by staying late to work with students.
There is no way to tally the positive impacts those staff members have had on society. They themselves usually have no way to know how many of the seeds they planted have grown.
But thousands of their students have gone on to college, to successful careers (some as teachers themselves, we hope) and to raise families. In light of that, it's easy to understand the motivation behind this quote from George Bernard Shaw, "To me the sole hope of human salvation lies in teaching."
It's all the fashion these days to criticize teachers and the school system, but no one should question the importance of the jobs they do. Retiring teachers who have done their jobs well can know that they've had a tremendous impact on the world.
And for that reason we extend a sincere thank you to this year's 21 retirees from the Carson City School District.