Judy Wheaton prepares farewell announcement
Voice of Watertown Middle School shares her memories before her retirement
June 26, 2015 • 1,688 views
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Judy Wheaton has worked for 12 principals, but Mr. Carter will be her last.
Students and teachers at Watertown Middle School have been hearing Mrs. Wheaton on the intercom throughout the school year. Many of them do not know who Mrs. Wheaton really is. This will be the last year WMS will be hearing her voice, because she is retiring.
Mrs. Wheaton grew up in Newton with her sister. She went to Notre Dame Academy and Sacred Heart, and then to Katie Gibbs college. Mrs. Wheaton was a competitive skater and wanted to be one as an adult.
“It was awesome. I ate, slept, and drank skating,’’ she said. “It’s like you have a whole different family.”
Mrs. Wheaton also gets called in as a skating coach sometimes and revisits her past of ice skating. She loves working with kids and believes strongly in education.
“If you can make a difference in just one student’s life, you’ve done your job,” Mrs. Wheaton said touchingly.
She did not start as the guidance secretary liaison at WMS. She first worked at the business office and then at WHS for a year before starting her first of 31 years at WMS.
Many people at Watertown Middle School do not know what Mrs. Wheaton does in the office every day, but she communicates between students, parents, Mr. Carter, Mr. Del Porto, and the teachers. She also prepares the morning and afternoon announcements everyday.
Mrs. Wheaton starts her day by getting to school at 7 every morning, 40 minutes later everyone hears her voice on the intercom saying the morning announcements. She also makes all the honor roll certificates for the students, all the schedules for each term, as well as the report cards.
“I will definitely not miss getting up at 4 every morning,” she said.
So many memories were made during Mrs. Wheaton’s career. One of her favorites was when WMS was a K-8 school and on Secretary’s Day the principal asked the students to make cards for her and she was so surprised that day.
“They were all so sweet and I still have some of them,” she said.
One of her funniest memories happened while the school was K-8.
“A little boy in kindergarten came down and flung his body on my overstuffed chair I had in the corner of my office,’’ she said. “He told me he thinks he’s sick. I asked him what he thinks he has, and he told me he thinks he has spring fever!”
Scary things have happened to her in her career, but “most scary things that happened can’t be put in the newspaper,” Mrs. Wheaton stated.
One story she mentioned was OK to put in the newspaper.
“One of the scariest moments working here was an eighth-grade boy was running very fast through the cafeteria and his hand went right through the glass doors and he severed it!” she said.
Outside of school, Mrs. Wheaton will soon have more time enjoying some of her favorite hobbies and also spending more time with her three kids, Page, Chad and Kim. She enjoys traveling, and she plans to travel to other states that she hasn’t visited before. She has visited up and down the East Coast and now wants to visit the Midwest.
“The first thing I’ll do as soon as I retire is unplug my alarm clock and not pay attention to it,” Mrs. Wheaton said gladly.
During the summer Mrs. Wheaton likes to go to beaches down the Cape and New Hampshire.
“Being at the beach at 3:00 with a Diet Coke and a good book is the best,” she said.
Her son is getting married this summer, so she’s looking forward to that and then she will be relaxing after it happens.
When Mrs. Wheaton gets a lot of free time on her hands, she will be doing what she loves most: building dollhouses. She once built one almost 4 feet tall.
“But the most fun part is decorating,” she said excitedly.
A retirement party was held for Mrs. Wheaton at Porcini’s on School Street. Many of her old principals and teachers that she hasn’t seen in a very long time were there, and so were current WMS teachers. There was a roast.
“They made fun of me in a good way and it was hilarious,’’ she said. “I will miss everybody and visit back for sure.”
–June 25, 2015–