Newly Certified Teacher Signs First Contract at Age 70

SAU 24 Superintendent Jacqueline Coe (left) with Deb Raymond as she signs her contract.

SAU 24 Superintendent Jacqueline Coe (left) with Deb Raymond as she signs her contract. Courtesy

Deb Raymond officially begins her career as a teacher at John Stark on November 1 at the age of 70

Deb Raymond officially begins her career as a teacher at John Stark on November 1 at the age of 70 —

Published: 10-25-2023 12:00 PM

No excuses. That’s what newly certified Special Education teacher at John Stark Regional High School, Deb Raymond, has to say to anyone who thinks they should give up on their dreams and goals. At the age of 70, Deb just signed her first teacher contract on Oct. 23 with SAU 24 Superintendent Jacqueline Coe looking on.

“Deb’s story is one of inspiration. I was honored to be with her when she signed her contract. I’m also so excited that she has made John Stark the place she wants to stay and teach after reaching such an incredible personal goal,” said Superintendent Jacqueline Coe. “What better way to inspire students than having her in front of them each day as an example of what can be accomplished.”

Raymond began her career in public schools as a paraprofessional in Goffstown. “I left that job after a couple of years, but I found I so missed the kids,” said Deb. But with her son in high school in Goffstown, she knew she didn’t want to work in the same building. In 2002, she applied and was hired at John Stark Regional as a paraprofessional. It was at John Stark that she was encouraged to return to school for a few classes, which she did at age 55. She earned her undergraduate degree after taking coursework at Manchester Community College and Granite State College. But Deb being Deb, that was not enough. She then enrolled at SNHU to earn a Master of Special Education.

After college, Deb continued the work she loved as a para- at John Stark until this fall when an opening for a special education teacher opened up.

“I was encouraged to apply, so I did. I got the job!” Deb will begin her dream teaching job at John Stark in the Special Education Department on Nov. 1.

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