A former teacher at North Jefferson Elementary is being honored.
Students and staff are remembering the legacy of special needs teacher, Marie Cipriano.
“She was just pleasant to be around,” said Edna Lee, Pre-K Assistant at North Jefferson Elementary.
An educator for Jefferson County Schools for nearly 20 years, she spent the bulk of her career at North Jefferson Elementary as an autism aide. Her retirement in 2017 hit hard, according to her coworkers.
“That was very disappointing when she said that she was going to retire because she had such a sweet spirit,” said Lynn Brown, Cafeteria Manager.
When Cipriano passed away in June 2017, it wasn’t long after that her husband, Dr. Rocco Cipriano, a founding member of the Kiwanis Club of Blue Ridge West Virginia, partnered with the Title One school to start a healthy dining program, teaching table manners among social skills for the family she held so close, in the classroom in Room 4 and the cafeteria.
“Laid back, very kind and if she could do something to help the students. She would do that. She would go above and beyond the call,” said Lee.
The school in return dedicating a plaque in honor of her memory. The cafeteria will be known for years to come as the ‘Cipriano Cafe’ for the lasting impact she’s left behind.
“Really just give them that mindset that no matter where you come from or what your background is, you have the ability to be what you want,” said Nicole Johnson, Principal at North Jefferson Elementary.
The Kiwanis Club is working to start a healthy dining program that focuses on healthy living, table manners and social skills all while highlighting academic achievement and creativity.