Nancy Brown is retiring this summer after 28 years of running parent observation classes for 2- and 3-year-olds at MVLA's Adult School. During the classes, parents can observe the temperament and personality of their children as the toddlers play in a specially designed classroom. While the children continue to play, parents attend a lecture and discuss parenting techniques.
"The parents bond very closely," Brown said. "They are sharing a lot of new challenges."
Parents and past students, some of them home from college, held a retirement party for Brown at Bubb Elementary School on May 15. Brown, who is teaching summer school until the end of June, said she is going to spend extra time with her four grandchildren and travel with her husband during her retirement.
As for seeing former students, "You always wonder what will happen to them in the future," Brown said. "It is always nice to see your students."
During her time with the program, which is part of the Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District, Brown worked with more than 1,000 families. Parents register through the Adult School, and attend classes behind the MVLA district office. Brown helped design the program along with Joan Somers, who retired nine years ago.
"Teacher Nancy is one of our community's greatest treasures," parent Lynn Fletcher said. "Nancy is someone I continue to seek out when I need a fresh perspective on things going on in my teens' lives."
"She is an ongoing inspiration to me, and I know I speak for others when I say we are truly blessed to have her in our lives," she added.
Diane Hart, who attended the parent observation class with her twins, will continue to run the program when Brown retires. Brown said she has "enjoyed every day" of the program.
"I think it is important to leave teaching when you love it," said Brown. "Thank you to all the parents and children who have given me 28 fun years."