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Saturday, April 9, 2016

Olive Warren who started teaching career at Nicholson honoured at retirement party from Chapleau Public School staff in 1971

Frank Coulter, Olive Warren
Tributes were paid to Olive Warren, a long-time member of the Chapleau Public School teaching  staff when she retired in 1971.

Born and raised in Chapleau she was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Leigh, one of the community's pioneer families. She attended Chapleau Public and Chapleau High schools.

After attending North Bay Teachers College then called Normal School, Mrs. Warren recalled that her first teaching position was in 1934-35 during the Great Depression at Nicholson Siding on the Canadian Pacific Railway 22 miles west of Chapleau. In those days Nicholson was a "flourishing community, with a two classroom school, complete with a wood burning stove, "... a far cry" from facilities available in most schools of 1971.

Her salary?: "$600 a year."

Mrs. Warren worked as a supply teacher at Chapleau Public School from 1935 to 1941, then became full time. She took some years off to raise her children, Leigh and Bert, then was fulltime until she retired. She married R.L. "Bob" Warren.

For most of her teaching career she taught Grades 3 and 4.

The decor in the Trinity United Church Hall where the retirement party took place was "hearts and flowers"  created by Maartje Doornekamp and Gail Poulin, with the assistance of students.

Referring to the decor, Rev. Murray Arnill, chair of the Chapleau Board of Education,  commented that it was suitable for "a happy and sad occasion" paying tribute to Mrs. Warren's contribution as a teacher, but adding she would be missed.

Public school principal Foy Wright said that Chapleau can be grateful for the contribution that Mrs. Warren had made to the teaching profession, adding that she was "always trying to think of something new, always striving for improvement."
Names not with photo about 1969 though

Board of education member Frank Coulter made a presentation on behalf of the board while Lillian Robinson presented a gift on behalf of the teachers. Both paid tribute to Mrs. Warren in their remarks.

In her remarks, Mrs. Warren said that kindness and understanding play an important part in molding and developing desirable characteristics in pupils, and that proper attitudes must be taught. To accomplish this teachers must always seeking new methods to make it happen, she added in a Sault Star story about her retirement.

Mrs. Robinson greeted the guests who filled the church hall to pay tribute to Mrs. Warren, while Mrs. Jack Cockburn, Mrs. Opal Simpson, and my mother, Muriel E. Morris, who had retired from the public school staff in 1970, served them.  My email is mj.morris@live.ca

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Michael J Morris

Michael J Morris
MJ with Buckwheat (1989-2009) Photo by Leo Ouimet

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