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Thursday, December 15, 2016

Highlands Middle School's Shelley Kappesser Retires

22 Years of Great Work
Today was Shelley Kappesser Day in Fort Thomas. She was honored by Highlands Middle School on her 22 years serving in the district. FTM file. 

By Lauren Hellmann, student at Highlands Middle School

“One thing I am going to miss about her is that she always greets me with a smile,” said Sawyer Tate, seventh grader at Highlands Middle School (HMS).  Mrs. Shelley Kappesser, the Principal’s secretary at HMS is officially retiring on January 1st 2017; However, December 15, was her last day with the students.

Mrs. Kappesser was sent off with a proclamation from Mayor Eric Haas because today was "Mrs. Shelley Kappesser Day" in Fort Thomas.

She was surprised today when the entire student body, staff and teachers all gathered in the gym to say, “Thanks.”  All the kids stood and clapped as she was ushered into the gym. She was showered with gifts and well wishes.  And in perfect “Shelley” style all the faculty brought a pot-luck lunch to enjoy with her on her last day.

Mrs. Kappesser said, “Thank you to Michael, Lee, Lori, Linda, Emily, Mandy, Carrie, Gene, Mark, Dawn, Jeff, Jerry, Mary, Jill, Melony, Tonya, Dan, Tim, and every teacher and secretary friend – you made this one of the best days of my life!  If I left your name off, I love you the most!

Mrs. Kappesser is married to Steve Kappesser, and has two children named Stephanie and Zachary. Both of her children are married now and she has one grandson, Russ. Outside of school one of her favorite things to do is to spend time with Russ and go on walks with him. “I love being with my husband, children, walking, baking, and reading,” said Mrs. Kappesser.
Shelley Kappesser. Provided. 

When Mrs. Kappesser graduated from Dixie Heights she attended Northern Kentucky University where she met her husband. She was also the first Miss Northern Kentucky State during her senior year at NKU. She started out in theater, and switched to Business Administration.  Her history in Fort Thomas Independent School District started when she was a substitute teacher at Moyer Elementary when her children went to school there.

When her son Zachary got to his seventh grade year Mrs. Kappesser became the Library Secretary at the Highlands High School. This is the time when the high school and middle school were a part of the same building. When the middle school was built in 2001, Mrs. Kappesser became the first library secretary at the middle school. Mrs. Kappesser said, “I loved being with all the students and comparing our favorite books!”

Mrs. Kappesser’s career as the Principal’s secretary in the middle school started in 2005. At that time Mrs. Mary Adams was the Principal. When Mrs. Adams retired Mrs. Kappesser became the Secretary for the new Principal, Mr. Mark Goetz. After his retirement, she was the secretary to Mr. Michael Howton. Mrs. Kappesser said she has loved working with all of them.

As the Principal’s Secretary there are many jobs that Mrs. Kappesser does. “She keeps us all in line - policies, procedures, budgets, ordering- you name it,” said Mrs. Lee Gatens, Assistant Principal.

Kappesser with Highlands Middle School Principal, Michael Howton. 
She is in charge of payroll for all the teachers, and welcoming subs when teachers are absent. Mrs. Kappesser places all orders for the middle school such as teacher and classroom supplies. Collecting school fees is important when it comes to club dues, and field trip money.

Mrs. Kappesser said, “My most favorite duty is helping parents and students get answers! I receive hundreds of emails each week and match people who need answers with the people who have answers.” 

There are so many memories that the teachers, and students have had with Mrs. Kappesser, and she will definitely be missed. Mrs. Kappesser said that her favorite memory will be seeing all the smiles when she looks up the information in Infinite Campus.

“I am definitely going to miss her smile whenever I make a stop in the office,” said sixth grader, Olivia Hoffmann.

Whenever Mrs. Kappesser accesses Infinite Campus the students’ pictures pop up and it is very wonderful for her to see someone smiling at her when all she needs to do is look up an email address or enter a fee.

“Thank you Mrs. Kappesser for your everyday updates on schoology and giving me candy!” said seventh grade student, Brynn Colton.

Mr. Brian Alessandro, seventh grade teacher, said, “When Mrs. Kappesser retires, I worry that on payday we won’t have delicious treats. On a serious note, I’m not sure her shoes can be filled.”

Mrs. Kappesser said she will definitely miss being the Principal’s secretary, but can’t wait to have more time doing the other things she loves.

Mrs. Kappesser is retiring this year because she said it is time.

Her official retirement date is January 1st 2017, and her last day of work was December 15, 2016.  Mrs. Kappesser has done so many things for the district, it will be very difficult to say good bye. The Middle School will miss her, but Mrs. Kappesser says she is excited to see what God has in store for her. Mrs. Kappesser said, “Thank you to all of you for your generous gifts, wishes, and love over the years.  I will say thank you prayers for you and your families every day!”

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