Giving Back As Volunteer Keeps Downey 'Young' and Bulldogs Sharp
"What I try to do is, if a student doesn't get a specific concept, I'll get with them and bring them up to par," said Douglas Downey, a retired teacher who know volunteers at Meridian Ranch Elementary School. "If a student has been gone, I'll get them up to speed."
Downey says he sees good things happening in District 49. "These parents have a real commitment to education that I've seen in my time in D49 classrooms," said the former Colorado Springs District 11 and Cheyenne Mountain District 12 educator.
"He's so great to have in the classroom," said Katy Gibes, MRES fifth-grade teacher and Downey's daughter. "It's such a gift. It's as good for him as it is for them."
Volunteering for up to four hours at a time, Downey sees his volunteering as an important part of retirement. "For me, they keep me young," he said about the students he helps.
"I feel like he's a human calculator because he knows all the answers," said Karsyn McCune, MRES fifth-grader about Downey.
"It never ends," said Downey about learning, "the education never ends."