SIDNEY — Theresa Kirsch began her career as a teacher for preschool aged children with disabilities in Hamilton, Ohio. In 1976, she was hired by the Shelby County Board of Developmental Disabilities as one of three teachers and a staff of less than 10 people.
At that time, classes were conducted at St. John’s Lutheran Church. Classrooms were setup on Monday morning and everything was put away on Friday afternoon each week. Eventually classes were moved to what used to be known as the Children’s Home. In 1978 a new building was built and the program was named Shelby Hills. When the new facility opened Kirsch began teaching infants, toddlers and preschoolers.
“I was fascinated by how children develop language and decided to attend the University of Cincinnati where I received my degree in speech language pathology,” said Kirsch.
After graduate school, Kirsch worked as a speech therapist at the Hamilton County Board of Developmental Disabilities. She realized she missed the opportunity to work in a smaller school setting where everyone worked as a team to provide the best services possible for each individual child. When the opportunity presented itself, she returned to the Shelby County Board of Developmental Disabilities as a speech language therapist. For the last 25 years she has worked exclusively with preschool aged children.
“I love working with children of this age. They are so curious and just excited about life. Every day is a new adventure; you never know what to expect,”Kirsch said.
With over 40 years in the field of education and 38 years of service with the Shelby County Board of Developmental Disabilities, Kirsch will be transitioning to retirement.
“This transition to another lifestyle won’t be easy because I’m leaving a job I’ve always loved; the wonderful children and families, as well as coworkers have many who have become life-long friends. It’s been a fulfilling and exciting career but I am ready to take on a new future,” said Kirsch.
“Theresa’s years at Shelby Hills are to be celebrated! She is a truly inspiring and dedicated Speech Therapist, who will be missed by many. We look forward to honoring her dedication and loyalty to the children of Shelby County,” said Kathie Lammers, Early Childhood supervisor.
In retirement Kirsch looks forward to having more time to do things she enjoys such as traveling, decorating, gardening, and spending time with friends and family.
An open house celebrating Kirsch’s retirement will be held on Friday, May 12, from 2 to 4:30 p.m. in the Shelby Hills gym located at 1200 S. Children’s Home Road, Sidney Ohio.