Online News Day or Knight - Official news site of North Penn High School - 1340 Valley Forge Rd. Lansdale, PA

The Knight Crier

Online News Day or Knight - Official news site of North Penn High School - 1340 Valley Forge Rd. Lansdale, PA

The Knight Crier

Online News Day or Knight - Official news site of North Penn High School - 1340 Valley Forge Rd. Lansdale, PA

The Knight Crier

Operation Retirement beginning soon for Mrs. Giermann

Maddie Cimino
Giermann counting down the days until her retirement.

After teaching for 37 years at 3 schools and 8 different courses, Ellen Giermann is leaving her final career stat as 2024 North Penn retiree. 

“[Over my nineteen years here] I have taught Algebra 2 part B, Honors Algebra 2, Honors Precalculus, Algebra Geometry 4, Math Proficiency, Algebra Geometry 3, Honor Calculus, and AP Calculus” stated North Penn High School’s math teacher Ellen Giermann. “[Most recently] I have taught AP Calculus, Honors Algebra 2, and Algebra Geometry 4.”

Despite the wide range of courses she has taught and the passion she expresses for math, teaching high school was not Mrs. Giermann’s original plan. 

“I originally thought I wanted to teach first grade then I really liked math so much I decided to teach math,” stated Giermann. “Initially I didn’t want to teach high school because I thought it would be horrible. When I was a teenager, I thought it would be horrible to teach teenagers. But then, as I got older, I wasn’t afraid to teach teenagers and I love math. I like higher math better than elementary or middle school math,” she explained. 

Although 37 years sounds like a long time, Giermann’s relationship with her students made her time more enjoyable and taught her many things about herself. 

“I’ve enjoyed my students very much and I think they have helped me become a more patient person. I enjoy being with them every day,” explained Giermann.

These lessons didn’t just come from her time with her students. The size and diversity of North Penn opened the doors to perspective and people who also taught her. 

“North Penn is so big so I got to meet a lot of different people,” Giermann explained. “I am happy I got the opportunity to meet students from so many different backgrounds and also the teachers that are here. It has enabled me to get to know people from other cultures and nationalities and backgrounds.”

The connections that Giermann made at North Penn were different than the ones she made at her other schools and the support she got was something that made her tough job seemingly easier. 

“There is a much larger math faculty [here]. At a lot of the other schools I was in the faculty was small. A lot of [my coworkers] here are willing to help each other and support each other and that’s very nice,” Giermann stated. 

However, these connections were not only impactful for Giermann but also impactful for her colleagues. 

“Her role as a mentor has been invaluable, offering guidance, wisdom, and support as I navigated through various challenges and opportunities throughout my years here,” North Penn math teacher Randi Mcginley stated. “Beyond professional advice, she has been a trusted sounding board, always willing to lend an ear and provide thoughtful insights.”

“Mrs. Giermann’s retirement along with Mr. Shettsline and Mr. Brewster this year marks the end of an era for our math department.  Their wealth of content knowledge and experience teaching has proved to be an invaluable asset to our department,” Mcginley stated. “Their dedication, professionalism, and willingness to go above and beyond have set a standard for excellence that will be difficult to match.”

Although Giermann is leaving behind something she truly loves, there is a bright future ahead for her. 

“I still enjoy teaching, but I want to have my evenings and my weekends with my family [as] they don’t see much of me during the school year.”

“We will all greatly miss Mrs. Giermann as she moves onto the next chapter of her life, but I hope she leaves behind her extensive notes, advice on having a calm and patient outlook, and most importantly her brownie recipe,” Mcginley concluded.

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