O-W Teacher Ann Fitzl retires after 33 years of teaching

Nicole Rogers

O-W Teacher Ann Fitzl retires after 33 years of teaching

3 min.
June 3, 2022

Ann Fitzl, another long-time elementary/middle school teacher retires from the Owen-Withee School District after 23 years of teaching. Fitzl kindly took time out of her busy school schedule to answer some questions.

1. When did you first decide to become a teacher?

I used to “play school” in my basement with my old spelling books and math workbooks when I was in elementary school. In high school, I worked with second grade students in reading. I guess it was a calling from a very young age.

2. What sparked your interest in teaching?

My parents made education a priority in our home. My mother was the librarian at the public library and she always made sure I had a book in my hands. I knew I wanted a career that was going to make a difference and have a positive impact on the future and I couldn’t think of a better profession than teaching that would match my core values.

3. When and where did you get your teaching degrees?

I graduated from the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire with a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education in 1989. I earned my Master’s Degree in Education in 2001 from Viterbo University.

4. When and where was your first teaching job?

How long were you teaching? How long have you been at O-W? My first teaching job was in Greenwood from 1989-1996.  We moved to Door County and I taught at Gibraltar in Fish Creek from 1997-1999.  We returned to Greenwood and I began teaching at Owen-Withee in the fall of 1999. I have been teaching here for 23 years, but have taught for 33 years total.  

5. Were you involved in any extra-curricular activities, which ones and for how long?

In my 33 years of teaching I have coached volleyball, basketball, and track and field at all levels.  I have been a Student Council Advisor, Action Club Advisor, Professional Leadership Member, and on more committees than I can even remember!  There has not been a year that I have not been involved in some form of extra-curricular activity.  I enjoyed these activities because they allowed me to spend time with students outside of the classroom and offered great opportunities to collaborate with colleagues.

6. What changes have you noticed the most in teaching over the years?

Certainly technology has been a huge change! From chalkboards to smartboards, from bulky desktop computers to laptops, and, of course, cell phones. Students have answers to questions at their fingertips now! I have also seen a focus shift from learning content to learning outcomes, which has been a positive change for students as they head out into the world and need to work collaboratively to problem solve.

7. What are some of your best memories of teaching at O-W Schools?

(Read more in the June 1, 2022 print edition in stores now)

This article was orginally reported by
Nicole Rogers

Nicole Rogers, lives in Owen, WI, and is the co-editor for the Sentinel & Rural News.