LONOKE, Ark.- A Lonoke School teacher who touched the lives of hundreds of students is retiring after 40 years.
Back in 1998, we here at KARK 4 News recognized this teacher and even gave her an award, which she still has today.
Clark is officially retiring after decades with the district.
However, with COVID-19 throwing a wrench in the big celebration, the first lady of Lonoke Ashley Reed hatched a plan to make sure Mrs. Jerri Clark was not forgotten.
“I had the crazy hair-brained idea, hey what if we got the students to put notes in Easter eggs and throw them out in her yard,” said Ashley Reed, First Lady of Lonoke.
“For the first time I guess I was speechless,” said Jerri Clark, teacher retiring after 40 years.
240 eggs were placed in Mrs. Clark’s yard.
The eggs were filled with memories and remarks from current students, past students, coworkers, parents and community members.
“It took me over two hours but I’ve read every one of them,” said Clark.
Reed said former students scattered around the United States even sent her emails with memories to go in an egg.
“Some of the parents said you were an answered prayer to both of my kids, you were the start to their education and I wouldn’t be who I am today without you,” said Reed.
Clark said she was absolutely shocked that so many people came together for her.
“I never ever dreamed that I had touched this many people,” said Clark.
However, Reed said she was not surprised because everyone loved Mrs. Clark.
“Everybody did know that she’s amazing, she’s wonderful she is definitely a life-changer,” said Clark.
As for retirement, Clark said nothing will change when it comes to the kids.
She has gone to nearly every graduation for the last 40 years to see all her kids walk across the stage and she plans to do the same with her last class.
“I felt like they were all mine, they were my personal children, I called them my children. It’s just what I do,” said Clark.