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Retired music teacher continues to change lives

When you walk into Corinna Summerset’s 3rd grade classroom at DeGrazia Elementary School on any given Wednesday, you can feel the excitement! The room is filled with inspiration, fun, learning, and enrichment; all because of a beloved volunteer, John McDivitt.

After serving twenty-five years as a committed, passionate music teacher in the Marana Unified School District, John McDivitt, decided it was time to retire. Upon learning of his retirement, Corinna Summerset, 3rd grade teacher, quickly approached her friend and colleague and asked him to consider volunteering in her classroom. He eagerly agreed and that was the beginning of his now eleven year adventure as a volunteer! 

Each and every Wednesday, Mr. McDivitt arrives to her class of eager third grade students where the level of excitement and anticipation is evident. Eyes are bright and smiles are large when he enters the classroom. Students sit quietly as he reads to them from William J. Bennett’s Book of Virtues or continues the story of Uncle Wiggily.  Yet, as soon as he finishes any particular story, hands are raised and the conversation begins about life, morals, making good choices, and doing the right thing. No student sits quietly during this time….the discussion is real, it is fun, it is respectful, and it is inspiring!

Awesome, funny, happy, amazing, interesting, positive, glad, ideas, inspiring, outstanding and unique, are just a few of the many words students use to describe their friend and mentor - Mr. McDivitt.

Third grader, Alexandra states, “He is so creative and has so many great ideas and we are so inspired by him.” “I love the stories he reads from the Book of Virtues and he teaches really good morals and lessons to learn in life,” states Dominic. Charlotte says, “He is so funny and teaches us spelling and we play games and have fun but still learn so much.”

“I have known Mr. McDivitt for a very long time and it has been such a privilege to have him volunteer in my classroom every week these past years”, says Ms. Summersett. “He brings a wealth of knowledge into the classroom and makes such a difference for my students. He is always so joyful and can make student’s laugh as they learn important life lessons.”

Thank you John McDivitt for your continued years of service and for your dedication to continue to make a difference in the lives of those around you!

IMAGE: Mr. McDivitt reads to class. IMAGE: Mr. McDivitt reads to class. IMAGE: Mr. McDivitt with Ms. Summerset.