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Long-time educator retiring
Dolores Mallard was Long HS principal
Dr. Mallard hugs a fellow teacher
Dr. Dolores Mallard gave and received many hugs last week at the graduation ceremony for Long County High School. The principal retired as the principal from the school after being a part of the LC school system since 1974. - photo by Photo by Mike Riddle
In 1974, People magazine sold its first issue, President Richard Nixon resigned from office amid the Watergate scandal and a young lady, Dolores Mallard, began her teaching career in Long County.
Thirty-six years later, that young lady is hanging up her erasers and retiring as the principal of Long County High School.  
“It’s hard to believe it’s been that long,” Mallard said. “The time has flown by.”
The retiring educator said teaching is the only job she ever considered.
“I think it was something that I was genetically inclined to do. My grandmother was a teacher, my mother. And it’s what I always wanted to do. I always saw how they cared for students and were such good nurturers. It’s just what I was destined to do.”
When the retiring principal speaks of her mother and grandmother, she speaks in an awe-struck tone, but when you take into account, some of the relationships that were involved in, especially Mallard’s grandmother, it is easy to see why the reverence is there,
“My grandmother was a Tuskegee graduate. She had no money to go to school on and she had to work the whole time she was in school,” Mallard said. “She was a great lady and knew Booker T. Washington and his wife.”
According to Mallard, her grandmother was a student of Margaret Washington and worked for her, cleaning her home.
Mallard says her family inspired her at an early age, but that many teachers contributed to her aspirations.
“I started in the classroom as a science teacher and I had many teachers who directed me in that direction and helped me reach my early goals as a teacher.”
In Mallard’s years as an educator, she says the classroom was her first love and where she felt the most fulfilled
“Teaching in the classroom was my favorite part of being an educator, seeing a light bulb go off in a student who was struggling...teaching them how to be successful and then seeing them become confident from that success, that was the most rewarding part of being a teacher,” Mallard said.
She said that during her career many things have changed, some for good, some for bad, but she said that the most dramatic change hasn’t been good.
“We have less parental involvement today than we did when I first started. And that’s sad because with all we have in the world today the kids really need that parental support, today more than ever, but unfortunately its just not there.”
She added, “Also when it comes to being academically successful there is a direct correlation between success and parental involvement. Those good parents, who do support their kids and do get involved, are the parents to the kids that in most cases are going to be success stories in school.”
This past week Mallard took part in her last graduation ceremony at Long County High School as an educator, but plans to stay involved.
According to Mallard, she will be working part-time in Long County in the area of student support services, focusing on areas like attendance and home-based testing. She also says that she plans to teach at the college level, where she possibly could influence future teachers.
Having said that Mallard offered advice to those considering going into the education field.
“First of all being a teacher can be the most rewarding job that there is, but you need to make sure its what you want to do, you have to love children to be a good teacher. If you have that love, you will have that drive to go the extra mile to help that student be successful.”
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