Beloved LEMS teacher Sandra Johnson retires

Brandie Collins
Posted 5/31/24

LUSK - Lusk Elementary/Middle School teacher Sandra Johnson has officially retired after over 25 years of teaching. Johnson told the Herald that she has always wanted to teach.

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Beloved LEMS teacher Sandra Johnson retires

Posted

LUSK - Lusk Elementary/Middle School teacher Sandra Johnson has officially retired after over 25 years of teaching. Johnson told the Herald that she has always wanted to teach.

 “I always wanted to go into teaching, and I liked kids,” Johnson said. “I especially wanted to coach. I was very active in sports when I was growing up. It just seemed like one of those things that aligned with teaching.”

 Johnson became a certified coach in volleyball, basketball and track.

Johnson grew up south of Torrington near Huntly on her family farm. Johnson graduated from the University of Wyoming in 1980. After that, she began her career with teaching in Guernsey, Wyoming. She taught two years in Guernsey and coached volleyball. Johnson then went to South East, Wyoming, and worked there for two years.

It was there that she met and married her husband, Artie. In 1985, she came to Niobrara County.

Johnson then taught in Lance Creek, Wyoming. At the time, it was a one-room school with only had two employees. She taught there for a year. After having children, she decided to stay on the ranch. Once her three children were older, she started coaching again at LEMS.

Johnson has taught in both middle school and high school. She was the head coach for volleyball and track for several years. Johnson, in later years, became the head coach coached for the track team. Some of her fondest memories of teaching are from her time in Lance Creek.

“Linda Shutts was the cook, bus driver and my teacher’s aid,” Johnson said. So, it was her and I and seven kids. I was pregnant with my son Will at the time. I was teaching music and PE (Physical Education) and handling recess duty. It was just fun out there.”

All three of her sons attended school in Lance Creek, too.

Johnson and her son Trent still have their family ranch in Northern Niobrara County. They also have a farm in Lingle, Wyoming. Johnson doesn’t really know what she’ll plan to do since she has retired. She plans on still working for the Niobrara County School District #1 as a substitute teacher and may still coach track. She stills has her parents, who she plans to help from time to time. She also plans to spend time with her granddaughters in Casper, Wyoming.

“The years passed by really fast. It seems like I just got here and it’s over,” Johnson said. “The time coaching and building relationships with the kids is what was really important.”

Johnson was given a rocking chair from her class and she was celebrated at the 2024 Niobrara County High School graduation as well.

“It’s been nice, everybody has been so kind,” Johnson said.