Latta Public School has three faculty members who are retiring. Mrs. Julie Rauch, fifth grade teacher, Ms. Tina Wells, kindergarten teacher, and Ms. Becky Reynolds, custodian, will be retiring at the completion of this school year after many years of service in education.

Mrs. Julie Rauch has been an educator for thirty-one and a half years. Thirty-one of those years have been served at Latta Public School. While at the district, she taught second grade for one year, third grade for one year, and she has spent the last twenty-nine years teaching fifth grade.

Before coming to Latta, Mrs. Rauch taught at Roff Middle School for one semester.

Mrs. Julie Rauch earned a bachelor’s degree in education with elementary education certification from Oklahoma State University.

Her accomplishments include being awarded the 2021 Latta Teacher of the Year, receiving a 2000-2001 Apple Award, and being awarded the Dicus Teacher of the Month.

Julie has been married to her husband of thirty-five years, Ken Rauch, who works for Kerr Pumps in Sulphur, Oklahoma. Together, they have one daughter, Brooke Skokos, a 2010 Latta graduate. Brooke has a BA in counseling from East Central University, and she is currently working for the Chickasaw Nation as a family support worker. Brooke’s husband, Nick Skokos, is the director of member services at PEC. Ken and Julie also have a son, Blake Rauch, a 2014 Latta graduate. Blake earned his BA in kinesiology from ECU and has recently earned his OUSHC doctorate of physical therapy degree in 2021.

Mrs. Rauch said, “I grew up wanting to be a teacher. I spent hours playing school with dolls, stuffed animals and my nieces and nephew. I was influenced by family and teachers throughout my years as a student. My brother, Melvin Bradford, was a coach and teacher as was his wife, Cathy. I loved my elementary teachers Mrs. Morgan, Mrs. Boatright, Mrs. Prince, and Mrs. Tolliver. As I went into high school, Home Economics with Mrs. Briley made an impact, especially in the area of child development. These teachers taught with firmness, discipline, kindness, and love.”

She also stated that “building relationships with my students through Share Time has been one of my favorite things about teaching. I love getting to know a new group of fifth graders and watch them learn and grow throughout the year.”

She stated that some of her favorite memories “...were the days we left the classroom for field trips to the Oklahoma State Capitol and Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial. Another favorite was Celebrating Oklahoma. The cafeteria would make lunches in large food cans they had decorated, and we would have picnics with our classes on the playground. Covered wagons would come to school, and students would actively participate in the ways things were done in the old days. During recess, we would play games from a different time.”

Mrs. Rauch reflects that “Latta has been an amazing community in which to teach and raise my family. I am blessed to have taught with the best educators and friends from the last thirty-one years. I am thankful to Latta School, their teachers, and administrators for the education my children received growing up in the Latta School system, and to the parents and community for their support. It has been a wonderful journey.”

Ms. Tina Wells has been in education for thirty-two years. The last eight of those years have been served at Latta Public School.

Before coming to Latta, Ms. Wells was employed in Ardmore where she taught three to five year old multi-handicapped and kindergarten students. She also taught at Velma where she served in elementary special education. She then moved to Ulysses, Kansas - High Plains Educational Cooperative where she taught early childhood special education. After moving back to Ada, she was a preschool teacher. Finally, Ms. Wells worked at Latta Elementary School where she has served as a reading interventionist and kindergarten teacher.

Ms. Tina Wells earned her bachelor’s degree in 1990 and her master’s degree in 2007 from East Central University. She holds certifications in Early Childhood education and certifications for the Mentally and Physically Handicapped.

Tina is the mother of Shawna Lancaster, daughter, and Levi Wells, son. Shawna and her husband, Chad Lancaster, have two sons, Lawson and Teegan Lancaster. Levi and Kaya Wells have three children, JaCoby, Tracer, and Kyson.

Ms. Wells said that she chose to become a teacher because “[she wanted] to make a difference in the lives of children like [her] favorite teachers had done for [her]. Also, growing up with a brother who struggled to learn [had her] heart set on helping every child reach his or her full potential.” Continuing, she said, “I wanted to make a difference in the lives of my students, especially those who struggled.”

She continued by stating, “Watching the “ah ha” moments that occur during the months of February, March, and April are so rewarding. Those months of the year are my favorite. Seeing my students’ self-confidence and academic and social skills grow throughout the school year is the best reward ever. I recognize that the smallest successes are the biggest successes for so many children. Every step forward is important, no matter how big or small. Though I’ve had many positive experiences over the years, finishing out my career with my daughter as my principal has been one of the most special. It’s been an amazing gift to share this time with her.”

Ms. Becky Reynolds has worked at Latta Public School for seventeen years as a custodian.

Previously, Ms. Reynolds owned a dairy for six years, worked for a nursing home and Baptist Village for six years, and has worked other miscellaneous jobs.

Her family members include Chip, Dee Dee, and Lester.

Congratulations on your retirement from Latta Public School. Our community thanks you for your dedication to educating the future of America. 

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