For 31 years, Jim Magera has taught at Havre High School, including his innovative local history and native culture classes. At the end of this school year, Magera is wrapping up his own chapter in local history and retiring.
Magera came to Havre already equipped with 13 years of teaching experience at schools in Box Elder, Chinook and Opheim.
Over the past 31 years Magera has continued teaching students about the history of their community and the culture of the people that were first here, even as state and federal education standards increase their influence over most schools curricula.
Magera said he is proud of his student’s progress and seeing them develop an appreciation of indian culture.
He is also thankful for all the support he’s received from administration and from the community he teaches about.
“I’d just like to thank the public for supporting unique programs, ” Magera said. “These are things not every school has. The principal, superintendent and the school board are very key to that. I’ve had a lot of good support. ”
The appreciation goes both ways.
“Jim has meant so much to our district, ” Havre Public Schools Super-intendent Andy Carlson said. “Anyone who has had a chance to listen to Mr. Magera knows he’s quite the storyteller. ”
Just because he’s retiring from full-time teaching doesn’t mean he’s going to stop working.
Magera said he’ll continue to substitute in Havre while working with the National Park Service at Bear Paw Battlefield in Blaine County. He even hopes to produce some DVDs on local history.
And his two signature classes will continue without him, with Kyle Fisher taking over local history and Scott Filius handling American Indian culture.