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Harford County Public Schools
Teacher of the Year Blog


Teacher of the Year Blog
About Amy




How many of you reading this blog are 80 years old? How many of you reading this blog are 80 years old and get up every morning at around 6am to be a substitute teacher? A week ago, the staff of John Archer School came together to celebrate an incredible person- Deb Wilkinson. Deb celebrated her 80th birthday and for those of us who know Deb, we were surprised to find out she was turning 80, given her vivacious energy. To know Deb Wilkinson is to know love, laughter, and a lot of sass! Deb worked has worked in Harford County Public Schools in some form or capacity for about 50 years. One time while substituting in my classroom, she recalled how all female teachers wore dresses to school. When I stop to consider all that Deb all the students that Deb has impacted, as well as all the changes she has witnessed in her service as an educator, I am in awe of her.
Here are some tidbits about her career in Harford County Public Schools:
  • She started at Old Post Road around 1967 as an Instructional Assistant
  • Moved to William Paca as an Instructional Assistant
  • Substituted at Joppatowne Elementary & Deerfield Elementary
  • Took time off from 1982- 1993 to open a daycare for her grandchildren and neighborhood children
  • Began working at John Archer in 1993 as an Instructional Assistant.
  • She has been substituting every week at John Archer since 1998.
So it’s fair to say that she has worked for HCPS for over 40 years (even with the 10-11 years off in the middle) and she has been working at John Archer School in some capacity for almost 25 years!

Some other fun facts about Deb:
  • Deb has 2 sons, 5 grandchildren and 2 great granddaughters who affectionately call her Gigi.
  • Her husband, Irvin Wilkinson, was a long- term principal for HCPS
  • She was born and raised in Cambridge, MD on the Eastern shore.
  • She enjoys spending time with family and friends, going out the dinner, going to the movies, shopping, watching her great granddaughters play sports, having her great granddaughters spend the night and visiting her sister and brother- in- law in Bethany Beach.
 While Deb may be getting older, her taste in men, do not. She is a die- hard country music fan and has a special place in her heart for Tim McGraw. Deb, who I affectionately refer to as Grandma, always brings a smile to my face and to so many others. She is a strong presence at John Archer School and we are so fortunate to have her as part of our school community and family. Thanks for all you do Deb! You are truly one of the many unsung heroes of Harford County Public Schools. We love you!

Special thanks to Jen Wilkinson Flurry and Jen Langrehr for your detective work. I didn’t tell Deb I was writing this blog about her.