Debbie Corliss: 'I enjoy seeing the students and just everything about what I do'
Instructional Aide, Del Rey Woods Elementary School
Records Clerk, La Mesa School
It’s fair to say generations of students have come to know Miss Debbie over the years. She’s worked for Monterey Peninsula Unified School District for 44 years in several roles at Del Rey Woods Elementary and La Mesa School.
During a recent interview, she said it all started when she first walked into her son’s school.
“I had went to Del Rey Woods School to register my son for kindergarten and just seeing all the children around and the smiling happy faces, I said this looks like a fun place to work. So I went straight downtown and applied and I got the job the next month,” Debbie said.
She started working at Del Rey Woods as an instructional aide but also ran a reading lab and taught PE for a few years.
“I’ve seen two generations. I’ve worked with children that are now parents of children that I am now seeing. And they have come up and they are surprised that I am still there and telling their children, "This is Miss Debbie. She was my PE teacher or she helped me in reading when I went to school here." And it's just a joy seeing and hearing all of that,” Debbie said.
She was able to see both her son and daughter through their elementary school years at Del Rey Woods. Later in her career, she took on an additional responsibility at La Mesa School. Now Debbie starts her day as an instructional aide at Del Rey Woods and works as the records clerk at La Mesa in the afternoon.
“I enjoy seeing the students and just everything about what I do,” Debbie said.
Debbie likes to stay busy. During her time away from work, she spends time working in her yard.
“I mean it's every single weekend unless it's pouring down rain. I paint rocks and that’s how I keep myself busy and when we’re on break I can’t stand it, I am bored,” Debbie said with a laugh.
Debbie has a 15-year-old grandson and 7-year-old granddaughter. She recently earned a recognition certificate for 40 years of service at MPUSD. Debbie reiterates that she loves what she does and doesn’t plan on retiring anytime soon.
“I haven’t considered it. I’ve been asked, “Why don’t you retire? When are you going to retire?” And my answer is always, “When I’m tired of what I’m doing, then I will retire and I am not tired of it yet,” Debbie said.