By Carolyn Lee
The Imperial Republican
Longtime industrial arts teacher Lynn Rinehart is retiring from Chase County Schools (CCS) this spring and plans to move to North Platte.
The 58-year old has taught industrial arts, as well as drivers’ education, at CCS. When he began teaching in Imperial in 1987, he also coached freshman basketball, later coaching junior high football and junior and senior high wrestling.
Rinehart said he especially enjoyed coaching high school wrestling for 13 years.
The Cozad native graduated from Cozad High School in 1974, worked for a year at Paulsen Incorporated, then attended Chadron State College for a year.
He returned to Paulsen’s, a construction company, and then was employed by Sperry New-Holland in Lexington for three years.
Returning to Chadron State, he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in industrial arts with drivers’ education and coaching endorsements in 1982.
Later, he added a Masters of Vocational Education degree in 1985 and an administrative endorsement in 2008.
Rinehart began his teaching career when he also began an industrial arts program in Genoa. After two years he moved to Alliance where he taught industrial arts for one year.
Following that he worked at Chadron Job Corps for two years, teaching building management and forest firefighting.
At CCS, Rinehart has also been the Curriculum Director, introducing a new math program, and “helping teachers evaluate different programs and making sure they’re aligned to standards.”
Rinehart has enjoyed working with students, “seeing how kids grow from seventh grade until they graduate. Then they come back to visit” and he sees how they have changed and matured.
Rinehart thinks “the perception of education as a whole” has changed since he began teaching.
“It used to be teachers were considered professionals. Now sometimes they don’t have the support they used to have, all the way around,” he said.
He said education systems across the country are concerned with being sued and “forget to ask what’s best for the students in the long run.”
Rinehart said teachers used to have tools with which to control classrooms, but those have now been taken away, while the teachers have more responsibilities.
After Rinehart and wife Teresa sell their Imperial home they will move to North Platte, where Teresa has taught special education at Adams Middle School for four years.
Rinehart is employed by Farm Bureau Insurance as a personal property adjustor and is also self-employed to make home inspections. He may also substitute teach.
The Rineharts have two children—Lucas of McCook and Lynsey of Omaha.
Rinehart was involved in the Imperial Park Board, Imperial Jaycees and managed the swimming pool one year.
He and Teresa are also members of the Frenchman Valley Riders motorcycle club