By Julie Johansen
Emery County School District (ECSD) Elementary Supervisor Ralph Worthen and Secondary Supervisor Jed Jensen will both be retiring at the end of July. The replacement for the elementary supervisor was chosen on Wednesday, April 3, and the new secondary supervisor was announced on Wednesday, April 10. J.R. Jones, principal at Book Cliff Elementary, will become the new elementary supervisor. Yvonne Jensen, principal at Canyon View Middle School, will move into the secondary supervisor position.
Worthen has worked with the Emery School District for 30 years. He began his career as an upper grade teacher at Castle Dale Elementary, a position he held for 13 years before being chosen as principal at the same elementary school for another 13 years. Worthen has served at the district office for the past four years.
Some of Worthen’s memories of his employment with the school district include Castle Dale Elementary being recognized as one of two nationally-recognized Blue Ribbon Schools in Utah. This award was given due to an increase in math scores and maintaining the higher scores for a number of years. During these years, Worthen worked part-time as a sixth grade teacher and the other as principal. Two other things he feels very good about are the increase of a part-time principal at Book Cliff Elementary to full time as well as full-day kindergarten. These changes have been made during his time at the district office.
Worthen is a native of Emery County, growing up in Ferron where he and his wife Loretta now reside. They are the parents of five children, three boys and two girls, all of whom reside in Utah. They also have 16 grandchildren. He has lived in Ferron all his life except for time serving on missions to Montana, Wyoming and Idaho.
He hopes to spend some of his retirement time with a group of bike riders named the Temple Riders. “While I can still hold my bike up and enjoy it,” he said.
Jensen, has been with the district for 35 years. He began teaching at Mont Harmon in Price and remained there for two years before moving to Canyon View Middle School as a teacher for eight years. Then, he moved to Emery High as a teacher. From there, he served at Ferron Elementary as principal for two years and then moved to the district office as elementary supervisor for 12 years. He has spent the past four years as secondary supervisor.
He said that his most enjoyable and satisfactory years were the years he spent working with students, especially at the high school. At the district office, he appreciated the camaraderie with the staff. “It was nice to come to work with this great group,” he said.
Jensen grew up in Cleveland and except for the time at school and on a mission to Arizona, he has lived there all his life. In fact, he and his wife Theresa live only 1/2 block from where he grew up. He boasts that he has four fantastic children: Brandi, Marc, Chase and Lyndi. Three of them also live in Emery County. His wife retired a couple of years ago and has been busy with grandchildren, with whom he plans to spend a lot of his retired time. He also hopes to fulfill a mission for his church, if health permits.