Upper Grand’s former director of education of 26 years passes away

December 9, 2021   ·   0 Comments

By Paula Brown

Martha Rogers, the former long-serving director of education for the Upper Grand District School Board (UGDSB), has passed away.  

Rogers, who retired at the end of August after holding the position for over 26 years, passed away peacefully in her home over the weekend, announced the Upper Grand District School Board on Monday (Dec. 6).

“If you had the privilege of meeting, working alongside, and knowing Dr. Martha Rogers during her almost 50 years in public education, or her lifelong community volunteer efforts, you would know that each and every day she was driven by a love for all children,” said UGDSB Chair of the Board Linda Busuttil in a statement.

“Martha devoted her life to public education and public service. You would see this in big and small ways every day, from her provincial meeting with our education stakeholders, local community partners, to the time she would take for classroom story time reading to students. Everyone had value in Martha’s eyes and ways and she had a unique way of weaving it all together for the benefit of our students, staff and communities,” said Busuttil.

Over her more than 46 years working in education, Rogers served in many roles including a Primary Consultant with the Dufferin County Board of Education, Superintendent of Program, Superintendent of Human Resources, and Director of Education for the Wellington County Board of Education.

Rogers was named director of education in 1995 following the amalgamation of the Wellington and Dufferin County Boards of Education and served until her retirement in 2021, making here the longest serving director in Ontario and one of the longest serving directors in Canada.

“Dr. Rogers will be forever remembered for how she ran the Upper Grand DSB for over 26 years as director. We are all thinking of her many family members and friends who will be feeling this loss so deeply. We know her legacy will continue to be felt for years to come across the UGDSB,” said Peter Sovran, director of education.

“We are all so very saddened to learn of this news today, especially coming so shortly after Martha’s retirement. Our entire system will be forever grateful for her contributions to our students, staff, and school communities,” said Brent McDonald, executive superintendent of education.

In November of 2020 the UGDSB announced that Rogers would be postponing her original retirement date, scheduled for the end December 2020, by seven months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Rogers stepped away as director of education in August.

Roger’s family will be holding a celebration of life for her in the New Year, said the school board.

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