Pratt to Retire After 23 Years in Nonnewaug’s Science Department


courtesy of Nadine Pratt

Longtime Nonnewaug science teacher Nadine Pratt will retire at the end of this school year.

Fiona Gengenbach, Reporter

WOODBURY — Nadine Pratt has always made a positive impact on everyone she meets, especially her students and coworkers.  

Nonnewaug has to prepare itself for next year due to the upcoming retirement of Pratt, the longtime AP Biology teacher.

“Mrs. Pratt is very knowledgeable about everything she teaches and it shows,” said AP Biology student Mallory Tomkalski. “She really works with you to help you as much as she can, and she’s very supportive.”

Not only has Pratt made such a positive impact on her students, but she’s affected coworkers as well.

“Mrs. Pratt and I have taught the same classes for years, mostly integrated science,” said science department head Chris York. “She brings unique ideas to the group and helps keep science interesting and fresh for the students. In the classroom she is fair, straight-forward and works as hard as anyone in the building. Students show her respect because they can tell how hard she works.”

Pratt has also taught many subjects and started many science programs for our Nonnewaug community.

“Mrs. Pratt has been a key member of the department for 23 years and we hired her after my first year,” said York. “She taught biology and anatomy for years and started the forensics program nearly 20 years ago. She does a fantastic job with the AP Biology class and has great scores every year. I have always thought that AP Biology is the toughest AP in the school, and she handles it with ease.”

With Pratt no longer here after this school year, there are serious shoes to fill. Fellow science teacher of 21 years Toby Denman will be taking over AP Biology. 

“I am looking forward to some of the lab work,” said Denman. “It will be interesting to investigate some of the topics with students in ways I haven’t had the opportunity to do before.”

Not only is Pratt an asset to our Nonnewaug science community, but she also is an avid golfer.

“Outside of just being a constant, steady colleague who we can always count on for her leadership, Mrs. Pratt is also a pretty good golfer,” said Denman. “We have played a few times together after school.”

Pratt won’t just be relaxing with her newfound freedom.

“My husband and I are planning on traveling — the Galapagos Islands are on the list — play golf and spend time with our granddaughter. I also want to do some volunteer work,” said Pratt. 

Pratt won’t miss the early mornings and late nights having to grade papers, but she will miss all the memories and relationships she has built within the Nonnewaug community.

“I have so many favorite memories of Nonnewaug; it is hard to pick one,” said Pratt. “I have enjoyed seeing the change in freshman students I have had by the time they walk down the aisle at graduation as they move on to the next chapter of their lives.”

Nonnewaug wishes Pratt the best with her retirement — students and staff will miss her and the impact she made on Nonnewaug.