‘Where my heart was’: BCSC administrator retires after more than 30 years in education

For many students, the end of the school year is a time for getting rid of textbooks, throwing away assignments and racing out the school doors as fast as possible.

A young Teresa Heiny, however, jumped at the chance to take home samples of teacher’s edition books and assignment books. And during the summer, she would set up school at the backyard picnic table and teach her neighbors.

“I think I always knew I was going to be a teacher,” she said.

Now, after over 30 years of working in education, Heiny is retiring from her role as assistant superintendent of human resources at the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp. She’ll finish up her work in this role the end of June, with former Title Services Director Gina Pleak as her successor.

This was Heiny’s 33rd year working in education. Of that time, she said only one year — spent teaching third grade in southeast Georgia — was outside of BCSC.

While Heiny always knew she wanted to be a teacher, she did consider being a physical therapist for a time and initially planned to study that field in college. However, as it turned out, her roommate was an elementary education major.

“I ended up helping her do stuff in the evening for her classes, and I just realized that that’s where my heart was,” she said.

Prior to joining BCSC, Heiny was working in accounting for a company in Indianapolis. When an opening arose for a Taylorsville Elementary Academic Challenge teacher, BCSC learned about Heiny and her credentials from the placement office at Ball State University.

She was invited to come down to an interview and said she “fell in love” with the teachers she met, who ended up being wonderful friends. She began working in the Taylorsville position in 1989.

Since that time, Heiny has worn a lot of different hats in the school corporation. At Taylorsville, she taught fourth/fifth/sixth grade Academic Challenge, then various combinations of grades fourth, fifth and sixth.

About 10 years after joining Taylorsville, Heiny became the assistant principal of Schmitt Elementary and was later promoted to principal in the early 2000s. She was then hired as the director of elementary education in 2012. In early 2015, Heiny was named as the new assistant superintendent of human resources, replacing the retiring Linda DeClue.

Heiny said her main duty in this position is “the hiring and retention of teachers and staff.”

However, she also noted, “We do more than just hire teachers and staff members. There’s a lot of things that go on behind the scenes.”

Heiny’s other duties include working on evaluations and compliance requirements, as well as being the expulsion examiner and attendance officer when these roles are needed. She also participates in school cabinet conversations and works with staff and teachers.

That, in fact, is Heiny’s favorite part of her job — the people.

“We have the most amazing staff,” she said. “I just can’t say that enough. We ask a lot of our staff, a lot of our teachers. And they rise to the occasion every time. Last year was a prime example.”

One of the highlights of her time at BCSC, in recent years, has been the establishment of the new Teacher of the Year Award, presented for the first time in 2020 to Central Middle School teacher Mindy Summers.

“Like I said, we just have an extraordinary staff,” Heiny said. “And we don’t get a chance to recognize them as much as we ought to. And so just the ability to recognize our staff for what they do, every day of the year — and during the summer, when we think they’re not working. They are.”

For Heiny, the summer brings an end to her time in education and a move to retirement, which is “a little scary.”

“This is what I’ve done for 33 years,” she explained. “What am I going to do? But I have a list of things I want to get done and things I want to do. And I’ll be busy, I’m sure.”

Some of her possible future plans include returning to being a Book Buddy, participating in volunteer work and traveling.

While COVID restrictions pose an obstacle to the latter pursuit, she noted that, “There’s a lot of the United States I haven’t seen yet.”

As her time in education draws to an end, Heiny said she is grateful to the community and the team at BCSC.

“BCSC is a unique school district,” she said. “And we have a strong community that’s an advocate for the schools. And that just makes everyone’s job a lot easier.”

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”About Teresa Heiny” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

Age: 61

City of residence: Columbus

Hometown: Fortville, Ind.


  • Bachelor’s in elementary education from Ball State University
  • Master’s in elementary education with an endorsement in gifted and talented from Butler University
  • Education Specialist Degree in educational leadership from Ball State University

Career overview:

  • Started her teaching career in third grade at Pierce County Schools in Blackshear, Ga.
  • Taught at Taylorsville Elementary. Fourth/fifth/sixth grade Academic Challenge, then various combinations of grades fourth, fifth and sixth.
  • Assistant Principal at Schmitt Elementary
  • Principal at Schmitt Elementary
  • Director of Elementary Education
  • Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources

Professional associations: Delta Kappa Gamma, a professional teacher’s organization whose mission is "to promote professional and personal growth of women educators and excellence in education."

Community involvement and associations: Alzheimer’s Association

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According to information shared by BCSC, there are eight certified staff retirees for the 2020-21 school year, as of June 15:

  • Robert "Robin" Cain — North, C4 industrial tech
  • Michelle Critzer — Parkside, kindergarten
  • Jeff Friedgood — North, PE/health
  • Julie Giggy — Rockcreek, second grade
  • Teresa Heiny — Administrative building, assistant superintendent of human resources
  • Anthony Romanski — Parkside, special education
  • Susan Finke Scott — North, assistant principal
  • Jan Shultz — Southside, second grade

As of June 15, there are 21 support staff retirees for the 2020-21 school year:

  • Beverly Asbury — Rockcreek, custodian
  • Robert Bell — East, HS lead day custodian
  • Rita Brodfuehrer — Fodrea, media technology specialis.
  • Robin Campbell — McDowell, Restart teacher’s assistant
  • Sandra Carr — Southside, cafeteria assistant
  • Kenneth Cave — Plumber
  • Bruce Dailey — Bus driver
  • Patricia Dailey — Bus driver
  • Sherry Grimes — Southside, special education teacher’s assistant
  • Deborah Harmon — Parkside, media technology specialist
  • Pamela Hartley — Clifty Creek, cafeteria assistant
  • Carol Heitman — North, secondary cafeteria manager
  • Talara Henry — Rockcreek, media technology specialist
  • Virginia Huntsman — Bus driver
  • Hedwig Jordan — Bus monitor EC program
  • Jane Karriger — Smith, Title 1 teacher’s assistant
  • Pam Maschino — Rockcreek, custodian
  • Guy Nentrup — Grounds
  • David Parker — Mt. Healthy, elementary lead custodian
  • Randall Surface — BCSC project manager
  • Janie McCrory — Schmitt, elementary cafeteria manager