Niagara Gazette — Robert DiFrancesco has been at it for 44 years, educating youngsters and encouraging them to succeed in life.
At some point during this school year, he'll step down from his current position, principal at Niagara Catholic Junior/Senior High School, in favor of a little rest and relaxation.
He said he has no regrets about the decision and enjoyed every minute of his career, which spanned tenures in both LaSalle High School and Niagara Catholic.
"For me, this was the perfect career," he said. "Being able to watch children grow up and succeed has been rewarding. Not exactly financially rewarding, but I always look at it like parents are sending the most important parts of their lives to me. Niagara Falls doesn't have much richness to it, but our kids are priceless."
There's about five things he accomplished in his career which he'll forever look back on with a smile. And it all starts with Niagara Catholic's four-day school week instituted a few years back.
Beginning in September 2009, the school switched to a four-day instruction week, leaving students and staff with a three-day weekend, including Mondays.
At the time, DiFrancesco said he thought the decision would allow students more opportunities outside the school while allowing administrators to avoid dealing with the overwhelming majority of Monday holidays.
Now, he said he's happy the school made the change. He's also going to look back fondly on helping the private school through its tough economic situation around the same time, as well as helping coordinate cooperation between his school and Niagara University, starting a partnership with Mount St. Mary's hospital in Lewiston and the most recent achievement, integrating seventh and eighth grades into the high school building.
"Those would be the things which stick out the most," he said. "I'll miss it. I can say I don't regret what I've done in my career and I'm glad I got the opportunity to help these kids."