Retiring Assistant Principal John Burns, with the Cumberland County Technical Education Center tiger mascot, last Friday. Staff and students saluted the longtime educator, who retires today.

Assistant Principal John Burns spent a lot of time disciplining kids at Cumberland County Technical Education Center, but that never kept them from appreciating him.

“If you are fair, they are OK with it,” he said. “Discipline is just helping kids do better. That’s all it is.”

The Dennis Township resident, 66, has taught just about every grade level in his long career, including in Millville and Mullica Township public schools.

In the 1980s, he was a tutor to performing children in the touring cast of the Broadway show “Annie.” His students were in kindergarten to ninth grade.

“Education was very important to them,” he said of the show producers. “Wherever we went, we set up like a classroom, with a room and blackboard and all that stuff.”

Traveling around the U.S., he took the young actors and singers to museums and historical sites, he said.

Burns is retiring after 14 years in the district, and the whole school, located in Bridgeton, saluted him Friday.

“I was driving to work and a sheriff’s car pulled out in front of me with lights flashing,” he said of his escort to school.

The faculty was lined up outside, along with the honor guard from the law enforcement class.

The welding students made him a pole for a bird feeder, the carpentry class created an Adirondack chair, and the Strive class for special needs students made presentations.

“Each room did something,” he said at mid-day, with more to come.

Burns will spend more time volunteering with the Coast Guard Auxiliary, teaching boating safety, doing vessel safety exams and going on patrol in his 18-foot Bowrider, he said.

Wife Christine is a nurse with Addiction Recovery Systems, and daughter Shannon, 25, is a Temple University graduate who lives in Dennis Township and works in sales in the steel industry, he said.

Salute to Working Women Award

Cricket Frank, corporate vice president for OC Hotels and Property Management, will receive the 2014 Salute to Working Women Award from the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce, the organization recently announced.

Frank, who has had a 50-year career, is trustee and vice chairman of the board of Ocean City Community Center Association, vice president of the Ocean City Chamber, and an executive member of the Ocean City Hospitality Association.

She will be honored April 10 at a chamber luncheon at the Ocean City Yacht Club. Tickets are $25. Call 609-399-1412 or email info@oceancitychamber.com.

Stay informed! Sign up to receive top headlines delivered to your inbox each morning.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.