Remembering Ms. Siper

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(Photo courtesy of the Jericho School District)

The Jericho community was saddened to hear the news of the sudden passing of Cantiague Elementary School teacher Ms. Rande Siper on Oct 5.  During her career in the Jericho School District, Ms. Siper taught first and fifth grades.

First-grade teacher at Cantiague and long time friend of Ms. Siper, Ms. Rubinberg, described her as being dedicated and energetic. “She always found the good in each student,”  she said.

The two friends shared a favorite quote of “Stay in your lane.”  They would say this to each other as a way of reminding each to follow her own path and work hard not only in their career but also in their personal lives as mothers.

Jericho Superintendent Mr. Grishman always appreciated Ms. Siper’s positive attitude.  He said, “You saw that she loved being a teacher by her face.  You would walk into her classroom and her face was always bright and lit up.”

Cantiague principal Dr. Sapienza met Ms. Siper when he was a teacher at Cantiague.  They recently reconnected when he came back to Cantiague to be principal this year.  He said,  “She made the building a place where you wanted to be.  She had an infectious smile and a wonderful personality and was opening and welcoming to students and staff.”

The impact that Ms. Siper left on her students was significant and lasting.  Jericho High School sophomore Madison L. had Ms. Siper in fifth grade.  She said, “She enjoyed her class and always made sure that each of her students had fun.  It was very evident that she enjoyed her job, so she influenced me to follow a career path I would be happy in.”

Jericho senior Pranav N. who also had Ms. Siper in fifth grade said, “She was charismatic, loving and caring.  She really cared about where all of us ended up and how we felt.”

Superintendent Grishman explained that when Ms. Siper tragically passed, the school had to step in and provide staff and students with support in their grieving process. “It was an event that shook her students, colleagues, friends and family,” he said.

He added, “ They had five psychologists from other buildings in the building to talk to kids and support kids and to support the staff, and we kept that going for several days.”

Ms. Siper was someone who spread positivity to everyone around her.  She was indeed a “bright light” in many people’s lives and she will be missed dearly by everyone who she touched.  We thank her not only for the education she provided to Jericho students, but for the life lessons she taught them along the way.  Her smile will last forever.

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