Richman relives her glory days

By Lisa Lessig '14

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  School, although still the same in many ways, has changed in other ways since 1964. Debbie Richman who attended West Deptford High School has been a gym teacher at West Deptford High school for 23 years. She has many memories about the school and the kids in it in from the years 1964 to 1970.

Richman did not consider herself to be a popular person. She was captain of the cheerleaders, but was very shy. It wasn’t until her class voted her Best All Around that she had thought of herself as popular. When she got the news that she had been voted Best All Around, she was so happy, she cried.

She was an all around good kid. “I was a good student. I had A’s and B’s, and was in the top 10 of my class. I played softball. I was in the Math Honors Society, Student Council, and did cheerleading,” Richman said.

Richman did not always want to be a physical education teacher here at West Deptford High School. Instead, she wanted to be an elementary school teacher. She did want to work at this school because she loved it as a teenager. “My time here was always happy,” said Richman.

She grew up in West Deptford her whole life. The kids in school changed from when she had attended the high school. “The kids didn’t act up as much, and not nearly as many kids used bad language,” said Richmond.

Back in the 60s, they would fit all the grades into the gym, and everyone would stand up and sing the schools song. “You could hear everyone scream, and you could feel the pride everyone had in the school” said Richman.

According to Richman, there have been many other changes to the school since 1970:

  • We had no weight room
  • The Art room was the library.
  • The Guidance Office was where the Attendance Office is now.
  • Mr. Graham’s room was used for the administrators for discipline and attendance.
  • We had a choir room and a band room. There were storage closets in the band hallway and a large art room.
  • We didn’t have an Auxiliary Gym.
  • The health rooms had a folding door that opened for wrestling practice.
  • Our school was a Junior and Senior High. There was no Middle School.
  • We didn’t have a video tech room. There was a metal shop in that area.
  • We had a sewing room in addition to the Foods room.
  • The auditorium had been redone.
  • My cheerleading squad had practice in the gym hallway.
  • We did not have girls’ soccer.
  • The trophy cases were in the front of the school not back by the Athletic Office. That area did not exist.
  • There was just grass where the library is located now.
  • There was no Guidance Suite.

If Richman could change anything about the school today, she would have the kids accept differences and not make fun of someone because they are different. “I’m always her if someone needs a helping hand and needs to talk about their problems,” said Richman.

Mrs. Murnane, the computer lab aide, attended West Deptford High School from 1968-1971 and remembers Richman as a teenager.

“She cared as deeply for West Deptford High School back then, as she does today” said Murnane.

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Richman relives her glory days