Inside ECS: Jean Creasbaum, Instructional Leadership

After 40 years of working in the field of education, one question still resonates and guides the choices of Jean Creasbaum, “is this best for kids?” As the director of elementary instruction, Jean’s focus is working in collaboration with teams to create curriculum that is impactful and the best for kids.

As a child, Jean knew she would become a teacher – she says she could honestly never see herself doing anything besides working in education. Her journey took her from Northwest Indiana to Oregon and then back to the Elkhart area to be closer to family. She has been with Elkhart Community Schools for 15 years and is set to retire at the end of June.

Jean loves that in the field of education, she’s surrounded by the pursuit of learning – students, teachers, staff, and administrators all learn from each other and continuously strive to grow. The greatest joy Jean experiences in the schools is seeing when a student really “gets it” – and feels successful, engaged, included – and loses themselves in the happiness of learning. She also finds joy in hearing from former students and coworkers that something she said or did left a lasting impression, and sees it as an honor and responsibility as an educator.

Reflecting on her years with the district, Jean calls her coworkers “amazing,” saying “I absolutely love working here with people who have a passion for educating, and working with students and families in finding what’s best for kids. Our staff truly cares so much about our students – it’s a privilege to work with people who are so dedicated and care so much.”

Outside of the schools, Jean enjoys spending time with her grandchildren, and likes to read and garden. She also enjoys zip-lining and roller coasters.

Unlike most who count down the days to retirement, Jean sees it as sort-of surreal, and she’s made no firm plans for what happens on July 1. But she knows she’ll stay in Elkhart – the community she loves – and will stay active in the community and our schools.