Teacher of the Week: Terry Giardini- East High - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Teacher of the Week: Terry Giardini- East High

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ROCKFORD (WREX) -

Walking down the hallway of East High School, every step is a memory for teacher Terry Giardini. 

"I came here shortly after the Earth cooled!" Giardini laughed. 

A long tie to the school, his parents went to East along with him and all of his brothers. 

He's a member of the 1974 state championship football team and a graduate of the class of 1975. He bleeds red and black. 

But as much as East runs through Terry's veins, his heart beats for the students that make it up. 

A special education teacher, he has an old school approach to teaching. Giardini said, "I talk to them straight up. I do not flower my words. You shape up or you ship out. You make up your mind." 

A tough approach but one students admire. 

Junior Demarco Young said, "He always teaches us something that we can use in life. He teaches us something that you can actually use when you grow up." 

It's those life lessons that have made a difference in students lives like Young, lessons that will stick with him. 

Young said, "He's gonna give me something to take on to college... he's a great influence on my life." 

Next year is Terry's last year at East before he retires. 

"It's time. Time to let someone younger take over," Giardini said. 

A lifetime spent inside East High School but he's had an impact that reaches far beyond these halls. 

"I walk down the hallway I hear things being taught, I hear kids engaging in things," said Giardini. "I'm like, 'wow, this is a great place to be'." 

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