VonBank retiring from daycare after 42 years

By: 
Patrick Fisher, The New Prague Times

Karen VonBank, back left, who received the Scott County Daycare Provider of the Year recently, is retiring in June after more than 42 years. She is pictured with her current group of daycare children. (Patrick Fisher Photo)

On June 26, Karen VonBank will be bringing to a close more than 42 years of being a daycare provider. She actually came to the decision back in 2018, in April of that year she informed the families of the children she was caring for that she would be retiring.

Before her retirement, she received on Thursday, April 25, the Scott County Daycare Provider of the Year Award. It is the third time she has been honored, her first time to receive the award was in 1990 and the second was in 2005.

“I really love it. I have had wonderful parents in my more than 40 years and nice neighbors to help me out,” said VonBank. She noted that her age is a factor in her deciding to retire. After she retires, she will probably find something to do, work on her lawn or garden. She also has four children and 14 grandchildren from ages 3 to 21.

She did start out as a teacher, but when her daughter Amy was about two months old someone asked if she would watch her children. From there she became involved in daycare. When the youngest of her four children was old enough she asked herself in 1984 if she wanted to go back to teaching. “I think I’m going to continue in daycare,” was the answer she gave. She also noted that in more than 40 years she hasn’t been closed more than 20 days.

She also had a career working as a carrier for the Belle Plaine Post Office, but after seven years she weighed the pros and cons of that job. Also a factor was that her husband, Steve, was sick. She decided to leave that for her daycare work and to aid Steve, who was diagnosed with cancer. He died five years ago.

She has many memories as a daycare provider, including....

To see more on this story pick up the May 2, 2019 print edition of The New Prague Times. 

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