Ms. Haffley

The voice of Ms. Haffley has been heard at the Veteran’s Day assembly for the past several years by students and staff alike, but after 27 years at Coronado (30 years in education total), Ms. Haffley has decided to try retirement on and see if it fits! Over her career, she’s taught classes including Government, Sociology, U.S. History, Colorado History, Global Studies, PE/Health, and Biology. She mentioned the strong impact made by some of her colleagues like Dr. Donald Moore, Steve Cervi, Steven Espinosa, and Jamie Risberg.

Some of her favorite memories of her time here at Coronado all connect back to the students and the extracurriculars she sponsored: “I was the STUCO adviser for 5 years, and that allowed me to work in a different capacity with kids. The heartbeat of the school ran through my room.” Ms. Haffley specifically mentioned that “the homecoming parade was always a special time. It is something completely unique to Coronado and the west side.” In addition to STUCO, she also sponsored the bowling and UNO clubs.

Ms. Haffley, an avid lover of sports, also coached many over the years including girls’ basketball, swimming, softball, and soccer. She fondly remembered when she was coaching and the Coronado basketball team went to state for 3 consecutive years, “getting to the Final Four twice and the Elite Eight once.” She also mentioned that one of her most fun memories coaching softball “was having the girls slide after a rain storm on a muddy field. I’ve never seen so many kids covered in mud and loving it!”

Ms. Haffley reflected on some of the major changes in her nearly 30 years at Coronado: “When I started at Coronado, it was like a family. The staff…looked out for one another. The kids were much more interested in having conversations with each other and participating in school activities…Now, kids have a large reliance on cell phones/social media and that seems to increase each year, influencing their lives and not always in a good way. Covid [also] made things difficult, and I don’t believe we have come close to recovering from that socially.” Despite some of the negatives, Ms. Haffley remained optimistic about the Coronado community: “We are all trying to get better and to do right by each other. I hope that doesn’t change.”

Ms. Haffley has many cherished memories from her years teaching, but a few of special significance were being asked to speak at graduation by the class of 2004 and taking students to Washington D.C., Gettysburg, Philadelphia, and New York City in 2005 and 2012. One poignant memory happened at the Lincoln Memorial: “Several kids…were in complete awe. One even said, ‘It really does exist!’ Many of those kids [had] never been out of Colorado, so to see them in our nation’s capital and their reactions was very special to me.”

She was also very proud of her ability to bring in several guest speakers over the years, including a 102-year-old Pearl Harbor survivor, a Japanese internment survivor, WWII POWs (both German and Japanese), and a survivor of Auschwitz: “It’s important for kids to learn history from those who ‘did’ it.”

When asked if she had any parting wisdom for students or staff, Ms. Haffley said, “Don’t sweat the small stuff, and it’s all small stuff.” She also emphasized that “everyone is fighting a battle and you may not know anything about it, so treat people as you would want to be treated.” She added that when feelings are bubbling up, “take a deep breath and exhale. You’d be surprised how much that helps you to…calm and relax.”

Ms. Haffley was one of our longest tenured teachers at Coronado the past couple of years, but even though she’s leaving, she made it clear: “Once a Cougar, always a Cougar!” We will miss her next year!