Inspired by her mother and a few good teachers throughout her education, Petra Jean Hegstad DeKrey became a dedicated teacher throughout the state of Minnesota for nearly 40 years. She was always supported by her father, who had a background in business, and her mother, who had a background in education. In 1966, she received a Bachelor of Science in German and a Bachelor of Science in elementary education from Concordia College. She eventually decided to return to school in order to bolster her skills in education, and in 1989, she received a Master of Science in elementary education from Bemidji State University. Ms. DeKrey is certified in German and elementary education and is a certified reading consultant and remedial and development reading teacher from kindergarten to 12th grade.
After obtaining her undergraduate degrees, Ms. DeKrey began her career as a second grade teacher at both Hayes Elementary School and Rice Creek Elementary School from 1966 to 1972. She then served as a chapter I reading teacher at Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig, a school in Bena, Minnesota, from 1986 to 1992. She then spent one year as a teacher of English-Reading with Rochester Public Schools before becoming the student newspaper adviser and a chapter I reading teacher at Moorhead Junior High School from 1993 to 2004. Finally, she served as an eighth grade reading teacher at Horizon Middle School until her retirement in 2005. Throughout her career, she also served as a teacher for Minnesota reading standards test prep classes and as a member of the license committee in district 152.
Outside of her practical work as a teacher, Ms. DeKrey has been civically involved with various organizations in her community. She has volunteered with various committees such as the Committee to Establish Kindergarten in the Bismarck Public School District and the Committee to Help Refugees Relocate. She has volunteered with the Boy Scouts of America, Independent School District 31 in Bemidji, and with the Sanford Medical Center. She is also a member of the auxiliary of North Country Regional Hospital, now named Sanford Health. She is also an election judge. In her spare time, Ms. DeKrey enjoys skiing, golf, music, art and travel.
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