A Wonderful Life

Teachers at a rural school in Rwanda 2009.
A deaf orphan after the Hutu/Tutsi genocide.

A Lifelong Journey

Recent photo.

by Rena Schine

Well, I just couldn’t resist the opportunity to chat with you all…it is like “old home week” reading about Ron Abate and Ralph Burke and Mary Randolph!  Keeping in step with the rest of you “not-retired retirees”, I have continued to fight the good fight for children…but wait…I am now sitting on the other side of the table.  I have been working for 12 years with CACLD as an Education Advocate for children with learning disabilities helping the families navigate through the special education system with all its devious twists and turns….and complaining when the school psychologist’s test reports are not ready in time (knowing that mine were sometimes not written for months after the PPT!!) (Hope Dr. Guth isn’t on line)

 I left the terrific McKinley School with all its mold and mildew in 1993 and went to work for two years in Tanzania at the International School of Tanganyika with all its dusty pot-holed streets and lack of electricity….it was wonderful!  I returned to work with Dick Leadem for one year at Holland Hill, and then off again overseas to work at the American International School of Israel for 4 years where I tried valiantly to learn Hebrew to no avail!

 Like “Pi” in the new movie, The Life of Pi, I was exposed to samplings of many religions and cultures but after my return to the states I took a trek to find the Gorillas in Rwanda. There I found that they, the Gorillas, have a much more peaceful take on life than humans from any of the religions or cultures I experienced.  They live and let live…on a diet of veggies…grooming the rain forest like good keepers of the planet.  If only we could go back to our origins.

 Those days at Fairfield with my School Psychologist, Special Education, and Deaf Education buddies were so rich and fulfilling I don’t know where to begin reminiscing.  This "blog" endeavor is a terrific idea for bringing back so many fond memories and giving us a chance to reflect on where we were and whether or not we’ve learned anything since….thank you Paula Sweeley.


Rena Schine, Ph.D.

School Psychologist/Advocate



Mina Arena 17.06.2022 14:40

Are you currently working in CT. If so I would like to use your education advocate services for our 8 year son

Rena Schine 17.06.2022 18:00

Hi, Yes I am still working in CT but am cutting back. Feel free to contact me so we can discuss your concerns and determine if I can help.

Ron Abate 03.01.2014 17:07

Hi Rena,
Happy to see that you are enjoying an active and productive life in your retirement. I have fond memories of you and other psychologists at Fairfield.

june mackenzie 01.03.2013 02:15

Rena Rena Rena There is so much of you, isn't there? You always were a complex intellect with a dear heart and a sense of humor as big as your serious side. TY

Mary Randolph 25.02.2013 20:40

Hi Rena,
Great to hear about all your adventures and global contributions. It's clear you've "learned a whole lot since..." and will undoubtedly continue!

Joe Sabol 24.02.2013 21:55

So glad to hear from you, Rena. You look great! You are accomplishing "FANTASTIC" deeds. You've had a positive impact on my life. Fondly, Joe Sabol

Joanie 16.02.2013 21:29

Hi Rena,....Thanks so much for helping sooooooo many different people in so many different ways...I am soooo proud of you!!!!!!!! Blessings, Joan Kleinknecht

Latest comments

17.06 | 18:00

Hi, Yes I am still working in CT but am cutting back. Feel free to contact ...

17.06 | 14:40

Are you currently working in CT. If so I would like to use your education ...

15.06 | 20:43

Our battles were fierce but always cordial and a handshake from...

15.06 | 19:03

Yes, Colleen, I remember him as a true gentleman who led with respect...