Draucikas grew up in Newark, NJ where she graduated from Our Lady of Good Counsel High School. In 1973, she received her bachelor's degree from Rider University with a double major in Education and Spanish and was hired that September to teach 6th grade at Franklin School. Draucikas continued her studies and earned a Masters Degree in Advanced Elementary Education from Kean University in 1976, with another certification in ESL.
Draucikas’s own experience as a very young child who learned two languages helped to shape her appreciation for various cultures and languages, as well as an understanding of the challenges children face when they are introduced to an unfamiliar language and a new country. She appreciates the values and richness of culture that each of her students brought into the classroom while helping them learn English. For Draucikas, teaching bilingual education was more than just a job - it was a lifelong passion.
Draucikas was involved in a number of activities throughout her years at Franklin. She co-chaired the School Improvement Committee and coordinated the Bi-Lingual Needs Assessment. She also helped students plant flowers and trees in the Franklin Garden, and was one of two photographers for the one and only issue of the Franklin Yearbook. One particularly notable memory was organizing the school’s time capsule for the 100th anniversary of Franklin School, which was scheduled to be opened in 25 years. Little did she know that she would also be part of the capsule reopening ceremony 25 years later with her Franklin family and community!
Josephine Draucikas is proud to have taught over 2,000 students who have gone on to successful careers in a variety of fields including the military, education, medicine and law. Most importantly, they became responsible citizens of our world. Our Franklin family - the administration, teachers, staff, students and their families are resilient and will continue to soar to success. The heart of Franklin School stays with you forever.