This is my FIFTEENTH(!) year as an educator. I spent my first thirteen years at Geraldton Composite High School teaching mostly English, but also Visual Arts, Computer Studies, and Indigenous Studies courses. I then spend a year as the Vice-Principal of B.A. Parker Public School and Geraldton Composite High School. While technically the VP of both schools, I was responsible for the day-to-day operation and administration of B.A. Parker, a K-8 school with about 130 students. I loved the challenges and the adventures and decided that pursuing full-time administration was the path I wanted to take. In May 2019 I was offered the role of Permanent Principal at Marathon High School where, almost 20 years ago, I graduated. Awesome!
Before my career in Geraldton and the Municipality of Greenstone I spent some time supply teaching in Marathon, Ontario, where I was born and raised. I went to university at the University of Ottawa where I met my wife, Megan. Following Ottawa I spent a year in Thunder Bay at Lakehead University where I received a Bachelor of Education degree. I hold subject specialist qualifications in English and Visual Arts in addition to my principal qualifications with the Ontario College of Teachers.
I’m lucky to be a dad to Tessa, (April 2016) and I also have an awesome cat, (Othello) and a great dog, (Layla) in my family. We had to say goodbye to our oldest cat, Winston, in the Spring of 2016.
My philosophy of education focuses on students at the heart of every school decision. During my career I have gained an excellent understanding of board and ministry initiatives, including Growing Success, the K-12 School Effectiveness Framework, creating a sense of belonging and how it affects performance and motivation, and Conditions for Learning. My interests focus on the balance between academics and well-being, restorative practices, the promotion of literacy, the creation of positive school culture, and outdoor classrooms.
In terms of teaching, I love working with the English language. Teaching English gives me the opportunity to see the creativity of my students as well as assist them with a skill they will need throughout their lives. I really enjoy reading in class and see it as an important part of the learning process. I also like to focus on developing writing skills in class so we do a fair amount of that regardless of the course. We do a great deal of inquiry-based learning, where I provide guidance and students take control. We use learning goals and success criteria to create expectations and descriptive feedback to help students achieve the highest expectations. Students in my classes use technology to create, collaborate, and share.
The arts are fun because they allow for expression in an entirely different sense. I’m far from the greatest artist ever, but I love experimenting with different styles and media. You don’t learn if you don’t get your hands dirty!
I am very interested in the productive and effective use of integrated educational technologies, cross-curricular and cross-panel learning opportunities, school leadership, community-building, and inquiry education.
If you’re wondering, I love photography. I also enjoy the outdoors and exploring the area around Greenstone. Random bush road adventures in my vehicle are not uncommon. I am practising the art of being the area’s worst fisherman on land, in a boat or on ice. My favourite place in the world is Neys Provincial Park, on Lake Superior just west of Marathon, Ontario.
Well, that about sums it up. If you have something else you want to know about myself or what I teach please feel free to e-mail me.