November 17, 2020

Committed to Doing Right for Students

I was a high school English and journalism teacher, and I coached wrestling. I taught writing almost exclusively and loved it. After five years of doing that, I was recruited to go back to my hometown to become the head wrestling coach. The only teaching job open was middle school computer science. I was only one class shy of the endorsement, so I got that and taught middle school computer science for six years. It’s one of those things that at the time didn’t seem like a big deal, or perhaps it was even a little sad for me because I loved teaching writing and felt like I was just hitting my stride. Looking back, though, it’s really one of those happy coincidences that helped change my life and my thinking.

“I’m excited about the future of education, but committed to making sure that we develop world-class public education, because I see that as the battleground for the soul of our democracy.”

I had every 6th-, 7th-, and 8th-grader for nine weeks every year in our rotation courses. I took over a Commodore 64 lab and was able to build an Apple II and eventually Mac lab. I treated the kids like adults, and we constructed ways to use technology to solve real problems. I was teaching the full Clarisworks suite, along with Turtle Logo programming and a fair amount of gaming.

– Dr. Ken Wallace, Superintendent of Maine Township High School District 207 and Founder of the Chicago Coaching Center


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