Palo Alto High School will see shifts in staff positions next school year, with some teachers taking up new positions while leaving old ones.
Geometry and calculus teacher Suzanne Antink will leave her current teaching position to become the district’s Mathematics Common Core State Standards Teacher on Special Assignment (TOSA). Antink is eager to work with Palo Alto Unified School District’s secondary schools on curriculum alignment and continuity throughout the grades.
“I’m very excited about [working as a TOSA next year] because Common Core is actually what we’ve been thinking about for years and years, and it’s the way we’ve been teaching,” Antink said. “[But] to a certain extent we need to do a little more, so the students really understand what they’re doing.”
Antink will miss interacting with students after 38 years of teaching, but looks forward to working with teachers.
“I’ll miss the day-to-day [interactions] with the students,” Antink said. “[Their] smiling faces are the best thing of my day. When I have a bad day I can come to school and just be as happy as a bug. So I’ll miss that. But I’ll get to work with the teachers, and the teachers are amazing.”
In addition, Paly will have a new yearbook and journalism teacher, Brian Wilson, who will also help supervise The Campanile, C Magazine, The Viking Magazine and photography classes. According to an article published by the Oakland Press, Wilson has taught English and journalism at Waterford Kettering High School in Oakland since 1997, and received the Teacher of the Year award in 2013.
Science teacher and Instructional Supervisor Josh Bloom will switch over to Social Emotional Learning TOSA. Science teacher Kelli Hagen will take over as head of the science department.
Bloom will continue to teach astronomy and physics classes, but will mainly focus on implementing stress-relieving programs at Paly, which could include mindfulness programs through avenues like advisory and physical education (PE).
The other TOSA positions will remain unchanged. Social studies teacher Eric Bloom, English teacher Kindel Launer, Spanish teacher Emily Garrison, science teacher Mindy Steiner and journalism teacher Paul Hoeprich will retain their respective positions as School Climate TOSA, Professional Learning Community (PLC) TOSA, Western Association of Schools and Colleges/PLC TOSA, Digital Learning TOSA and Technology Specialist TOSA.
PE teacher Peter Diepenbrock will return to the basketball courts, taking on the position of boys varsity basketball head coach. Diepenbrock will continue to instruct PE.
These staff changes follow math teacher Kathi Bowers’s recent switch to the position of Athletic Director.
The administration is still looking to fill the positions of world language instructional supervisor, chemistry instructor, special education instructor and varsity wrestling coach.