About Me

Hi all!
I’m in my 9th year as an educator.  I am an assistant principal and athletic director at Hedgesville High School in West Virginia.  I have three beautiful girls at home with one more on the way.

Making connections, via social media, to some amazing school administrators provided the vision for school leadership that I hold today.  My passion is supporting the adults and students to make school a better place to learn.  I’ve been blogging since 2013.  What began as a way to record the journey of learning, has turned into much more.  I connected to other educators via social media in 2013 and it transformed my professional growth and development.  Much of my blog now represents evidence of the shifts in practice that dominated my math classroom for the last 4 years.  I have lead the #wvedchat community that meets, chats, supports, and learns together since 2013.  You can use the search feature on the right side of my blog on desktop view.  Search any relevant topic to see what I’ve shared via my blog.   The rest of this section has appeared on my blog since day 1.

Much of my rapport with students was developed years ago.  I began my career at a great facility – Pressley Ridge at White Oak.  That is the juvenile detention facility located in Mountwood Park in Wood County, WV.  I worked there quite a bit during my first year of teaching through 2009-2010.  I learned a lot and enjoyed working with the staff and students there.  I would not be the teacher I am today without the support and experience gained from Pressley Ridge.  Working with juvenile offenders has produced a higher level of tolerance, empathy, and love for students.  It has increased the need to seek out students’ burdens and adapt my classroom to better meet the needs of my students.  I could share story after story about how an experience with a student at Pressley Ridge has changed my career.

You will find I probably do a lot of things different in my class than what you have come to expect.  I think you’ll enjoy it.  This blog has become way more than what I originally intended.  You’ll find some of my writing is directed towards my classroom, but sometimes my writing is directed towards other educators.  Creating this blog wasn’t a frivolous choice, nor was it an attempt to feed my own ego.  I hope that I can model for my students, parents, and other teachers how my decisions are intended to impact my students.  I hope that I get to share my heart.  I choose to stay connected and continue blogging not to self-promote or to feel that I’m any better than anyone else.  I simply want to express what my connections have done to revive my career and my heart for my students.


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6 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Thank you so much for blogging. I’ve just finished reading your post on: Help Wanted: Change.
    Brilliant! and wow!! You put the rest of us to shame. (I know that’s not your intention)

    However, the long list of things you have done this year, alone, in order to improve as an educator, has given me a host of ideas. I’m encouraged to tackle my lack of imagination – had no practical, hands on ideas, least of all encouragement to know where to start. So my heartfelt thanks to you.

    Also, to let you know that I have posted your post on Change to my former colleagues at the University of Andrés Bello in Chile, including the administration. We’re somewhat starved for reflective educators.

    • Kate, I’m so humbled that you shared my blog with such an audience! Thanks so much. I hope it continues to benefit you and your colleagues. I’m honored to help when I can.

  2. Derek, I think your blog is fantastic! WOW! You put a lot of work into this blog and the information within is valuable. Thanks for sharing it with me. I will continue to explore it in coming days.

    • Thanks! I agree. Plus, for some reason, you can’t see links, they aren’t highlighted, color changed.. anything.
      I’ll switch it up soon.

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