By: Alexa Foodim
September represents new beginnings. New faces, new notebooks, new teachers, new classes, and a fresh start overwhelm the building. One notable beginning is that of Mr. Hantzschel as he takes on the role of Assistant Principal of High School East. I had the opportunity to interview Mr. Hantzschel and ask him some questions about himself and his new role.
Thunderbird: First, let’s get to know you with a few brief questions about your interests. What are your favorite sports teams?
Mr. Hantzschel: Yankees, Jets, and Nebraska Football
Tb: Nice variety! How about your favorite food?
Mr. H: Chicken fingers
Tb: Sounds delicious! Favorite movie?
Mr. H: All of the President’s Men
Tb: Ok. And your favorite vacation spot?
Mr. H: Montauk
Tb: This is an important one – favorite Netflix/Hulu/Amazon video binge watch?
Mr. H: Last Man Standing
Tb: It’s always fun to get to know our teachers, and administrators, as people too! Speaking of administration, how has your transition been from teacher to assistant principal been so far?
Mr. H: It’s been fun and definitely an experience. I’ve had to learn a lot, especially about my new roles and responsibilities. At the same time, it has been very meaningful. I have gotten to work with people that I haven’t worked with before. Overall, it has been very positive.
Tb: What did you teach before you became an assistant principal? How will you bring the lessons you learned in the classroom into the assistant principal role?
Mr. H: Over the course of my time here at High School East, I taught global history, government, economics, algebra, and English. I think that rapport with students is crucial, including understanding where they are coming from and their perspective. One thing that I know is important, especially in this role, is remembering the classroom role and remembering the idea that students learn in different ways and not every student is the same. Students are individuals that need to be treated as individuals and need to learn as individuals.
Tb: What are some of your goals for the year?
Mr. H: Some of my goals are to keep learning, to collaborate with my co-workers, and to continue the rich history of HSE.
Tb: What are your thoughts on bringing technology into the classroom?
Mr. Hantzschel: I think technology is important. I have a Masters in Educational Technology, so I think it’s a tool and an asset to the classroom. However, I think, at the same time, students need to learn to use technology responsibly. I think that over time technology in the classroom will increase since it is such a valuable tool.
Tb: What advice do you have for the students of HSE?
Mr. H: Some advice for the students is to work hard, to focus, and to take advantage of the opportunities at HSE. I think a lot of students take for granted the clubs, activities, and experiences here. I think that students need to realize that they are blessed and have privileges here in the respect that other students and other districts do not. Overall, take advantage of what you have and do your best.
Be sure to look for Mr. Hantzschel around the building this year and say hello if you get a chance. The Thunderbird is so excited to see Mr. Hantzschel flourish in his new role, and we wish him all the best!
Photo courtesy of Alexa Foodim