New Teacher: Mr. Stump, Science


Harrison Otto, Editor in Chief


Q: How many years have you been teaching in the school district?

A: This is my twentieth year in the Boyertown School District. I spent the past nineteen years teaching seventh grade science at Junior High West.

Q: What were you doing before teaching? And why did you start teaching in the first place?

A: I’ve held many jobs prior to beginning my teaching career. They include work as a summer camp counselor, school bus driver, farm worker, maintenance mechanic, police dispatcher, volunteer firefighter, and an enlistment in the military.

Q: What was your reason for coming from the Junior High West to BASH?

A: I was transferred to BASH due to the need for teachers with biology certification. With the recent changes as a result of the Keystone exams and the eventual move to the academy school plan, a need arose for more biology sections.

Q: What subject are you teaching this year? How do you plan to make this subject exiting to students?

A: This year I am teaching four sections of Academic Biology. I hope that my students can develop an appreciation for how important biology is in our lives. Almost daily I read, or hear of research going on in biology that is dramatically changing how we view and interact with our environment and our understanding of how our bodies work. I am also supervising one section of Project Based Assessment, which an alternative to the Keystone Exam.

Q: Have you ever taught at the high school level before?

A: Yes, prior to taking my first permanent teaching position, I spent a semester substitute teaching in several Berks County middle and high schools. In my first permanent teaching assignment, I spent three years teaching biology at Reading High School prior to coming to Boyertown Junior High West.

Q: Even though it is early in the year, do you think you enjoy teaching high-schoolers or middle-schoolers more? Why?

A: So far I am really enjoying working with high school students. I had a great time with seventh graders, but there is something about high school students that I can very much relate too. When I was in high school I struggled with the worries of what I wanted to do with my future and staying out of trouble.

Q: Do you have any goals or projects you hope to accomplish while at BASH? If so, what are they, and how do you plan to accomplish them?

A: Well, it is a bit early to tell, but I am very excited about the coming BASH changes to the academy school plan. I am really hoping that allows the staff to develop some interesting elective courses in science, especially in biology.

Q: What is one thing that you are going to miss the most about West?

A: I already miss some of my colleagues. After working with folks for nineteen years, you get to know people, their kids, their favorite teams, and the places they enjoy going out to; you certainly build an attachment with the good people you work with.

Q: Do you have any hobbies outside of school? What are you passionate about?

A: Outside of school I enjoy spending time with my family and doing things outdoors. I especially enjoy rock climbing, kayaking, and hiking. If all else fails, I like to at least get out for a good walk.

Q: Do you love teaching? Why?

A: Yes, I really do. I sometimes wonder what it would be like if I had followed other career paths, but I come into school each day looking forward to the day. If you want to stay young and fresh, hang out with young and fresh people, not a bunch of old farts. My students help me do that every day.