Fred Press

Manager, Academy Development

I knew in 7th grade that I would be a high school teacher, but my dad wasn’t happy with that choice; “Teachers don’t make no money”, he said.  My mother, a school clerk, opined that I’d probably make a good principal since I spent so much time in the principal’s office. Miss. E, my Latin and English teacher became my mentor. She encouraged my desire to be a teacher and planted the seeds that I would cultivate and nurture into a successful and satisfying career in education.  Years later, as a high school teacher, I became a mentor to those students I refer to as “good bad kids”. I spent 35 years in urban high schools, 25 years teaching.  My most memorable experience was 33 years teaching ESL, 3 hours a night, 3 nights a week to foreign adults.  I took that position at $5.00 an hour to supplement my $4,000 teacher salary.  My father was right; teachers didn’t make a lot back then.  It was a labor of love for someone who loves teaching.