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Two New Teachers Join Sandy High School

By Ty Walker

Two New Teachers Join Sandy High School

Two new teachers have joined the Sandy High School faculty this year. They recently took time out of their busy class schedules to talk with The Mountain Times.

Will Blake, a Gresham High School graduate, teaches 9th- and 10th-grade English Language Arts classes at Sandy. He spent the last two years teaching in Japan.

Kevin Frank, a Sandy High School graduate, teaches engineering to all grades, specializing in robotics. He taught in the Portland area for six years prior to returning to his alma mater.

Will Blake
Will Blake loves the humanities and is rarely at a loss for words. Inspired by his history teacher junior year at Gresham High, the impressionable young student made up his mind what he wanted to be in life: a teacher.
Blake’s history teacher made such a positive impact that he looked up to him as a role model. Like his mentor, Blake said he tries to make a connection and establish a good relationship with his 9th and 10th-grade students at Sandy High School.

“The No. 1 thing is if I can make a connection with a kid every day,” Blake said, “if I can make some sort of impact. Tell someone they’re doing a great job. Recognize something in someone. Give them confidence to move on and go to school the next day.”

Blake speaks enthusiastically about his role in building strong relationships in the classroom.
“They need teachers who are positive, teachers willing to be patient with them, and for some students, willing to push them,” he said. “I want to be whatever kind of teacher each student needs.”
Blake earned bachelor’s degrees in history and political science at the University Of Oregon, where he went on to get masters in history and education. He taught history for two years as a UO graduate educator.
He spent the past two years in Toyama, Japan, teaching English as a second language. He said he speaks Japanese well, but is not quite fluent.

In addition to teaching language arts, Blake is the assistant varsity boys basketball coach. He also announces football and volleyball games.

Blake received other job offers but chose Sandy because he has a family connection – his cousins graduated from Sandy High – and it’s close to his hometown of Gresham.

Kevin Frank
For Kevin Frank, returning to Sandy High to teach is a homecoming of sorts. Many of his former teachers are now his colleagues.

“There are coaches, teachers, and administrators in the building that I had when I was a student here,” Frank said, “They made a great impact on me, and I am thrilled at the opportunity to work with them. One major example, among multiple, is AD Garet Luebbert, who was my baseball coach.”
Frank said teaching is a great way to encourage others, help students grow and empower them to take charge of their future. He wants to create a supportive learning environment for his robotics engineering students.

“I have the wonderful opportunity to help others problem solve, to delve into real challenges and find solutions to difficult problems,” Frank said. “They get to learn how to do this in a supportive environment. I am grateful to be part of that. A willingness and desire to learn is probably the most important outcome of school, and I love being able to help foster that and help students become lifelong learners.”
Frank earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Azusa Pacific University in California. He received his masters in education, with a focus on secondary education and advanced math, from Portland State University.

Frank said he is excited to be a part of the future of the engineering program, which he is charged with helping develop.

“There are great foundations that I am excited to propel further to help bring growth and opportunities to this community,” he said.

Outside class, he plays

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