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Faculty Spotlight: Keith Schoch, Middle School English

Faculty Spotlight: Keith Schoch, Middle School English

Keith Schoch joined Stuart Country Day School in the fall of 2022 after 31 years in the public school sector. Keith was a third grade teacher for nine years, a fourth grade teacher for eleven years, and a middle school ELA teacher ever since. During his career, he was recognized as the Somerset County Educator of the Year and a State of New Jersey Department of Education Exemplary Educator, and was twice named Governor’s Educator of the Year at the district level. As an educator, Keith shares his expertise and experience with other teachers at local, regional, and national workshops in subject areas including educational technology, reading, and writing. As a strong believer in the importance of continued professional development, he has completed extensive postgraduate studies in Holocaust and genocide education, diversity and equity, instructional technology, and integrated reading and writing. Keith has been involved with summer day and resident camping for the last thirty-five years, and currently provides leadership for teen travel program at LakeView Day Camp. He has presented regionally and nationally on camp-related topics including staff recruitment, staff training, and camp programming.

As a father of two girls, Keith realizes the importance of girls finding agency. He emphasizes that in the pursuit of their passions and path, girls must “Be a voice, not an echo.” In his spare time, Keith enjoys reading, films, gardening, and game nights with family.

What do you enjoy the most about your work?

What I most enjoy about my work is the lightbulb moments you see in the classroom. When a student finally grasps a concept or experiences an epiphany, their entire face lights up!

Who/what had the greatest influence on your career path?

My mother was definitely my greatest influence. She worked extensively with troubled youth, and her sincerity and selflessness easily won them over. She taught me that children live at "see level," and they don't miss a thing! You can't just phone in your feelings.

What is your best piece of advice?

Don't share a snack with middle school girls; they will swarm you like pigeons.

Tell us about your research interests and/or recent professional development.

I am a huge fan of Educamps. These open-form conferences allow educators to gather and instantaneously aggregate a schedule of workshops based upon interests, burning questions, and areas of strengths or needs. Every educator in every session is equal parts learner and teacher.

The Fun Stuff:

Favorite Food: Pizza

Favorite Song: "Mr. Blue Sky"

Hidden Talents or Skills: I can start a fire with a single match, every time. Not fun, but useful.