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Jeremy Copeland

Jeremy Copeland12th Grade US History & Government

Why are you an educator? Why do you love teaching?
I am an educator, more especially, a United States History and Government educator, because a democracy endures only when its citizens understand both how the government works and the historical context in which it operates. I love teaching because it forces me to think critically about everything. It keeps me on my toes. And, while this is as cliche as it gets, teaching is very rewarding. I’ve been doing it for quite awhile, and I still get choked up every year during graduation.

What makes the School of the Future experience different from others you’ve had?
The cultural, racial, and socioeconomic diversity of SOF’s student body makes it a truly unique place. I’ve never seen such diversity any place else in New York City. I can’t imagine teaching in another school. Moreover, I’ve never worked with a group of people so passionately committed to teaching and learning.

What other activities/programs (at SOF or outside of the school) are you involved with?
I started a high school chorus and I coach the debate team. I always have my hand in something at SOF. Each year chorus has a rooftop recital we like to call “Soul Fest.” I also serve as musical director for the spring musical. Earlier in my career I was a Met Life Fellow with the Teacher’s Network Policy Institute.

What is your advice to aspiring teachers?
Don’t stay in one spot. You have to move around the classroom to keep kids engaged. And, you have to love your content area and convey that to the kids. If you don’t truly love it, they will never buy into it.