October Teacher Of The Month – Paul Michaelis


Fredy Castaneda, Staff Writer

Every month, a teacher at Hughson High School is chosen to be teacher of the month. The award system, implemented this year by Principal Lighthall, credits the hardworking teachers of Hughson High School. Their efforts to cultivate quality learning environments in their classrooms and enable students’ involvement in sports and clubs are essential to students’ success. Monthly recognition of these teachers began in August with Mr. Bullock who was chosen by Principal Lighthall. Mr. Bullock then chose Mrs. Newsome for September, and Mrs. Newsome chose Mr. Michaelis for October.


When asked why Mrs. Newome chose Paul Michaelis she stated, “He is brilliant. That’s why.  He took our kids to Nationals [for the academic decathlon comeptition] and we won. We beat the county and the state and won. He is amazing.  Whatever he is doing – I want him to keep doing it.”


Below is a short Q+A with Paul Michaelis:


Q- How do you feel winning teacher of the month?

A- It was very kind of Newsome to select me and I appreciate the kind words that she said about me.


Q- Do you think you deserved it?

A- If I wouldn’t have been selected, I would have understood. I think there’s plenty of other teachers that could have gotten selected. 


Q- When did you first know you wanted to be in education? 

A- When I went back to school to finish my degree and I started doing a side job (tutoring) and thought teaching would be something I liked. 


Q- Where did you go to college?

A- Primarily Stanislaus.


Q- What has your educational journey looked like?

A- Go to school for a year, worked for a year, repeat. 


Q- Where did you grow up? 

A- Mainly Livingston. 


Q- What is your best experience in the classroom? 

A- When a kid gets something that they didn’t before.


Q- What got you into teaching? 

A- I found it when I was in college and really liked it. I think teaching found me more than I found it.


Q- In what ways do you encourage creativity in the classroom? 

A- I try hard to not stifle anybody’s ideas, and when someone comes up with something wild and crazy, I see if I can make it work. 


Q- What do you like/love about teaching?

A- When a kid understands something.