Mike Counch of Haviland Elementary School.

Subject you teach: Principal/Superintendent

School: Haviland Grade School

Hometown:  Attica, KS

Education:  BSE, Oklahoma Christian College, MA, Northwestern Oklahoma State University, Superintendent licensure, Wichita State University

Family: Wife:  Cheryl Couch

Children:  Chanda(Spouse is Jared Bollman), Melanie (Spouse is Dan Bloom), and Amanda who is attending Pitt State

Interests and hobbies:  Motorcycles and woodworking

In a few sentences, explain why you decided to become an educator.

I had a strong connection with my basketball coach, Mike McGuire, as well as with several other teachers.  As I studied other professions, I found that connecting with kids was, in most cases, mutually gratifying.  Kids have changed my life in many positive ways over the years. 

Who is a teacher or professor who inspired you and how?

Mike McGuire---He was a coach who had high expectations and the lessons of “toughness” he taught prepared me for the challenges life can throw at you.

Who is someone in current events who you admire and why?

I must say that I jumped on the Tim Tebow bandwagon.  What a perfect example for our society he is.  It is obvious that he has his priorities in life figured out.

What are the greatest challenges in education today?

The greatest challenges in education today go much deeper than public officials seem to recognize.  Our culture, the pace of life, and the challenges of life have pressed down onto the shoulders of our youth.  This leads to a portion of our students being overwhelmed, and not able to function in a most productive way at school or in life.  We cannot as a society believe that we can “legislate” school improvement.  Schools still remain a mirror of our world and society.

What advice can you offer for someone who wants to go into education?

If you have a passion to serve kids and grow them emotionally, socially, and academically the field of education needs you. 

What teaching moment is most memorable?

Knowing you made a difference for a lifetime in a child.