“Mustangs Ahead” is asking teachers “Why do you teach?” This segment by Paige Venuto is about LRHS social science teacher Dave Frantz.
I have always enjoyed learning and always enjoyed my teachers. I had great role models I wanted to emulate, especially in high school and college. Becoming a teacher was a bit of an illumination process for me – originally, I went to college to be a business major and didn’t like the courses I was taking my second year of college such as accounting, business statistics, and marketing. The following year I changed my major to education and had in my mind that I would just try it out – but after that first class where I had to observe a first-grade classroom, I was hooked.
I really had no other job before teaching – I’ve been a teacher all my entire life since I was 22 years of age. I have been teaching for 37 years, and have taught: physical science, Earth science, chemistry, critical thinking, geography, American history, world history, International Relations, psychology, and finally the past 10 years teaching AP Psychology.
The good parts are the daily interaction with my students, and knowing that what I am teaching means something to me, and I appreciate the challenge of helping it mean something to my students. I also enjoy seeing students grow in their confidence in my rather rigorous academic class, and I am truly blessed when I see that they are enjoying themselves as we work so hard on mastering the concepts and applications involved in a college level course.
I also enjoy the camaraderie of my fellow teachers, of learning from them and also sharing some things I’ve learned with them as well. I am retiring this year and while I am very much looking forward to some time off, it is indeed a bittersweet parting as I have been with Lakewood Ranch High School since it started 19 years ago.
The bad parts of my job include the less exciting requirements of the position – paperwork, meetings, and of course doing most of my grading at home. By far the hardest part of my job is not necessarily related to teaching but coaching (golf) as well – the enormous of time that I’ve spent away from my family during my 30-year coaching career.