|Fuerst enjoys personal interaction at schools|
|Monday, April 22, 2013 7:52 AM|
DELPHOS — In order to be an educator, you have to love people — especially students. For Mark Fuerst, currently principal of both Landeck and Franklin elementaries, interaction with both adults and students is the thing he looks forward to the most in his hectic job.
“My favorite part of the day is the children and the people I work with,” he said. “We have great people at Delphos City Schools. I find myself wanting to be at both places at the same time.”
Fuerst, who attended Urbana University and OSU- Lima before obtaining his master’s from the University of Dayton, has a very extensive background as an educator.
“I began teaching fifth grade at Franklin in 1976. In 1978, I taught fifth and sixth grade at Landeck and also served as principal,” he said. “From 1984-89, I was principal at Franklin and then I was principal at Gomer until 1994. I taught eighth- grade reading and English at Jefferson Middle School until 1995, when I went back to being principal at Landeck and teaching fifth and sixth. I have enjoyed each experience.”
In 2011, Fuerst picked up dual principalships at Franklin and Landeck.
“Typically, I begin my day before 6:30 a.m. and I head for home most days by 4:15 in the afternoon,” he said. “When I’m home, I answer emails and make phone calls I couldn’t during the day.”
While Fuerst loves his job, being principal of two school buildings keeps him busy and with the upheavals caused by educational legislature, he expects to get even busier.
“Next year, with the implementation of the new teacher evaluation system, I will be spending many hours evaluating staff,” he said. “Between Franklin and Landeck, I will have 30 teachers to evaluate. That’s the thing I will find most difficult next year. It will make me less accessible to the students and parents of both buildings. I hope the parents understand that it may not always be possible to come in the building and find me available to discuss a concern they might have. I will get to the concern but it could be delayed, which may cause frustration. I’ll try to do the best I can.”
In the 37 years he’s spent enriching the lives of students in Delphos and the surrounding area, Fuerst has collected many precious memories and moments of triumph.
“Being able to be a part of the football, basketball and baseball teams over the years was a wonderful experience. When I taught eighth-grade reading and English in 1994, I was told that, due to my lack of experience teaching this age group, they would not score well on the Proficiency Tests. The eighth-grade test came back with a 92 percent. I was so happy for the students,” he said. “I have also met so many people that have influenced me throughout my career. I know that I don’t know it all, so I try to absorb from everyone.”
Fuerst and his wife, Diane, have five children: Meghan, Micah, Mark, Kevin and Alison; and five grandchildren; Maris, Gwenevere, Karlie, Charlotte and Stella.