Keller remembers time at LCHS

by: Vivian Parker

Andrew Keller spent nine years as an assistant principal at Lee County High School. Now, he has moved on to another opportunity in education. The Jacket JournalI sat down with Dr. Keller on his last day to get his thoughts on leaving the Yellow Jackets.

Jacket Journal: The first question is why are you leaving?

Keller: I am leaving because I need to spend more time with my family and working on some health issues. So, this job has a lot of demands on it and allow someone else to come in and do this job that can do it really really well and do it better than I did while I take care of things at home.

Jacket Journal: How was it working at this school?

Keller : It’s been exciting. So, I got here in 2012 as an intern and just got hired in 2013 when I finished my internship. I’ve seen a lot of interesting things. I met a lot of  interesting people. Working at the high school is really fun to see all the things that happened. And one day, I can watch a play and play practice, I can go listen to chorus or music, I can watch someone throw  some clay on the wheel. I can watch art class and then walk through these buildings and see journalism. I can see English. I can see in the sciences and I can see all the things happening. Math, well math I don’t understand. I mean, I can see everything and I haven’t even got halfway across the campus yet. And so, I can go up the hill and learn about automotive and STEM and metal. So everyday, just observing classrooms, there are a lot of interesting teachers and kids here. 1500 kids every year and we recycle a new set of kids every year, right? Because who showed up in 9th grade is not going to be the same one in 10th grade hopefully. They’re growing, right? So it’s really fun to be here. It’s an exciting place to work. People ask, I don’t know how you do it, working with these kids. Kids are the reason why I’m here like, y’all are the most fun. Teachers are the most fun. Like, I grew up in a school. My mom was a teacher for 50 years. She just retired in 2021, so I grew up in school. School is like home. 

Jaket journal : “what is your best memory here”

Keller: One of the best memory was the first year I was here, my wife was pregnant with a girl, our first child and they were throwing me a baby shower and my wife couldn’t be there because she was at the doctor’s office at the time. They did her last ultrasound or whatever and this was in late Septemer or early October. I’m upstairs in the Career Counseling building and my wife calls and I’m surrounded around all these people. They’re giving us like diapers and cute little stuff and gifts, and cake and there’s all these people coming in and out. I’m a first year administrator. So I’ve got to learn a lot of people, but then, over the summer, people came and went. We hired some new teachers, but there were a lot of welcoming teachers here that were super supportive. As all this stuff around me is supposed to be happening, my wife calls me. So I step out of the culinary class and I take a phone call. Its my wife and she like we’re having a C-section on October the 16th at 7:00 and despite everything that happened, the fact that everyone was handing me diapers like two minute ago, it became real I was going to become a dad. Like, I finally had this moment. I was like okay, breathe. Like, I knew the minute my daughter was gonna be born. Like, I knew the day. So, before that, we didn’t know. So, now we knew and having all those people there to support me even though my wife wasn’t there with me, but finding out the exact when I was gonna become a father and being surrounded by generous welcoming people. So, that was one of my first good memories. A lot since then, but I would say if I had to pick something, that moment was pretty good. 

Jaket Journal: How has this school changed you?

Keller : When I started teaching, there was so much I didn’t know about this community because I grew up a little isolated from the community and, even as a teacher, I was still fairly isolated from the community. I got to coach at East Lee and San Lee and I was athletic director, but working here, at the biggest school in Lee County. If you say “I work at the high school,” up until recently, people knew they meant this school because this was the high school forever. So, being here at this school and being able to connect with the community more. Through all the time around here and learning the people but also getting to see where we need to do better as the educational system.

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