Current Math Department Head Neil Basu will serve as the interim Grade 9 Dean for next year. Basu will cover for the 2017-18 school year because the current Grade 11 dean, Renee Green is going on maternity leave next year. Green will return to her position of dean when she gets back.
In the past, Basu has worked on the scheduling with Assistant Principal Karen Bonthrone, giving him some experience in academic advising. The experience with the scheduling is one reason Principal Jack Phillips chose him for the position.
Philips believes that Basu is a great person for the job and that the change is not “anything he can’t handle.”
While Basu is dean he wants to keep things similar to how Green lead things so it is easy for her to come back with a brand new class. He has met with her and talked about what the position is like and what he should do in the following year. “I don’t think I’m going in unprepared,” he said.
Basu also said that he will take note of anything new that is incorporated or changed so that when Green returns it is a lot easier for her to transition back in.
Basu wants to “start the off on the right foot” so the ninth graders come into high school ready. He said that he wants to make them aware of extra-curricular activities that are available as he wants them to get involved in school activities even though they are new to high school.
Managing parent and student interactions more than in his current job is an opportunity Basu anticipates will differ greatly from his current post. “[I’m excited to] …try my hand at a new opportunity to work with students, and parents, and teachers in terms of shaping the culture and curriculum of the school,” he said.
However, Basu is going to miss the atmosphere of his classes. “I love teaching and I love being in the classroom,” he said.
Not being in the classroom as much next year is going to be a difficult change for him because at the moment he teaches four classes and next year he would only teach one or two. “I love the math pod and the feel of it during conference time and lunch when kids are at the boards in the classrooms studying for tests,” he said.
While Basu is a dean there will be a substitute math teacher to cover for him. He plans to go back to the math department after his year as the Grade 9 Dean.