At the end of last school year, after Mr. Hagen’s retirement and Mr. Jozokos’s appointment to his new position as principal, BHS worked to find someone to fulfill Jozokos’s previous position as assistant principal L-Z (and administrator for world language). This year working beside our beloved assistant principal A-K, Mrs. Noe, we welcomed Casey Roop to the Bedford High School family.
Prior to his new position this year, Mr. Roop was teacher at Londonderry High School for eleven years who taught history, social studies, economics, and other subjects. Mr. Roop elaborates on his first impression of BHS: “It’s a great atmosphere. Everyone’s been really welcoming. It’s [BHS] obviously a high-performing school here, and I think we have a good sense of community.”
Since the size of Londonderry High School is similar to BHS’s population, Mr. Roop is finding that he is “used to the dynamic” that this student population size creates, and is finding it rather “comfortable to acclimate” to the community. While Londonderry is also a high-performing school with high expectations and a good community like Bedford, he has noticed, “the expectations at Bedford with IB are just a little bit higher, and I think it’s a little bit harder as far as academic rigor.” And while Bedford has only two assistant principals, Londonderry has four.
Mr. Roop is also finding that the new job within an entirely new school is a “learning curve” regarding “learning how to step out of my teacher shoes to some extent” and “stepping into a different role.” Mr. Roop also explains that he is adapting to working with kids, parents, and staff members in a different way now as a first-time assistant principal instead of a teacher.
Regardless of the challenges that apply to starting this new job, Mr. Roop speaks of his new position very highly:
“I hit a home run. When I was applying for administration jobs, there were a few openings. I thought ‘hey Bedford that’d be really cool,’ and I was really excited when I was hired. It’s been really great.”
Mr. Roops goals include first having a good rapport with kids. He states, “I’ve really loved working with kids in general, and that’s why I got into education. I find it [working with kids] to be fun, and even solving tough problems I find to be satisfying and rewarding.” Another one of Mr. Roops goals is to learn the supervisory role of the job and do his professional best for the teachers and the community. Mr. Roop’s last goal is “just trying to bring a lot of positive energy to the school, and keep it running. There’s a lot of good things happening here, and hopefully I can add something to it.”
Along with the positive and vibrant atmosphere, Mr. Roop believes that one of the best aspects about BHS is the managed time model. He explains that students react very will with the freedom that is given within the application of managed time:
“It really creates what I feel to be sort of an open atmosphere and not restrictive. While the five or ten percent of people who might have a problem with it, the vast majority don’t, and it works well. I think that that really leads to a foundation for a good community. There’s a well-oiled machine here and I will try not to take away from it but instead, try to add to it.”
Before Mr. Roop became a teacher, he grew up in Rochester, New York. There, in high school, he was introduced to an inspiring history teacher who became one of Mr. Roop’s role models. Mr. Roop describes this history teacher as “a wild man of a teacher” who “was just nuts about history,” and “lit” up Mr. Roops interest in history and education. Mr. Roop also played basketball and pursued martial arts during high school, and even attended an international Martial Arts competition in Japan where he learned about hard work and sacrifice. Later, Mr. Roop went to college in Rochester, and found his way to New Hampshire for his masters degree at SNHU.
Today, Mr. Roop still practices basketball, even periodically with the basketball-players of the BHS staff in the morning, and is passionate about music. Previously, Mr. Roop played live gigs and had a band that created original music and performed cover tunes. While he plays a lot of guitar, having learned in college, he also keeps a guitar in his office at school. In addition to basketball and music, in his free time he enjoys being a husband and spending time with his one year old son.
Some of Mr. Roop’s icons include historical figures such as Muhammad Ali, a former American heavyweight boxer champion, for “standing up for his convictions, even sacrificing his career, and being brave enough to stand up for what he believed in,” and Mohandas Ghandi, leader of India’s non-violent independence movement, for “really standing behind being good to people and trying to bring about peaceful things and positive growth.” One of his other icons is Paul McCartney, a famous English singer-songwriter known for being in the Beatles, because of his contribution to rock and roll. Mr. Roop elaborates, “Paul McCartney has been constantly reinventing himself. He just embodies rock and roll for me.”
Despite his passion for music and his interests in other areas, Mr. Roop has always wanted to be a teacher. He remembers when he was around eleven years old when he was given the opportunity to teach for the first time in martial arts: “I didn’t know what I was doing, but it gave me such confidence with working with people. As much as I was helping them, it was was also helping me. After that, I just always found success and satisfaction from teaching.”
Mr. Roop then, throughout his search for a career in high school and college, found himself coming back to the satisfaction he received from teaching.
Today, Mr. Roop finds himself within the walls of Bedford High School, and BHS is so glad to have him. He is to make many lasting relationships with the community and community members. Welcome, Mr. Roop, to our unique home and family!