Over winter break the administration had to scramble to find a replacement for long time English teacher and yearbook adviser Les Klein, who resigned after 18 years for personal reasons. They chose English Department Head Joe Koetters and first year teacher Chris Thompson to teach the English classes and art teacher Chelsea Dean to take over the yearbook.
Koetters took on Klein’s ninth grade English I class, a course he was planning on teaching next year; Thompson, who initially was working part-time, became full-time by adding tenth grade American Literature to his schedule.
Thompson said the hardest part of teaching another course is time management.
“I have to prep for three classes including my eleventh grade section, so it has been tough. But, I have two really great sections, so I am enjoying myself,” he said.
This is the first time Koetters has taught ninth grade at Marlborough.
“Even though I’ve had to change gears, I’m having fun with the ninth graders,” Koetters said. “They’re a good group.”
Dean, who made the biggest change, said she is finding her way.
“It’s not a class that I would have ever considered teaching, but now that I’m in that role, it seems like a good fit for me because of my background in art, design, editing text and photography,” she said.
With deadlines quickly approaching, the yearbook staff has been working around the clock – even frequenting sessions over winter break – to stay on track.
“It’s hard to come into a dynamic that’s already been set, but we’re figuring things out with what works and what doesn’t work,” Dean said.
Co-editor-in-chief Becca Friedland ’10 said the transition hasn’t been easy.
“We’ve been a bit discombobulated without Klein, and the first deadline coming back from break was definitely a challenge,” Friedland said.
One of the three co-editor-in-chiefs, Imani Clark ’11, believes the staff and Dean can make a great finished product.
“I’ve really felt the stress pile on, but Ms. Dean has been really helpful and it has been really unifying for the whole staff. We know even though she’s [Klein] gone, we can pull it off,” said Clark.
Sophomore English teacher Mark Krewatch said Klein will be missed, but the school is adjusting. “Les was a big help to me since I got here. I learned from her, and I know she loved this job deeply,” he said, “but Chris is both an experienced pro and a guy who brings in a fresh perspective from another top prep school.”