New+communications+teacher+excited+to+coach+engaged+debate+students

By Anna Owsley

New communications teacher excited to coach engaged debate students

Sohail Jouya encouraged by the school's community of support

JagWire: What are you most excited for about your new job?

Sohail Jouya: A lot of my passion is in competitive academics, and we have a very young program here that is incredibly eager. That sounds like a good amount of fun for me. I’ve rebuilt a number of programs, but I think this one – by far – has the most potential in terms of the amount of students who are really engaged and really want to learn and be more competitive. 

JW: What are you looking forward to about being at Mill Valley?

SJ: There’s obviously a very strong culture and community support here, and I am very impressed by it. The amount of parent engagement is something I haven’t quite seen to this degree, and I think that speaks to the amount of pride that’s here at this school. And the amount of interest in which parents are intimately involved with their kids’ education … I find that very telling about the kind of students that are here. If there are things people feel like aren’t available to them, they make it happen, and I find that very encouraging. 

JW: What led you to a career in teaching and your specific subject area?

SJ: I was not an education major; I never thought I would ever be a teacher. I dropped out of law school and I came back to the Kansas City area. It all started because my mother was very angry about an old bunch of high school [debate] trophies I had laying around, and she [told me] “you have to get rid of these.” There’s an Urban Debate League in Kansas City, and one of the things they do is [fund debate programs for] students who are in districts that typically can’t fund debate on their own and [they] apparently repurpose trophies. I emailed them because I had a bunch to give them and they were like ‘can you come down on Tuesday? We have a tournament, and we desperately need judges.’ I judged, and [the debaters] were awful. It was very clear they had no instruction at all, so I volunteered my time. In about two weeks, I ended up taking over the [Lincoln College Preparatory Academy debate] program in that area, and it changed my life forever. I really felt like I found my calling, so I skipped out on making any more plans to attend a different law school. I got into teaching, got my certification and found myself in the building full time.

JW: Give us a fun fact about yourself to help us get to know.

SJ: I have this weird, secret ambition to be a comedian; I always thought it would be hilarious if I had the glut of additional money and free time. I would love to see the time out of my life in which I actually took [being a comedian] seriously – which I don’t think I could do – but I think it would be really fun. It sounds somewhat arrogant, but I do think I’m quite funny, [so] I would want to do that with my life. If I find another 20 years to kill, I’ll try it. It would not go well. I would probably sleep on a lot of couches and not do much. It’s also one of the professions that pays less than teaching, so of course I would want to pursue that.

 

(Visited 939 times, 1 visits today)

Mill Valley News • Copyright 2023 • FLEX WordPress Theme by SNOLog in

Comments (0)

Mill Valley News intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and must be approved by a moderator to ensure that they meet these standards. Mill Valley News does not allow anonymous comments, and Mill Valley News requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All Mill Valley News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *