Every day counts: William Pace
At the impressionable age of 16, William Pace decided to stop attending high school. No one called to check up on him. He was not missed. Throughout his public education experience he was repeatedly told what he could not achieve, and as he says, "I ultimately became a distraction in the eyes of my teachers." This is the VERY reason why William chose to become a teacher – to invest in the lives of students and make a real difference.
He began his career in the early 1990s at Monterey High teaching freshmen world history. He did a short stint at Seaside High School before moving to two other school districts in the mid 1990s. MPUSD was lucky enough to get him back in the late 1990s teaching a special day class at then Del Monte Elementary. Beginning in 2000, he served as a resource specialist and then social studies teacher at Colton Middle School before finding his niche in social studies at Monterey High in 2010.
"I feel strongly every moment is a teachable moment," he states unequivocally. "Every time a student seeks me out, I feel I should take the time to talk to them, find out their story and give them the gift of time." It’s about having an active caring adult who is willing to invest in the lives of students.
Even more impressive is his mission to break down entitlement barriers that closed off advanced placement (AP) classes to all but the top 10 percent. With the help of Principal Marcie Plummer, he partnered to create an open access AP program that helped MHS become a California distinguished school. William's goal is to expose students to a rigorous and structured learning environment, and give them skills they can use in life no matter what path it leads them down. In fact, that walk through his door represent a diverse mix of ethnicities and abilities. "We have students that come from transitional English the year before working alongside students at the top of their class."
Wouldn't you have loved if one of your former teachers said, "You will never look at your city the same after you take this class!" The class is Advanced Placement Human Geography and it is open to ALL students, regardless of their academic level. Next time you’re up at Monterey High, peek your head into Room 86 to see this class and students in action. #mpusdway