Tom Fish, assistant principal at Ankeny High School in Ankeny, began his career in education as a math teacher. Mr. Fish has been responsible for instituting several programs at his school, including a "self-contained mental disabilities program serving 'Down's syndrome' and other mild disability students." In addition to classroom mainstreaming, the program offers a half-day vocational component in the community. Part of the program is geared to serve members of a nearby facility for the treatment of traumatic brain injuries. "The students have accepted and worked well with both programs through a 'Circle of Friends,'" says Mr. Fish, and he would like to provide them with ample opportunities to leave high school with "a broad core knowledge, communication skills, and critical thinking skills to be self-directed life long learners." He enthusiastically embraces the challenge to fit his own definition of a great educator as someone who projects a positive image, and who does not shy away from the role of mentor, or even of parent.
1975 University of Northern Iowa, B.A.