Teacher Feature: Mary Beth Bauer

Mary Beth Bauer teaches advanced placement biology, AP envrionmental science, pre-AP chemistry and regular chemistry at Our Lady of the Hills Regional Catholic High School and was selected as this week's "Teacher Feature."

Mary Beth Bauer

School: Our Lady of the Hills High School.

Subject taught: Advanced placement biology, AP environmental science, pre-AP chemistry and regular chemistry.

Years teaching: 35 years.

Years at school/district: Seven years.

College: I have a bachelor of science in range science from Texas A&M University.

Reason you chose a career in education: All I ever thought I wanted to do was be a teacher, up through seventh grade. Then I changed my mind, and majored in range science. But while I was getting my degree a professor assigned me to teach a lab, and I fell in love with the teaching part again.

Most enjoyable part of teaching: Interacting with the kids, and getting them interested in the things I'm passionate about. There are students who don't like science until they try it.

Hardest part of teaching: First, not reaching ever kid, but also fighting the technology of phones and social media they are hooked into.

If I could change one thing in education it would be: Public school curriculum is too driven by the standardized tests. We lose student scientists because we can't teach a fun lab unless it's "on the test."

Other duties at school: I sponsor both the National Honor Society and the Science Club, and I coach the 4-H Plant Identification Team.

Hobbies/interests: We have a ranch, which takes up a lot of my time, and we love to travel to national parks as a family, and particularly on mother-daughter trips. I also read mysteries.

Personal history: I was born and raised in El Paso, graduating from Loretto Academy in 1980. Then I went to A&M. While I was there Stephen Bauer and I were both on the Plant Identification Team, and he asked me to go see "The Man from Snowy River." It's still one of my favorite movies, even besides being our first date. We got married in 1985, and his first job was in Menard. I taught middle school special education, because it was that or go hungry. Stephen didn't like his job, so after a year he took a new position in Kerrville. I taught at Ingram ISD for 27 years, then, seven years ago, came here to OLH. We own two businesses, Double L Feed and Back 40, and I also do some of the bookwork for them. Our kids both graduated from A&M. Our son, Lance, works for Beefmaster Breeders United, in Boerne. Our daughter, Leah Polly, and her husband Josh, live in Lake Dallas, where she teaches middle-school English.

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