You can recognize his smile-inducing laugh from down the hallway, and his cheerful demeanor grants him a warm place among students and staff. Lindell Palmer, Creative Writing and AP Literature teacher, has been teaching at Fauquier High School for 13 years, and this year will be his last.
“It was a difficult and bittersweet decision for me. I love the community, (…) leaving [is] really tough for me,” Palmer said. He explained he is leaving for a job at Loudon High School for a number of other reasons.
“I’m trying to streamline my life because I have many things happening in Fairfax, so it makes my life easier,” Palmer said.
He is an inspiration for many, and students such as senior Dakota Miller are especially sad to see him go. Miller has been in Palmer’s class for the entirety of his high school career, and his sister had him in past years.
“I have nothing but good things to say about him; he’s been a life coach to a bunch of guys in my class, “ Miller said.
Palmer is also a father figure for many. “He’s taught me many things [like] just getting through high school in general. Whether it’s personal issues or school issues, he’s always there for you, and that’s the important thing,” Miller said.
Senior Hazel McCulla has been in Palmer’s Creative Writing and English classes, and his effect on her is profound.
“He really helped me when I was depressed and struggling,” McCulla said. “I think he’s just a very supportive teacher and very willing to help his students.” McCulla added, “H’s taught me to stay true to what I believe in and to stay true to what I wanted to be.”
Many students say Palmer taught them many valuable lessons, however, Palmer thinks he learns from them as well. “As a teacher, I obviously know the impact I have on students lives; but at the same time, I don’t think they realize that they teach us, the teachers,” Palmer said.
Senior Julia Fork had Palmer all four years of high school and worked on the Literacy Magazine with him after school.
“When I first went into his classroom I did not want to be there, but his personality and the way he handles things made me turn around completely, and that was my favorite class,” Fork said.
His effect on the student body even reached those who never took his class. Senior Fleischer Payne never took Palmer’s classes, however, he spent a lot of time in homeroom with him. “He’s a great teacher, one of the best teachers in the school, [and] he’s always there for his students,” Payne said.
Palmer’s effect on the student body is not invisible to him, and he acknowledges the special connections he has with his students. “I am here to educate, but everyone wants to be seen and heard, so I do my best to see and hear my students,” Palmer said. “I want them to learn, but I also want to know who they are. So when you invite that to your classroom, you make connections.”
Even though students and staff will miss him, he will also miss FHS. “I’ll miss the student body, I’ll miss my colleagues. I’ve had some great co-workers, we laugh together and quote Shakespeare in the hallway. I’m going to miss the administration. We have a great administrative team here.”
Palmer’s final piece of wisdom to his students is contained in a quote from Maya Angelou. “To go out and to go out among people, and be cheerful and clever, and allow people to be clever with you”
Palmer interpreted the meaning of the quote, “I think it’s important because obviously cheerful and clever sounds great right? But also to go out there and be clever and cheerful with other people, don’t keep it all to yourself.”
Palmer also added another piece of advice, “I think you should always question everything, and I encourage students to continue to question, don’t just accept.”
See you later Mr. Palmer, we wish the best for you!
By Nayeli Arellano – Sports Editor