Retiring faculty share plans for future


Areta Quazi

Banker, Monz, and Weaver at work

Areta Quazi, Staff Writer

  For some, retirement may seem like only the end of a career, but for WHS educators Peter Banker, John Monz, and Linnea Weaver, retirement will offer a new beginning and an opportunity to try new things, even as they  take with them all they have enjoyed about WHS. 

   Monz is trying to make the most of his final days at WHS, and advises his fellow and future retirees to do the same.

   “Enjoy the process.Try something new sometime,” said Monz.

   Weaver, a speech and language pathologist, began her time at WHS most recently, having arrived four years ago. Her passion for her career as a whole, however, began  during her high school internship and has continued to this day.

   “I absolutely loved it because it involved the brain, kids, and being positive,” said Weaver. “I was very lucky to find what I loved at the age of 17.”

   Banker, an English teacher, on the other hand, discovered his affinity for English by first teaching history.

   “[My interest in English] came to be through my experience with history. I liked teaching history but I didn’t find it to be creative enough for me,” said Banker.

   Monz, a mathematics teacher, has worked in Weston since 1978 by first coaching cross-country and track, and then starting as a math teacher in 1997. He has brought his encouraging attitude into the classroom as well as on the track.

   “Mr. Monz coached my mom, so he has been working here for a long time.” said freshman Shelby Crutchfield. “My mom doesn’t run anymore but she can still hear him coaching her. Mr. Monz makes a big impact on his students and is always encouraging, which I know from my experience.”

   Reflecting on their years working in Weston, Banker, Monz, and Weaver all believe they have been significantly impacted by the students and staff.

   “I’ve learned humility, I’ve learned hardwork from other teachers, I’ve learned that we truly are all equal, not only racially but more so in humanity,” said Banker. “I am no better or worse at anything than a 14-year-old.”

   Along with working and getting to know students and faculty, Monz has learned a few key skills along the way.

   “[I learned] to be calm and patient always, [to not] take anything personally, [and to] finish each day and move

on,” said Monz. 

   Weaver has supported students from elementary school to high school. Her diversity in learning and thinking has provided a unique perspective on speech and language expertise.

   “She has really just brought a whole breadth of experience and knowledge that has been a pleasure to work with,” said special education department head Patrick Kelly.

   Weaver believes in the value of building relationships with her students, and she keeps their unforgettable stories with her.

   “[My  advice to other teachers is to] take time to develop relationships. I know that at Weston High we’re really told to do that, and I believe in giving time to do that,” said Weaver.

   Banker has also taken the initiative to establish relationships with his students, notably through his interactive class activities.

   “He makes connections and shows interest in everyone’s life,” said Crutchfield. “Mr. Banker is very open and trusting in his students, which allows his students to return that same trust in him.”

   Monz has been more of a friend to many students than anything else. Instead of only being an instructor, students report that Monz uses his class to educate his students not only in math but in other inspirational, lifelong knowledge.

   “I cannot express how much he loves his students and loves to teach. His love for these topics really rubs off on all of us, and I can assure everyone that our class is so much better with him,” said freshman Alexander Cross.    

   For all three soon-to-be-former teachers, retirement holds the opportunity of new beginnings and ways to continue the things they love.

   “I’m going to play music, I’m going to travel, I’m going to seek another profession in a part-time way,” said Banker. “I’m definitely going to work; I’m not going to relax. I’m not going to retire from work because I like to work, and I believe in work a lot.”

   Monz will continue his work in coaching while also getting some rest.

   “[I will continue to do] more of the things I like: sleeping past 5:30 am, [continuing] more work with the Massachusetts State Track Coaches’Association and the MIAA, and coaching track for a few more years,” said Monz. 

   Weaver wants to take the time to explore with her family while also working in her profession. 

   “I’ll continue to work in private practice, travel a bit, spend more time with my family, and train my dog,” said Weaver.

  While many at WHS will miss each of these educators given what they have brought to the school, as they depart it is clear that the work they have done has had an impact.

    “It is nice to leave a job knowing that you’ve done it well,” said Banker.