by Amber Carey
Mr. Peter Findler, Wakefield’s Social Studies Department chair and Upper School History teacher, has already been the recipient of Wakefield's two highest honors for excellence in classroom instruction: the Educator of the Year award, and the coveted Peter Quinn Excellence in Education award.
Recently, though, recognition for Mr. Findler's outstanding work moved beyond Wakefield, when he was awarded the Veterans of Foreign Wars Smart-Maher Citizenship Education Teacher of the Year by VFW Post 9835 in Warrenton. This award qualifies his entry into a District VFW level award competition, which could lead to a State VFW level.
This recognition comes as no surprise to those who know Mr. Findler, since “citizenship education” is the driving passion behind all of his varied educational pursuits. When he isn’t teaching Upper School History, spending time with his advisory, or helping to guide Wakefield's Upper School Community Council, he takes on the role of a student: Mr. Findler is currently enrolled at The Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia, earning an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
One might find that to be enough to keep his days busy, but not Mr. Findler--in his “free” time, he and a friend started the non-profit, The 9:57 Project. The project is a "mission-based education program that engages students and military veterans in a study of the legacy of September 11, 2001, leading students to embrace lives of character and service.” The non-profit connects schools and veterans to share uplifting stories of 9/11, as well as other post-9/11 combat stories of bravery and resilience. Most recently, The 9:57 Project collaborated with Wakefield Schools to connect veterans with our Upper and Middle School students on Veterans Day.
Many congratulations on your well-deserved recognition, Mr. Findler. We are fortunate to have you amongst our Wakefield faculty, teaching and guiding our students.