Teacher provides welcoming atmosphere


Chloe Grimm

Fry poses in his classroom, surrounded by his posters and memorabilia.

Prisoners of War Missing in Action flag, the Beatles in London poster, a mural of Steve Jobs, a newspaper page after World War I and a Cleveland Browns 75th Anniversary flag. While this seems to be a scattered list, these items have one thing in common, a place in social studies teacher Jeff Fry’s classroom C110. After thirty years of collecting these treasures, everywhere students look on the walls, there is a new poster and a new piece of history to find. 

Revere High School teacher Fry shares his school spirit through different clubs he advises, Academic Challenge, his role in the Veteran’s Day Assembly and his creative room. 

Fry has been a teacher at Revere for 26 years and a teacher in general for 30. He is also the social studies department head and dedicates a lot of time to the school. One way is by creating a homey environment when a student walks through his classroom doors. 

“I told myself a long time ago, if I’m going to be spending five days a week, seven hours a day in one room that it should be an environment that I feel good in and that I feel at home in. . . when I look around, I like to see things that inspire me, motivate me, entertain me, and I hope it will entertain my students as well,” Fry said. 

In his classroom, Fry teaches AP US History (APUSH), Honors American History and Street Law. It is also the place where the clubs that he advises, Junior Statesmen of America and Students Demand Action, have their meetings. Junior Statesmen of America is a discussion organization where students meet and talk about different topics; Students Demand Action is a club where students try to get active politically in their community and also have discussion groups twice a month. Senior Drake Du was a founding member of Students Demand Action his freshman year and has been part of the club ever since. This year, Du is president, and he explained what Fry brings to the team as adviser. 

“He likes to give us a lot of freedom and explore things we want to talk about and things we’re really passionate about. He also adds his own input to the things we talk about. He’s always there to support us, [and] he really enjoys elevating the ideas we put forth,” Du said. 

Fry met Du back in ninth grade but had not had him in class until this year, where he is in APUSH. Du is part of both the clubs that he advises, along with the Academic Challenge Team. Fry has been part of the team for 24 years and helped the team get onto television where they won 6,000 dollars from the Northeast Ohio program. Academic Challenge is also run by English teacher Nicholas Kos, who has been a part of the program for around five years. Kos is the Junior Varsity coach for the team, while Fry serves as the Varsity coach. Kos spoke on how he feels the strong dynamic between him and Fry help to create a strong team. 

“We just really get along really well as constituents here, and I just have a really big passion for trivia and stuff… Our kids are really strong and united, and I think that’s because Mr. Fry and I work so well, so they work well as a team,” Kos said. 

Fry spends extra time after school to give students the opportunity to be a part of these expressive clubs and a chance to be on the Academic Challenge Team. He decided to dedicate this time to Revere to help these students meet other students with similar interests. Student athletes may have practice and are too busy to attend a meeting, and Fry is happy to give a chance for kids who are not part of a sport or extracurricular to have an environment to meet other like-students. 

“I think that the main reason that I support them is that it gets kids active, and maybe kids might need an opportunity to get involved, to meet other kids, so that’s why I [advise the clubs] and why a lot of teachers get involved in programs like that,” Fry said. 

Although Fry is part of all these activities, at the forefront is his job as a social studies teacher. This year, the entire social studies department played a role in executing the Veterans Day assembly. Veterans Day, November eleventh, is an important day to many students and staff in the Revere district and is important to help educate students and honor the veterans that have served or are currently serving. Fry said why he believed the Veterans Day assembly is so important at RHS.

“I think for most of us, Veterans Day is and should be a huge day because it’s a reminder that millions of people have served our country so a lot of us don’t have to. That’s what I want to show to our kids; we haven’t had a draft since 1973 in Vietnam, and we haven’t had to have a draft because we have volunteers that serve,” Fry said.

To a student the assembly may seem like only an informative and cordial presentation, but before the assembly took place while the students were in class, the veterans were greeted with a breakfast and songs and poetry by the first graders. To produce such an influential event, many staff members come together to help out. In past years former teacher Jack Cooper was in charge of the event, but after his retirement in 2019, the social studies department, along with teacher Amy Fagnilli, Principal Dr. Peltz, Vice Principal Doug Farris, Dr. Darren LeBeau, first grade teacher Debbie Schwertner, the custodians, cafeteria workers and much more collaborated to host the event. 

As social studies department head, Fry is part of the event and took the role as coordinator. Fry explained what he did to help out.

“I kind of coordinate things, but I also was the one that communicated with the first graders, and I organized with Mr. Peltz and Mr. Farris to make sure everything was set up and ready to go that way on the administrative end,” Fry said. 

The assembly is a great way to inform students and honor veterans, and Fry along with everyone part of the day are the reason for this special day. 

Even with a job from 7:34 to 2:37, Fry dedicates more time to further his involvement at Revere, where he advises different clubs and organizations and will not let a student fall into boredom in his classroom, since everywhere you look there is a new poster to discover and the teacher to ask is ready to share. Even if a student may discover every poster in Fry’s room, which may take the entire school year, Fry sports a different tie almost every day of the year. There is always a new story to discover in classroom C110.