Ask Corey Slater the question, “Ten years ago, what did you think you would be doing now?” and you’ll get a simple and straightforward answer.
“To be honest,” he said, “teaching at Northwest Community Schools.”
But ask him who he would choose if he could be any fictional character and you’ll get an entirely different answer.
“Raymond Reddington from the Blacklist,” Slater said, referring to lead character in the NBC crime thriller series. “This might not be the most ‘correct’ answer, but I would love to travel the world and see some of the things that he has. Plus, he knows a lot of secrets and his power is due to his knowledge.”
Slater knows a bit about knowledge. He’s passed along plenty of that in his 20 years teaching at Northwest Community Schools. A British Literature teacher at Northwest High School, Slater was named a 2018-19 Professional Educator Award winner. The award goes to a highly effective educator who has shown truly outstanding results in student achievement.
“He or she has taken what it means to be a professional teacher by implementing best practices and in turn produced positive academic results,” the award reads. “He/she knows his/her content inside and out, but more importantly understands the learning process and how to teach by engaging students ‘higher level thinking skills.’ ”
That necessary level of engagement starts with having a good student-teacher relationship. Slater’s advice to students who might be struggling in school revolves around that very fact.
“Make sure that you make positive relationships with your teachers,” he said. “Teachers are always willing to help you, and when you have a positive relationship with your teachers, it allows true learning to happen.”
Here are five more things to know about Corey Slater:
What would you name your autobiography of your life?
Corey Slater: The Humorous Life and Viewpoints from a Teacher. “I think that people need to hear about the good, funny and touching things that happen every day in the classroom and in the school.”
What three traits define you?
Hardworking, kind, friendly.
If you could meet anyone living or dead, who would you meet?
“I would like to see my Grandpa Slater again. He is one of my heroes, and I have a tremendous amount of pride being his grandson. I hope that I am making him proud.”
If you could learn to do anything what would it be?
“Play the acoustic guitar. I have always wanted to learn to play a musical instrument and I would love to play the guitar.”
What is your favorite thing about working in Northwest Community Schools?
“The people. The teachers, administration and students are like a family.”