By Irving Jacobo
Being a teacher is more than just teaching, it takes a lot of time and precision; especially if you are a Individualized Education Plan (IEP) teacher
like Mr. Sean Murray. Not only does it take a lot of dedication but it takes a lot of effort and trust to get to know your students well. Murray is more than an ordinary teacher. He’s a friend, and a mentor to his students.
Murray has traveled to more than 20 different countries, speaks two languages including Palau. Murray was a late hire here at McNary High School; he started teaching in the beginning of October 2011.
Before he came to Oregon, Murray was working as volunteer at a school in Philadelphia. When they offered him a position as a teacher, he accepted it. The school was located in what you call an inner city. Which means, the school is located in a low-income community, in which violence and crime are at their highest.
The school he taught at had metal detectors at the front of the school, and police officers in almost every hallway. Since the school was located in a inner city, the school offered their teachers the ability to get a degree in whatever field they wanted as long as it was related to school topics. If a teacher already had a degree they would encourage him or her to get a higher degree with the entire tuition cost paid for. Murray received a degree from Saint Joseph University, where he majored in sociology, but didn’t stop there.
He went on to receive his Master’s degree from Arcadia University. Murray loves to help students who don’t have the ability to learn as well as others do.
“I never expected to become a teacher,” Murray said.
Before he went to college, he had no clue what he was going to study for. He had even less of an idea of what he wanted to do as a career. Before he went into teaching he had some jobs that he didn’t like. He had worked for J.G. Wentworth for a year, but didn’t like it at all. He doesn’t like to be behind a desk and use a computer all day. He wanted to do something where you could interact with people and be able to help them in some way. That’s when Murray moved here to Oregon.
He moved here to seek better job opportunities. He applied late summer and they hired him as a teacher for the IEP department, which includes Learning Resource Center (LRC), and other programs that help students with different ways of learning.
“I have never been to a school that has such a great team of teachers that are dedicated to their students,” Murray said.
As we all know, the teachers and staff here at McNary High School are the best they can be. “I enjoy working here at McNary, The work environment is great!” Murray said.
When he’s not teaching, Murray also dedicates his own time to help with the lacrosse and track team, and doesn’t expect anything in return.