Mr.Lauricella is Sparta’s new social studies, world language and ESL supervisor. Mr.Lauricella stressed that the door is always open for students to come in. His office is right across from the culinary room. The staff at The Oracle warmly welcomes him to Sparta.
Q: How did you decide to become a supervisor?
A: I thought that I could make a bigger impact in a supervisor role. In a classroom, you can only make an affect on your set of students, 130 or however many students you may have. So as a supervisor you sort of have a little more reach and can make a little more change on a bigger scale.
Q: You’re only human. What are your hobbies outside of school?
A: I’m a big sports person, I like skiing, I spent a lot of time this summer on the beach...I just got married in October, there’s a lot going on. I’m more than happy to engage with the students at any given time.
Q: What’s the most interesting social studies class? Why is it intriguing to you?
A: My favorite one to teach was always US II. I always liked US II because of the content area, the setup of the United States and power I always found very interesting. (Editor’s Note: Mr.Lauricella took Spanish in high school! Relatable to students, he doesn’t remember a ton of Spanish. He believes world language is still a critical component as language and culture is very important, especially with the world becoming so globalized.)
Q: What advice would you have for ESL students that face some difficulties?
A: Continue trying to immerse yourself in the language. It can be very uncomfortable when you’re first trying to immerse yourself in a language, especially English as it is incredibly difficult. Keep on being persistent, cause it’s not easy!
Q: Where were you before you came to Sparta High School?
A: I was a teacher at Passaic High School, an inner-city high school, I taught all high school grades, 9,10,11, and 12. I taught 8th grade in Ridgewood and then I transferred here.
A: Sparta is a top district in the state of New Jersey so that’s very attractive. Coming from Ridgewood I didn’t want to take a step down in terms of quality of school district and I definitely did not.
Q: Are there any political or social issues you’re passionate about?
A: I’m relatively involved in the political process. I think it’s important for us to be involved and informed as citizens so that’s a passion of mine for everyone. With our new presidential administration coming in there’s a lot going on, so it’s important to be involved and know what’s going on. I have a big passion for international travel and meeting other people from different cultures - I think that’s important as citizens of the U.S to experience things outside the U.S.
Q: What’s the freshest approach you’re bringing to Sparta High?
A: I care about the students. A student-centered approach is important, I wanna also maximize the strengths of my teachers - the things that my teachers do well I want them to continue doing, and I wanna improve in the areas where they may need some improvement. I want to increase administrative-student relationships; as a teacher I built very strong relationships with students, some of who I am still in touch with today, it’s hard in this position where i am not seeing students on a day-to-day basis to build that relationship. Students can stop on by to chat.
Q: What advice would you give to students who may be struggling in class?
A: It’s based on a case-by-case scenario. I can’t give a straight blank answer to that, but I’m more than happy to listen to the concerns of the students and I encourage them to come down to meet the needs of the student and balance things out. The door may not always physically be open, but the door is always open to the students if they need to discuss.