About Mr. Rod Wielkie...
Position: 8th Social Studies
Phone: (480) 883-4677
I am entering my fifth year as a teacher and am having a blast. Although my previous 30-year career as a Federal Law Enforcement Special Agent (and supporting similar missions overseas when I retired) was the most interesting, thrilling, exciting, period of my life, teaching junior high students has been the most fulfilling and purposeful. I sincerely look forward going to work each and every day. I learn from the kids as much as they learn from me. As I enter the evening of my life, the energy, optimistic enthusiasm, and unique perspective I experience each day in my classroom is contagious and revitalizing.
My teaching style is one of mutual respect and expectations. At the middle and high school level, students are at the age where they are emerging as individuals and challenge authority and established culture. I believe this is not a time of mere turmoil but an opportunity to encourage mental growth, acceptance, and nurture viable inclusion into society.
My Education and Professional Background
In 2007 I retired as a Special Agent/Criminal Investigator with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). After retiring from DEA, I managed various programs for the US Government in Afghanistan and conducted background investigations on government applicants as a contractor. Before my career with DEA, I served in the US Navy Submarine Service and the US Army Reserve. After my active military service, I attended the University of Northern Colorado where I received a BA in Political Science with a minor in Russian/Soviet Studies. After retiring from DEA, I attended Arizona State University, Mary Fulton Teachers College, where I completed the requirements for my secondary education certification as an educator of social studies and history at the middle and high school level.
My Educational Philosophy
Although I think education in the sciences and technology is critical to our ability to compete in the world, the study of humanities and arts are paramount in preparing children and young adults to participate in a common civic culture. Education such as social studies and history is essential to cultivate active participation in a robust democracy. I believe schools should instill those values that living in a democracy comes with responsibility requiring sincere contemplation, critical thinking, respectful debate, and active participation.