If you attend Andover High School, you know Mr. Waters. And chances are he knows you too.

He towers over everyone, his head reaching the very top of the classroom white board. This gentle giant, however, is harmless. I was unable to find a single student who had anything negative to say about him.

Mr. Waters reviews all the work that has been done throughout the semester with his second block Survey of British Literature class. (Photo by Alexia Smith.)
Mr. Waters reviews all the work that has been done throughout the semester with his second block Survey of British Literature class. (Photo by Alexia Smith.)

Waters has been a classroom teacher for 24 years. So, when word got out that he was following his dream to become an administrator, although it came as somewhat of a surprise, students were extremely happy for him.

“We are all very sad to see Mr. Waters go, even if it is just a few yards away, but we are also extremely happy for him,” said senior Mashuk Rahman.

Waters’ new job, if you haven’t guessed it by now, is at Andover’s West Middle School, where he will be the new interim assistant principal.

Although it is not far from his current position, the transition will be a challenge.

“I will always be a teacher at heart and my new position will still allow me to be a teacher but in a different way. I look forward to supporting the students and faculty of West Middle School,” said Waters.

When asked why he decided to take the job, he said, “Opportunities do not arise often, so when they do I always weigh the pros and cons.  I’m interested in all aspects of education so when this opportunity arose to try out an administrative position within the Andover Public Schools for the remainder of the school year, I could not pass it up.”

Waters had some stipulations when accepting this new job. The most important one for his students at the time was that he could finish first semester as their English teacher before moving full-time to the middle school. Surely, all of his students preferred him to a substitute.

Serving as proof that sometimes it’s the little things teachers do that really count, junior Krystal Brighton said, “I am going to miss just seeing him walk through the hallway and waving to everyone.”

Even students who have never had Waters as a teacher understand the positive impact he has had on the high school.

“One of the lessons I tried to instill in my students was the willingness to step outside your comfort zone to experience new challenges,” said Waters.

Just ask anyone and they will have no problem telling you how Mr. Waters taught so much more than just English. He taught us many life lessons, like how finding your passion is important, or how you have to love your job in order to be happy.

Waters said, “Every day will be a challenge. I will be learning each time I step into West Middle. I’m looking forward to supporting teachers so they can do their job to the best of their ability while making students feel safe and confident each day they come to school.”

We all will miss Mr. Waters and we wish him the best of luck on his new journey.

By Alexia Smith