Dr. Harry Gutelius, Alumni
32 Years, A Student Favorite
A LOVE FOR TEACHING
F-A.COM: What was your most memorable moment (or moments) teaching at Frankford?
GUTELIUS: That's really almost impossible to answer; there simply isn't enough time to respond. I loved teaching in my classroom every day. I loved the football games.
I loved working with my colleagues. I loved running assemblies every day for six years. I loved my work in the yearbook office. It was truly a blessing to spend those great years at my alma mater.
THE ROAD NOT TAKEN
F-A.COM: Who or what inspired you to become a teacher when you were a student at Frankford?
GUTELIIUS: I honestly didn't want to be a teacher when I graduated from Frankford. I was admitted to Temple's School of Journalism and wanted to become a sports writer (I was sports editor of the Highway and the Record Book). I also thought about becoming a minister in the Lutheran church.
FRANKFORD…FERTILE TEACHING SOIL
F-A.COM: How did Frankford prepare you to become a teacher and a principal?
GUTELIUS; The best way that my days at Frankford inspired me to become a principal was the influence of Mr. Killough, who was my principal as a student and then as a beginning teacher.
He showed me that a principal could enjoy time with students and that's what I wanted to be: a principal who could relate to students and enjoy being with them.
A PASSION FOR BASEBALL
F-A.COM: When did your love for baseball begin? Could you share a memorable baseball playing moment and a memorable baseball coaching moment?
GUTELIUS: I always loved baseball. My dad ran a successful amateur team and also became a full time regional scout for the Minnesota Twins.
I had many wonderful coaching moments, most as head guy at Philly Textile. But my favorite was the day my amateur team, Abco Bulbs, won two games in a day at the AAABA tournament in Johnstown PA.
TEACHING, A JOY…NOT A JOB
F-A.COM You were definitely a student favorite. What do you think contributed to your success?
GUTELIUS: For me, teaching was never a j-o-b; it was always a j-o-y. I worked very hard at planning and tried to deliver a program that I would like to have had as a student.
F-A.COM: Is there a road you wish you have taken? If you did not pursue teaching, what career path would you have taken?
GUTELIUS: I honestly have no regrets, which is a real blessing.
TRANSITION FROM SECONDARY TO COLLEGE
F-A.COM: What was the transition like going from secondary teaching to college level?
GUTELIUS: It really wasn't much of a transition, except for the lack of continual student contact. In secondary school the kids are in the same building with you for all classes, and you see them every day. In college I only saw them twice/three times per week, rarely outside of my class, and only for about four months.
TODAY’S EDUCATION VS. 40 YEARS AGO
F-A.COM: How does today's public school education differ from 40 years ago?
GUTELIUS: There are just so many differences, but the biggest by far is technology. It has completely changed the way instruction is delivered as well as how the students are willing to receive instruction
TODAY’S ENGLISH CURRICULUM
F-A.COM: What do you think is missing from the public school English curriculum and need to be added now?
GUTELIUS: There needs to be more emphasis on writing in most of the districts with which I am familiar, and, as has been true for decades, there is insufficient emphais on oral communication.
F-A.COM: What are your hobbies and interests? Are your children teachers? I understand you have two sons, what are their careers.
GUTELIUS: I still love sports, especially baseball. I also love to travel; my wife and I have been to all seven continents, including an excursion to Antarctica. My one son is a teacher and a coach in hgh school, and my other son works in sales for a large corporation.
BASEBALL COACHING EXPERIENCE
F-A.COM: Tell me a little about your baseball coaching experience?
GUTELIUS: I was coach at Textile for eight years, and I coached in the AAABA league for two. I then went back and coaching Little League through American Legion with my sons' teams.
F-A.COM: Finally, what was your biggest challenge in your career and your biggest joy.
GUTELIUS: Mt biggest challenge was principal of Washington High for 12 years; running a diverse school of 3500 students was a real challenge, but it was a great joy as well.
I really loved all of my 32 years in Philly--different schools, but being at my Alma Mater for 8 and then Washington for 12 were my greatest joys. I loved everything about those 20 years.