By Hartland Schools
Kirk Taylor has been teaching for 36 years, 35 of those years have been with Hartland Consolidated Schools.
Kirk received his Bachelor’s Degree from Central Michigan University and has done graduate work at Oakland University, Michigan State University, Eastern Michigan University and the Cranbrook School. He has served as chairperson of the middle and high school English departments. Kirk was chosen as Hartland Consolidated Schools’ Teacher of the Year in 1986.
During his 35 years in Hartland he has taught at every building except Creekside Elementary and the high school and is in his 29th year teaching eighth grade English language arts. During his tenure Kirk has also made over 20 student films, produced eight student-performance festivals, directed and co-directed 13 middle school plays, coached 7th and 8th grade, junior varsity and varsity girls’ basketball, and boys’ eighth grade basketball.
Kirk is married to Marianne (Pellegrini) Taylor and has two children: Graeme, 16, and Jane, 13. They also have a cat named Stanley. In addition to his many commitments with Hartland Schools, Kirk has also coached his children’s “rec & ed sports’ teams” and is currently making a film featuring his son and several of his friends.
Most memorable moment:
“In the spring of 1981, while teaching sixth grade at Lakes Elementary, Margaret Allen (then a sixth grade teacher, now retired), her husband and I were formally invited to an unforgettable dinner at the home of one of our sixth grade students. We were greeted at the front entrance by our sixth grade maître d' and shown to our seats in the dining room. There we were served an exquisite meal by a team of six uniformed sixth graders. Our wait staff had impeccable manners and gave impeccable service. We never saw the parents-behind-the-scene until after dessert. A cool idea, carried out beautifully. Later, Margaret and I talked about how lucky we were to teach in Hartland.”
“One day, when I was teaching eighth grade English at the Farms Middle School, I was lecturing passionately on an important topic. When finished I asked if there were any questions. A girl raised her hand. How exciting! She was interested in one of my lecture’s big ideas! I eagerly called on her and she earnestly asked, “Mr. Taylor, did you know that one of your shoes is a little darker than the other one?”
Why you are still here and positive thoughts about Hartland Schools:
“I was warmly welcomed into the Hartland Consolidated Schools family in 1978 and have considered it my home away from home ever since. In Hartland Schools, we know each other’s names and help each other when help is needed. We work and play and laugh and cry together. Everyone is cared for and cared about.
I keep a copy of our mission statement on my classroom wall. It guides my actions as a teacher every day (over 6,000 and counting!):
“The Hartland Consolidated Schools, in cooperation with the community, will provide a positive environment for the developing of productive and caring individuals of all ages. We are teaching for learning for life.”
I do my best to keep my students safe; to be a warm teacher; to care about my students. I do my best to provide my students with excellent opportunities to acquire more language and language skills so they may better achieve their goals in life. I do my best to help my students find and develop their talents so that they may become productive and caring individuals…and maybe even happy.
That in mind, I ask the voting members of our community to use your voices to inform your elected representatives you will do what it takes to preserve the spirit of family we have in our Hartland Consolidated Schools—a gift we inherited from those who came before us, and a gift we intend to pass on to those whose turn has yet to come.”