81-Year-Old Retiree Gets Raves From S...

81-Year-Old Retiree Gets Raves From Students, Parents, As Math ...

There are 27 comments on the Hartford Courant story from Mar 15, 2009, titled 81-Year-Old Retiree Gets Raves From Students, Parents, As Math .... In it, Hartford Courant reports that:

Jennifer Piperno, 18, loves Joel Lorden, who is 81. "I don't have a grandfather, and he basically fills that role in my life," says Piperno, a senior at the Taft School in Watertown.

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sunnyd

Cheshire, CT

#1 Mar 16, 2009
Thank you Mr. Lorden for helping me get my first A in math, in high school! I'll never forget it.
another student

AOL

#2 Mar 16, 2009
In the 1970s, I was also a student of Mr Lorden's, back when he was the head coach of the football team and was usually completely hoarse for Monday's class. I became a math major in college and for years worked in the Actuarial department of a local insurance company. Mr. Lorden, thank you! Students today are lucky to have you to help them navigate the SATs.
doug mulcahy

Glastonbury, CT

#3 Mar 16, 2009
great article - bless u --going thru this with a 16 yr. old - wish we had people like u when i was a kid - yrs. ago --wow
Ron Burgundy

Newington, CT

#4 Mar 16, 2009
I second the above comments. See what a difference just one person can make by simply using their talents to benefit society. We need more people like Mr. Lorden!
Another voice

Rocky Hill, CT

#5 Mar 16, 2009
You know it is great that he continues to pass on his knowledge. I couldn't help but notice that most of the folks in the article already went to private schools so it appears to the priviledged go more. But unfortunately that is the way of the world.
reality check

Mansfield Center, CT

#6 Mar 16, 2009
Awesome tutor, awesome man. I wish Mr. Lorden, who is so busy working, had time to write a book or make a video on his approach to math SATs. It would make millions and help so many kids. Just the few tips in the article were helpful.
KevinM

South Windsor, CT

#7 Mar 16, 2009
Another voice wrote:
I couldn't help but notice that most of the folks in the article already went to private schools so it appears to the priviledged go more.
Well, not necessarily. Public employee unions aren't especially volunteer friendly, seeing them as threats to their members. So if you want to volunteer in a school, pick a private shool.

The Courant can test this by sending a reporter to any public school system with an offer to volunteer as a teacher of writing. See what happens.

But bravo to Mr. Lorden. He's shown that the rewards of work are not just monetary. Here's hoping that he enjoys many more years as a volunteer.

Do more newsy, upbeat, go-thou-and-do-likewise stories like this one, Courant.
Former student

San Francisco, CA

#8 Mar 16, 2009
I was fortunate to have Mr. Lorden as a teacher over 20 years ago while at Kingswood and his private tutoring helped me raise my SAT math score substantially. I even returned to him as a college freshman when I was having problems with a specific class.

He is an amazing man with a rare ability to truly connect and get through to his students.

I am thrilled to see he is still helping teenagers and have often thought of him and wondered how he was doing. I wish him all the best during his retirement.
david k

East Hartford, CT

#9 Mar 16, 2009
Mr. Lorden tutored my son a couple of years ago. He is terrific!
W Hartford Mom

West Hartford, CT

#10 Mar 16, 2009
Joel Lorden is an absolute gem!! My older daughter was so fortunate to have him as a tutor.

We all wish you the best, Mr. Lorden!
Wyvern

United States

#11 Mar 16, 2009
Over 30 years ago, I saw Mr. Lorden daily as my advisor, my coach and my teacher (Pre-Cal 1, 2 and Prob & Stats). He was an phenomenal teacher --- maybe the best I ever had --- and an even better football coach and advisor. As this article suggests, besides learning math and test-taking techniques, these students will pick up a whole lot more from Mr. Lorden's humor and wit, his innate ability to know what buttons to push to build up the student's confidence and character and encourage their growth as a person. As I was, these kids are lucky to interact with a truly exceptional person and mentor.

“Some dude opines on news!”

Since: Dec 07

East Hartford

#12 Mar 16, 2009
KevinM wrote:
<quoted text>
Well, not necessarily. Public employee unions aren't especially volunteer friendly, seeing them as threats to their members. So if you want to volunteer in a school, pick a private shool.
The Courant can test this by sending a reporter to any public school system with an offer to volunteer as a teacher of writing. See what happens.
But bravo to Mr. Lorden. He's shown that the rewards of work are not just monetary. Here's hoping that he enjoys many more years as a volunteer.
Do more newsy, upbeat, go-thou-and-do-likewise stories like this one, Courant.
I think what Joel Lorden is doing is great, but the article specifically states that he is NOT "volunteering": although he declined to mention how much he charges, he's clearly running a business. Someone with his experience and knowledge deserves to be compensated for his time and effort... much like those much-maligned teachers in public schools.
Funny how some people will use any flimsy premise to bash unions and/or teachers.
KevinM

South Windsor, CT

#13 Mar 16, 2009
East Hartfordite wrote:
<quoted text>
I think what Joel Lorden is doing is great, but the article specifically states that he is NOT "volunteering": although he declined to mention how much he charges, he's clearly running a business. Someone with his experience and knowledge deserves to be compensated for his time and effort... much like those much-maligned teachers in public schools.
Funny how some people will use any flimsy premise to bash unions and/or teachers.
I know dozens of people who serve as unpaid volunteer mentors or tutors. Some of them are retirees. Others are still working, but participate in employer-sponsored community service programs.

Paid or not, Mr. Lorden obviously is a remarkably gifted math teacher, and I wish I had him while I was struggling with Algebra II.

As written, the article buries the volunteer/paid question toward what I'd call the middle of the end.

Far from bashing Mr. Lorden or other teachers, I complimented him and raised the question of opening more opportunities for volunteers in the nation's schools.

You seem quite defensive on the subject.

Volunteeering is a perfectly good word. There's no need to put it in quotes.

“Some dude opines on news!”

Since: Dec 07

East Hartford

#14 Mar 17, 2009
KevinM wrote:
<quoted text>
I know dozens of people who serve as unpaid volunteer mentors or tutors. Some of them are retirees. Others are still working, but participate in employer-sponsored community service programs.
Paid or not, Mr. Lorden obviously is a remarkably gifted math teacher, and I wish I had him while I was struggling with Algebra II.
As written, the article buries the volunteer/paid question toward what I'd call the middle of the end.
Far from bashing Mr. Lorden or other teachers, I complimented him and raised the question of opening more opportunities for volunteers in the nation's schools.
You seem quite defensive on the subject.
Volunteeering is a perfectly good word. There's no need to put it in quotes.
I put the word in quotes to indicate that you had used it (although I did change the tense)- innaccurately, I might add. Of course there's nothing wrong with volunteering. I think your assertion that public employee unions in the schools will block people from volunteering is overblown, and misleading- this vague, unsupported generalization certainly qualifies as "bashing" employees in public schools.
Jessica Rutenberg Peake

Norwood, MA

#15 Mar 17, 2009
I was fortunate enough to have Mr. Lorden as a teacher and SAT tutor over 15b years ago. He's the best of the best. He's hands down my most favorite and memorable teacher.
KevinM

South Windsor, CT

#16 Mar 17, 2009
East Hartfordite wrote:
<quoted text>
I think your assertion that public employee unions in the schools will block people from volunteering is overblown, and misleading- this vague, unsupported generalization certainly qualifies as "bashing" employees in public schools.
Mr. Lorden is praised by his students and their parents. I assume that his students are able to do well in college without taking remedial math courses. I completely agree that he is providing a service and has a right to charge a fair rate for it.

So the model Mr. Lorden follows is that parents freely choose to use his services, pay him for his talent and, based on their satisfaction, send more business his way.

Conceivably, if circumstances changed, parents (or Mr. Lorden) could also change their plans.

To my mind, this kind of high quality service dleivery, professionalism, open choice and responsiveness would be a wonderful model for the public schools.

I'm not holding my breath until union support is forthcoming.

If it's based on fact, it ain't bashing.
Glenn Shafer

Oakville, CT

#17 Mar 17, 2009
Joel Lorden is a great guy, coach, and teacher!

“Some dude opines on news!”

Since: Dec 07

East Hartford

#18 Mar 17, 2009
KevinM wrote:
<quoted text>
Mr. Lorden is praised by his students and their parents. I assume that his students are able to do well in college without taking remedial math courses. I completely agree that he is providing a service and has a right to charge a fair rate for it.
So the model Mr. Lorden follows is that parents freely choose to use his services, pay him for his talent and, based on their satisfaction, send more business his way.
Conceivably, if circumstances changed, parents (or Mr. Lorden) could also change their plans.
To my mind, this kind of high quality service dleivery, professionalism, open choice and responsiveness would be a wonderful model for the public schools.
I'm not holding my breath until union support is forthcoming.
If it's based on fact, it ain't bashing.
I don't disagree with your overall assessment, but on what "fact" do you base your assertion that the public employee unions will block people from volunteering in the schools?(That was, in fact, the assertion in your first post: don't change the subject or expand on your monologue.)
KevinM

South Windsor, CT

#19 Mar 17, 2009
East Hartfordite wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't disagree with your overall assessment, but on what "fact" do you base your assertion that the public employee unions will block people from volunteering in the schools?
Personal experience, both my own and that of other chronic volunteers.

I was a teacher before going into the private sector. Since then, I've offered my time as a volunteer, but have found work rules get in the way, many of which are just guises for job protection strategies.

Private schools have rules also, but in general seem more receptive to volunteer offers than unionized environments.

But if I were a public school administrator, I'd probably look before I leaped at offers of volunteer help, too. So I'm not entirely opposed to your POV.

But public schools seem to me to be such a jumble of cross purposes, fanciful notions and general mediocrity that fresh viewpoints from people not in the establishment are needed.

General Motors is the private sector example I think of. The company working with the union decided they could add expense to products without adding value to consumers. Buyers turned to the Japanese and Europeans. Now GM is getting a taxpayer bailout. Futile, I think, unless buyers decide they're getting value from GM. Chances imho are slim to zero.

Public schools, which make up the largest part of town budgets, have been getting bailed out by taxpayers for some time now.
Wyvern00

Glastonbury, CT

#20 Mar 17, 2009
What a phenomenal teacher! I was lucky enough to have Mr. Lorden as both an advisor and teacher. He really is the greatest!!!

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