Educator continues his love of teaching as he hits 50 years at Princeton High School

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Jeffrey Lucker has been teaching social studies for 50 years at Princeton High School.

He enjoys it to this day.

“I sort of backed into it. I did not know I wanted to teach until my first day of student teaching. After that I knew,” Lucker said.

At Princeton High School, he teaches five classes a week, currently. Lucker’s  classes span from senior electives in Latin America Studies, Middle Eastern Studies, World Religions, and World History AP for juniors.

Lucker’s studies to become a teacher began at the University of Wisconsin in the 1960s.

“I ended up at Princeton High School by accident. I was at the University of Wisconsin applying for jobs at the teacher placement bureau,” he said. “Most of the jobs coming in were from Wisconsin and surrounding areas. There was one that came in from Princeton for a leave replacement. We had sabbaticals back then. I was hired and the rest is history as they say.”

He teaches between 120-130 students a year.

“I love the students, they are very engaging. I feel totally involved and present at that moment when I am with the students. There is also this certain aspect of unpredictability to teaching. You can be doing this for 50 years and something happens that has never happened before,” he said.

For Lucker he changes up the way he teaches his classes from year to year. He wants his classes to always be current and interesting.

For example, last year he was teaching a course in World Religions. He had a rabbi, a minister and an imam come into the classroom on multiple occasions to speak to the students. Lucker wanted them to speak about what they do.

“I wanted the students to realize that clergy do more than just preach one day a week. The classroom aspect of teaching is the most enjoyable part for me,” he said.

The difficult part of the job for him is the amount of grading and paper work.

Over the course of 50 years, Lucker has not seen a drastic difference in how he teaches. The only part of teaching that has changed for him is the advancement of technology, which he said has had a favorable impact on his teaching.

The Princeton Public School District honored Lucker for his 50 years by naming Jan. 18th “Lucker Day” at Princeton High School and in the Princeton Schools.

“I truly enjoyed it and appreciated it,” he said.

Lucker said he feels that he can continue to teach for many years and will revisit the idea of retirement at the end of each year.

“I enjoy what I do and have achieved what I wanted to do as an educator,” he said.