Olympic High School teacher Skip Weinstock makes a difference in his students' lives
When a student walks into Skip Weinstock's office at Olympic Continuation High School, the 67-year-old teacher immediately makes eye contact and asks what he can do to help.
"I focus on one student at a time, one moment at a time," says the gray-haired, gray-bearded educator, who has taught at the school for 41 years.
"While you have my attention, you get 100 percent of me."
Many students think the world of Weinstock
, left, whom they call "Skip," pictured on the left.
They credit him with keeping them focused on school and helping them figure out what they want to do in life.
is the kind of person who will take you aside and say, 'You need to get yourself together,'" said Cookieey Ropati, a 17-year-old foster youth living in Pittsburg.
stayed at the campus for more than four decades because he
is committed to working with those who have struggled in life.
Olympic accepts students who are behind in credits or who have difficulty fitting in at traditional high schools for a variety of reasons.
Because many students learn by doing, Weinstock cofounded the Service Learning Program on campus in 1976, in which students work in schools and other community organizations.
The experience and exposure to new work environments encourages them to pursue careers or areas of study they might not have otherwise considered.
and a colleague also began the school's leadership program decades ago.
Although another teacher took it over for a few years, Weinstock is back in charge this year, getting students revved up for a mock election in November.
At one school board meeting where students were invited to talk about teachers who help and encourage them, Weinstock
stood out for the all the right reasons.
After hearing the comments, Superintendent Steven Lawrence said: "We need to clone Skip."
Weinstock also works as an educational consultant for Youth Homes, which serves foster youth, by helping place students in local schools.
"I think I have a special place in my heart for people," he
Name: Skip Weinstock