Mr. Jeremy Fus tackles math with multiple strategies

Mr. Jeremy Fus – Jeffrey Yang ’22

With an emphasis on building relationships, Mr. Jeremy Fus will bring his unique teaching style to upper school math. 

After teaching math at Sacred Heart Academy for the last two years, Mr. Fus was drawn to the Haverford community even through an entirely virtual interview process. 

“The philosophy of the school as a whole and the math department meshed with my values of relational teaching through building close relationships. It just seems like a great place to grow as a teacher and person,” Mr. Fus said. 

While many believe math is purely transactional in finding a single right answer, Mr. Fus instead strives to make the subject transformative. He emphasizes working through the problems rather than memorizing information. Mr. Fus notices the demands of what students need from their education have evolved. Rather than regurgitating information, Mr. Fus wants students to solve problems collaboratively and find relevance to their own lives in their education. 

“… for me, the answer is less important than what you did to get there and what you learned along the way.”

Mr. Jeremy Fus

“I think it’s unfortunate that many people’s conceptions of math are purely transactional. I approach teaching math by rather focusing on the process, getting your hands dirty by finding strategies to get to the answer,” Mr. Fus said. “So for me, the answer is less important than what you did to get there and what you learned along the way.” 

Transitioning from teaching at an all-girls Roman Catholic school to an all-boys non-sectarian school will impact Mr. Fus’ teaching in some aspects. 

“I think developing relationships or working through problems will remain the same for me. However, I think probably one of the biggest changes is going to be school culture,” Mr. Fus said. 

Culture-wise, Mr. Fus believes that academic competition is not unique to one gender. 

“I think academic competition shows up in both girls and boys. I think there is a lot of pressure to get good grades and into colleges for high school students,” Mr. Fus said. 

To combat this potentially toxic competitive behavior, Mr. Fus strives to approach math with a different lens. 

Mr. Jeremy Fus (left) and Quinn Luong ’22 (right) on a Zoom call- Screenshot by Quinn Luong ’22

“I hope to relieve some of that pressure by building a culture that is not so hyper-focused on grades with my approach to the course and grading in particular. I don’t want my class to be focused on high-stakes tests,” Mr. Fus said. 

Mr. Fus was also drawn to Haverford’s progress in confronting problems of equity and access within its education. 

“This school has put a lot of work recently in being more diverse, inclusive, and equitable, and that is something I hope to help Haverford move forward with,” Mr. Fus said. 

 “There’s a lot of work to be done to make math more equitable, and by that, I mean making sure that every student has what they need to thrive.”

Mr. Jeremy Fus

Mr. Fus also believes that math, along with many other academic subjects, has a long way to go in terms of equity and access. 

“I think that math in particular is one of the less diverse STEM fields. The field of mathematics in college and beyond is heavily skewed towards white men,” Mr. Fus said. “There’s a lot of work to be done to make math more equitable, and by that, I mean making sure that every student has what they need to thrive.” 

Beyond the classroom, Mr. Fus has an affinity for ultimate frisbee and picked up on bird-watching recently. 

“I play ultimate frisbee a lot. I started playing in high school, college, and I am now on a club team,” Mr. Fus said. “I am also an emerging bird enthusiast, so I am starting to learn how to identify birds. I would invite anyone who is also interested in birds to join me.” 

Students can also find Mr. Fus on the courts coaching tennis. 

“I recently started playing tennis, so I have a small amount of experience. I am excited to get to know some students in a non-academic setting and on a deeper level,” Mr. Fus said. “Hopefully, I will be able to hone my own tennis skills.” 

Author: Quinn Luong '22

Quinn Luong has contributed to The Index since 2019. He currently serves as News Editor, and he has also written features and campus opinions. Quinn won the Pennsylvania School Press Association (PSPA) Philadelphia-area Student Journalism Competition for Newspaper News Story Writing and will compete for the state title in the Spring of 2020. His article "Teachers prepare for Virtue Villagers" earned a Silver Key from the Philadelphia-area Scholastic Writing competition. Outside of The Index, Quinn is a member of the Diversity Alliance, the Pan-Asian Alliance, debate and speech, and Model UN. His favorite classes are English, Spanish, and Chinese.