Meet the Director of Emotional Intelligence

Danielle Nares '21, Staff Writer

In Middle School, when students walked through the halls, Mr. Fancher always greeted them with their names and a warm smile. It was evident that he made his job as the Head of Middle School not just a title, but a position where he made an impact on the lives of the students on a personal level. Now, even though he is not the Head of Middle School, his new focus at the school can be seen as a continuation of his old presence. This is especially true because he started off as our school psychologist in 1980.

After being the Head of Middle School for 24 years, Mr. Fancher has taken the position of being the Director of Emotional Intelligence. “Emotional intelligence,” he states, “is being aware of others and yourself in order to build positive relationships.” Furthermore, he explains how this ability to be emotionally intelligent should be considered just as important as academics to student life. To put this into context, consider the life of a high school student; it is often difficult for students to open up about their problems. Moreover, it is critical that they are self-aware and have someone to talk to who is empathetic.

Mr. Fancher will work with adults to study the behaviors of St. Luke’s students. He will further share his knowledge with the school community to create healthier relationships. He wishes that all parents and teachers get on board with his study. Also, he thinks that parents can benefit from the relationships they form so they can be present in their child’s journey at school.

Mr. Fancher is also excited to be back in the classroom. He will be teaching a health mini-course and a psychology elective for seniors. “If you remember Life Skills, I want to bring the lessons that I learned from Life Skills to the classroom,” he says. Life Skills, which is not being offered this year, is a course that many current upper schoolers took in both 6th and 8th grade. He explains that there should not be stand-alone, discrete classes for emotional intelligence; in his classes, he wants students to learn lessons in ideology that they can apply to their daily life.

Mr. Davis’ meditation, “Turn Off in Order to Turn On,” also relates to Mr. Fancher’s mission. He is ready to take on the school year because he has had a chance to “recharge” this summer. “I have worked every summer since 1972, and this was the first summer that I had off,” he said happily.

Currently, the transition of his position makes him a little anxious. On the one hand, he is nervous about starting a new position, but he feels ready to go back to something he loves: psychology. The door to his new office, near the middle school gym, is always open to students.