As a substitute teacher at TCS last year, Brad Haywood enjoyed getting to know all of our students and was able to take part in many of the learning activities at our school. This year, Brad is thrilled to serve on our 4th grade team teaching math, social studies and Bible. “I love all the subjects I teach,” says Brad, “but without a doubt, I am most excited about teaching Biblical Worldview. I love Biblical history as well as viewing what’s going on in the world through a Christian lens. The students will tell you I get pretty fired up in Biblical Worldview. I also will take any opportunity I can to serve as chapel speaker.”
Brad grew up in a rural town in southern Illinois. “After high school, I played football at the University of Illinois on a full football scholarship,” he says. “In my sophomore year at U of I, we were Big Ten Champions, and I played in the Sugar Bowl. After college, I enlisted in the Army. I was a Combat Engineer and Jumpmaster with the 82nd Airborne Division; I deployed to Iraq twice in this role. Later, I deployed to the southern Philippines twice and returned to Iraq for a third time as a Psychological Operations Sergeant. I went to Officer Candidate School and finished my military career as a Personnel Officer. In addition to five deployments, I did tours in both Germany and Korea.”
Brad continues, “This summer, I completed a 7-week PADI Divemaster program with The Dive Station here in Orlando. I can now lead certified divers as well as assist Instructors as they certify divers. I enjoy diving in the different springs throughout Central Florida as well as catching lobsters off of the Atlantic coast by Ft. Lauderdale. I love traveling (have traveled to 38 different countries) as well as whitewater rafting and exploring different waterfalls.”
Although Brad did not aspire to become a teacher early in his career, he is happy to have discovered his passion for teaching at this point in his life. “After the military, I was not sure what I wanted to do,” says Brad. “During my last three years in the Army I was a Personnel Officer; therefore, I thought it would be a natural transition into the HR field. However, that is not where my passion was. I truly felt God was calling me into not only education but Christian education. I took a leap of faith by resigning a good position to go back to graduate school to earn my Master’s in Education. While in school, a parochial school was looking for a 5th and 6th grade Math teacher, so I became a full-time student and teacher at the same time! The doors truly started opening when I sought after God’s purpose for my life.”
“I am excited about this year with my students,” says Brad. “I really enjoy Florida history, and a lot of our field trips are focused on Social Studies. I am looking forward to bringing the history of Florida to life for them at St. Augustine as well as at Fort Christmas. On a day-to-day basis, I look forward to building relationships and mentoring students during such an important time in their lives.”
“I am happy to be at The Christ School. I love the focus on Jesus. We make Him a priority every day, which means we truly are aligned with our mission to provide a Christ-centered educational experience,” Brad continues.
“My wife Asha and I have two sons who are students at TCS. Daniel is in 1st grade and Elijah is in TK. My hope is that my children see the entire world through a Christian lens. I do not want them to be just ‘lukewarm Christians.’ We look forward to building relationships with other families in The Christ School community” he says.