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FEATURE: The Great Renz

By Samuel Blazier

With his comprehensive manner to drive home his point and the ability to brighten one’s day, AP Environmental teacher Daniel Renz is a qualified teacher at Batavia High School, according to both students and other teachers. Ever since Renz first started teaching at Batavia High School 16 years ago, he has, according to students and teachers, left an everlasting impression.

One of those teachers, band director Chris Owen, has shown a great bond with Mr. Renz.

“I love Mr. Renz. Not only is he an amazing teacher that teaches content in a fun way, but he is also a great friend and colleague, as well,” Owen said. “Batavia HS is a better place because of amazing teachers like Mr. Renz.”

Aside from Owen, biology teacher Mary Jane Tupper also thinks highly of Renz. 

“Mr. Renz and I have been friends and colleagues for many years,” Tupper said.  “He has a wonderful sense of humor and can make anyone having a rough day smile.  He is someone you want on your team as he has a great work ethic and is a great leader.  Mr. Renz has shown these qualities in all that he does for BHS.”

Another teacher who speaks highly of Renz is biology teacher Virginia Platt.

“Mr. Renz is a teacher that emulates what it means to be in this profession,” Platt said.  “He cares not just about teaching his content but cares about all his students.  He teaches students to advocate and think for themselves.”

Aside from teachers, Renz also appears to sit well with students. 

“I really appreciate his ability to go over the class materials in a comprehensive manner and also prepare labs that accurately simulate the real-world problems we’ve learned about,” Balisi said.

Based on the information gathered from both teachers and students, it appears that Renz is one heck of a good teacher. With his stern but gentle manner, Renz hasn’t just taught his passion word for word, he has also taught it in a way that is fun and enjoyable such as through interactive labs and heart-touching movies that raise awareness of what humans are doing to the Earth, and how humans can still make things right if they take action now.

Aside from the fact that Renz is one great teacher, he also is passionate about the natural environment outside school. For the past few years, Renz has been working alongside the Batavia Environmental Commission on a Retention Pond Restoration Project, a project with a mission to restore a stormwater retention pond. According to the Batavia Environmental Commission, the restored retention pond would “help filter and improve water quality, provide habitat for wildlife, require less chemical control, and serve as an environmental education site for students.”

Outside of the Batavia High School, Renz is the Vice President of the Batavia Education Association, which is a teacher’s union that supports school staff and personnel. For three years, Renz has been helping staff members in need of assistance with work-related issues. Besides this, Renz devotes his time to his two children by going to their volleyball, soccer, basketball games, track meets, musicals, and plays, which shows that he loves his children very much. When Renz isn’t with his children or at school, he enjoys his time alone by going for runs, playing old school Mario games, hanging out with his dog, and listening to many different types of music.

All in all, as the teachers and students in the interviews have said, Batavia High School wouldn’t have been the same without Renz, and it certainly wouldn’t have students whose lives are about bringing the natural world to the fabric of humanity. As Owen said, Renz has brought so much to the Batavia High School, and it’s a privilege to have someone so kind and effective working at this school.

“I think that Mr. Renz is a great teacher who really cares for his students and thoroughly teaches us his passion for the Earth,” said Kelly Thoman, one of his AP Environmental students.

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