Social studies teacher and varsity basketball coach Frank Knight has been a high school teacher and coach for 20 years, with 9 of those years at Moreau. He graduated from St. Mary’s College of California with a degree in communications, where he also was a point guard on the basketball team. He later received his teaching credential from Holy Names University.
After teaching and coaching at his alma mater Fremont High School in Oakland for 10 years, he wanted another challenge and joined the Moreau faculty as a teacher and coach. That first year, he turned the varsity boys’ basketball team around from a 2-24 record to winning 18 games and was honored as HAL Coach of the Year. Each of his Moreau teams have won 20 games with the 2014 and 2016 teams making it to the state championship and Knight receiving California Coach of the Year honors in 2014.
He sees this year’s team as a bit different with no big-name players, but believes that this may be his best team yet as “there are no individual stars and they play as a team.”
Knight sees basketball and sports in general as a way to teach life lessons. “You have to be on time for practice just like at work; playing team sports prepares you to work with people you may not like; you need to set goals for yourself; and team sports teach you how your role can make the team better and that your teammates are there to help you.”
As a teacher, he considers himself a “history geek” and a voracious reader of historical novels and documentaries while also watching the history channel. He recently completed “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership” by James Comey, “Fear – Trump in the White House,” by Bob Woodward, and his next book to read will be “Becoming,” by Michelle Obama. His teaching philosophy is to design a curriculum that aligns with where his students are academically.
“I am not one to stand in front of the class and teach,” he said. “I design activities for the students, seminars and debates.”
For example, recently his economic students learned about supply demand, pricing floors and ceilings and taxes as part of card game that reinforced these principles studied in class.
“I try to be authentic and my real self in class,” Knight said.
He added, “our job as a teacher is to be a springboard for the kids to get to where they want to go next, whether that is junior college, a university, playing basketball in college or something else.”