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Hay, James » Home


Welcome to my web page. I am both privileged and pleased to be teaching in high school once again. I have been teaching in the PYLUSD system since 2000, but , for the first eight years, at the junior high level. Although I thoroughly enjoyed those years and the colleagues with whom I worked, I am finding that returning to the high school level is to be at the place where I am most appropriately gifted and fulfilled. I am so glad to be here and realizing first hand what others have regularly affirmed - that YLHS is a great school and a great place to teach.
I love the subjects that I teach - Literature/Language Arts at the junior and senior level.  I find the literature intriguing, the discussion topics invigorating and the writing expectations challenging.  I thoroughly enjoy the interaction opportunities with my students on both the academic and personal levels. But I also am enlivened by the privilege of communicating not only literature realities but life - impacting truths as well.  Thus it is that certain fundamental principles undergird my lessons and activities: first, that if one ever stops learning, they are already dead. Thus I seek to make my classes lively and "fun".Second, that no one will care how much you know until they know how much you care. Consequently, it is a priority for me to seek to know my students as individuals, not merely names on a roster or scores in a grade book. Third, what you are (your character) is vastly more important than what you get (your score). Thus I endeavour to always model a life of integrity and a demeanour of graciousness and compassion.  As I am able to communicate realities on both levels, the academic and the personal, I believe that I will not only be successful as a teacher, something that is important, but I will also, most crucially, be significant in the lives of my students, that is, I will impact them for their betterment and fulfillment in their lives ahead.  It is in doing these things that I find my satisfaction and flesh out the purpose for which I have been created.
But I am not only a teacher. I am a husband to Elayne, just a great lady, for 50 years now, father of several children and now, such a great joy, grandfather to others as well. I also serve at Saddleback Church, Lake Forest, as the pastor of the Traditions worship venue as well as counseling in the Pastoral Care department. In my spare time I am an avid reader, a carver of walking sticks and an antique buff. I also enjoy camping in our 1954 vintage trailer and going to the beach.