A look into the not-so-intimidating Mr. Riley.


“Focused, intense, but inviting at the same time” are just a few words that Terry Riley uses to describe his presence in a classroom. Since entering his second year as a world literature teacher at PCHS, he is constantly motivating his students by treating them maturely and giving them as much responsibility as they can take while displaying to them the gratification that comes with independence. After years of coaching football, he has a lot of practice with motivating his students and driving them to reach their goals. 

The challenge of getting students to enjoy something they would not usually enjoy is one reason Riley loves the teaching environment. Though that challenge can be frustrating at times, especially since he often finds himself caring more about the student’s success than they do, he still adores teaching students and helping them find immense pleasure at school. 

His long-term goal as a teacher is to create a desire to want to learn and think outside of the box that will last his students a lifetime. He states, “I have 152 students that are all different, I can’t make a SMART goal to get them. I have to adapt, adjust, respond, and react to what they need and what they want.” 

He is constantly acknowledging his students' feelings and ideas, creating a strong connection between him and his students. Even though he doesn’t envision himself teaching in the next five years, he has other exciting plans for his future such as spending time with his grandchildren.