Park welcomes new English teacher

Mx. Marlin offers new perspectives


Ena Mekic

Mx. Marlin helps freshman Lexa Rischall with an English assignment. Marlin provides one-on-one help to students during class. 

Ena Mekic

Several new English teachers joined the staff at Park this year, one of them being Mx. Marlin. They previously taught at a middle school in St. Paul, and now teach ninth grade English and Honors English. They said they are excited to teach older students and looking forward to the future at Park.

“I ended up becoming a teacher because my first job ever was a gymnastics coach for little toddlers. I figured out very quickly that I loved sharing skills, watching people grow and learning new things,” Marlin said. “I just fell in love with coaching and as I got a little bit older, I realized the natural career move from there would be to go into teaching.”

Marlin said they are excited and impressed by the drive and community of students at Park. 

“My students are so justice minded. They care a lot about real world issues and want to talk and write about them,” Marlin said. “There’s a very motivated student body here that wants to make positive change and I love that.”

Another new teacher, Mr. Haen, said Marlin is a great friend and colleague. 

“Marlin is very sociable, when you talk to them you don’t feel down afterwards. As we are both new teachers, there have been times where I’ve asked Mx. Marlin for support and they have been there for me,” Haen said. “I also feel like getting new faces to the school brings a new perspective to things.”

Marlin said they have a specific energy they want to create in the classroom. Their values are crucial in creating a successful learning environment. 

“Community and joy are both two values that I hold really dear to my heart as a teacher. I want my classroom to feel like a close community where it feels supportive and where we feel like we can be vulnerable and take risks,” Marlin said. “I want it to feel fun because I think that if you’re not laughing, you’re not learning.”

According to freshman Lexa Rischall, Marlin creates a positive and uplifting environment in their classes. 

“Marlin’s class is a safe space. When you walk into their classroom, you’re immediately like, ‘I’m not scared or intimidated by this person,’” Rischall said. “The feedback they give on writing is really nice. When you want a certain tone for a scene, they give you actually good advice on it. They don’t just give you the answer, they make you think about it and let you figure it out yourself.”

Marlin also became involved in the LGBTQ+ courses at the school. They ran the Gender Sexuality Alliance (GSA) at their old school and said becoming the leader of Park’s GSA was a perfect fit.

“I hosted an Action Wednesday that was kind of like a GSA space, so I got some ideas from the people who were in it about how to launch GSA and how to get the word out,” Marlin said. “It’s a space for students who identify as LGBTQ or students who identify as allies to the LGBTQ community to come together and be themselves, and to not feel like they have to put up a front or have a filter on when they’re talking.” 

Marlin said GSA is something they’re proud of and hope to see grow. 

“My hope with the GSA is that this is something that can turn into a collective action to make the school a better space for our queer and trans students, because we always have room to improve,” Marlin said.

Marlin said they encourage people to join GSA as everyone is welcome and no registration is required, the attendance at meetings remain anonymous. 

“People can sign up by just showing up. After school Wednesday’s I will be in my room for GSA, and sometimes I’ll have snacks,” Marlin said.

GSA meets every Wednesday in C371 from 3:15-4:30 p.m.