Meet Two New Members of the SHS Staff

New SHS Staff Member Jessica Reap

Ananya Kotian and Danica Stalteri

Every year at Stamford High School, new members become part of the staff. One new member this year is David Lapolla, a math teacher from Peekskill, New York. He graduated from the State University of New York after a couple of years at the Georgia Institute of Technology.  

Lapolla teaches algebra, geometry and precalculus here at Stamford High. He has been teaching since 1996, previously at Cloonan Middle School, Stamford Academy, and the Bronx for 18 years.

Lapolla is satisfied with the environment here at Stamford High so far. He says, “I like it. The adults have been very kind and helpful. The students have been responsive and respectful.”

Although teaching this year can be strange because of COVID-19, Lapolla is used to it. The year he began teaching at Cloonan was the year that got cut short because of the pandemic, so starting here at Stamford High feels a little more normal to him. Lapolla says teaching at a high school is much calmer than teaching at a middle school.  

Lapolla has three daughters and a stepson. He has a lot more free time to spend with them this year than usual because it is his first year in a long time not coaching football.  

Lapolla likes teaching math because he has a passion for seeing kids learn and understand the material. “The fact that most people don’t like it, or feel like they can’t do it, explaining it and seeing the light bulb go off is exciting.”

Another new member of the SHS staff is Jessica Reap. Originally from White Plains, New York, Reap teaches freshman, junior, and senior English in Room 924.

Although she is new to Stamford High, Reap is not new to Stamford Public Schools and previously taught at Scofield Magnet Middle School and Westhill High School, choosing to come to Stamford High after budget cuts at Westhill. She says that she likes Stamford High so far and that the people are very gracious. 

If she could teach any subject other than English, Reap says it would be drama, a subject that she used to teach. She has a passion for acting and is a former actress and director. She has an eccentric personality, influenced by her involvement in drama, which she says makes her “pretty weird in a good way.”