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March 27, 2024

Robert Schooley brings the Real World to Badin business students

Talk to Badin High School business teacher Robert Schooley for awhile and the phrase “Real World” comes up a lot.

“I try to relate stories back to the Real World, and the students are free to share their opinions,” Schooley said. “When you bring the Real World into the classroom, the students can see the benefits right away.”

Schooley is wrapping up his fourth year at BHS, and his extensive business offerings have been popular electives at the Catholic high school in Hamilton.

“I’m passionate about what I’m teaching, and the kids listen to me,” Schooley said. “I open doors for them. They walk through those doors and they see the opportunities.”

Schooley, who has a deep easy listening voice that makes you pay attention, said it was another voice that made him pay attention to what he was going to do with his life. His wife, pregnant with what was their first of now six daughters, walked into the cafeteria at Morehead State University one day and shouted at him in front of the whole room, “Pick a field!”

“I was all over the place,” the former football offensive lineman smiled. “I was in Real Estate, Law Enforcement, Business, whatever. But I was good at standing in front of people and talking, so I said, let’s be a teacher!”

“What I wanted to do was have an impact,” Schooley added, and he’s been doing that for 17 years, earlier at high schools in northern Kentucky before applying for the business opening at Badin during Covid.

“I needed a change,” he nodded. “At first, it was a difficult adjustment, because I was used to kids needing me. But I really like the atmosphere at Badin – it’s a community of togetherness. There are so many wonderful kids with so many great ideas.”

A graduate of Fisher Catholic High in Lancaster, Ohio, with a degree in Business Information Technology from Morehead State, Schooley has a lot of chances to exchange ideas each day. His teaching load includes Accounting, Advertising & Social Media, Business Foundations, Business Management, Marketing, Sports & Entertainment Marketing, and a Robotics class that started at four students and now has two sections of more than 30 apiece with two teachers involved.

And Schooley, whose wife, Erin, is a Math and Science teacher at St. Bernadette in Amelia, had the welcoming atmosphere confirmed when he walked into the Badin Prom one night and nearly all of the senior boys started chanting, “Schoo-ley! Schoo-ley!”

“Robert Schooley came to Badin at a crucial time after we lost a legend with the death of (longtime business and marketing teacher) Mr. Joe DeAngelo,” BHS Principal Patrick Keating said. “From Day One, Mr. Schooley came in with a plan to ensure that students continued to have an incredible experience within our business and marketing program. His passion and zeal for mentoring students, giving them opportunities in the workforce and guiding them through their four years of high school and beyond is second to none.”

He expects his Accounting students to be able to write a resume and cover letter and be prepared to interview by the time the class is completed. His students take various field trips over the year for Real World preparation.

“I enjoy the variety of classes, but it’s difficult,” Schooley said. “You have to know a lot of information, because it’s constantly changing.

“The new world of AI is scary to people, and I get that,” he noted. “But I need to get into the world of AI and teach it to my kids. They need to understand how businesses are using it because there’s a good side of AI for business.”

Schooley – who is also an assistant football coach at Dixie Heights (Ky.) High – has made the extracurricular Business Professionals of America (BPA) a worthy successor to the longtime DECA program that preceded it at Badin.

“It’s really grown because of the kids,” he said, noting that it has gone from four students his first year to 30 this year, with 15 students qualifying for the state BPA Conference. Senior Shelby Mulcare is now eligible for the National Conference. “It’s all about word of mouth. It took off because of how cool it is.”

Schooley tells his classes that there are Steak Days and there are Chicken Nugget Days, and they always wonder what sort of day it will be.

“Steak Days are always great days,” he said. “Chicken Nugget Days are those days that no matter what sauce you dip it into, it’s still going to be a chicken nugget. But it’s still important material that we need to cover.”

Contact: Dirk Q. Allen, or (513) 869-4490

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Robert Schooley brings the Real World to Badin business students