New German teacher welcomed to A-West


Maddy River

A-West German teacher Michael Pokorny.

The German teacher last year, Ms. Kaiser, left. The teacher now is Michael Pokorny.

Pokorny has taught for 19 years, 18 at Standley Lake High School, where he retired from, and a little at Metro State University and Pomona High School. He then got a call from A-West about needing a German teacher. Pokorny says he was looking everywhere for a teacher to fill the position at A-West and didn’t get the responses he was hoping for. He says that he posted it on his Facebook and direct messaged some people who he thought that would be able to fill the position.

He says, “I was rehearsing my speech for talking someone into taking the job, and I ended up talking myself into it.”

He was talking about it with his wife and she asked if he would be able to live with himself if he did not take the job. He thought about this and decided to call the school and take the job days before the school year started.

Pokorny speaks four languages: German, Spanish, Slovak, and English.

“By lucky accident I became quadrilingual,” Pokorny said. 

His family roots are Slovakian. He says that his parents would speak privately in German, which is part of why he wanted to learn it. The other part is because when he would visit relatives in Germany, he got began to love the language and decided that he should learn it. He said he had many advantages when learning it, and that is how he got so attached to the language.

In regards to his decision to teach German, Pokorny says, “We made a financial decision, I get to do the thing I wanted to do all my life because we had a good income and the house was paid for and I do not regret the decision. It was the right decision for me and I was very fortunate.”

He also says that “I fell in love with the literature when I was young, and started going over there to see family and I was hooked. Totally hooked.”

He loves the language and has good circumstances where he can do what he loves, teach German.