School is an interesting place. And it’s become way more interesting, especially during these times of online learning. Instead of wondering where your classes are, you’re now wondering where the Zoom link is and navigating the unending assignment tabs on Google Classroom. Our teachers have it tough, but one teacher, who also doubles as a National Guard member, still manages to find time to teach his band class!
Online school is tough and there are some classes that you can’t do unless you’re in-person. More specifically, Band. I love Band. Band is in my top 5 favorite subjects in school! As you know, you can’t really have Band online. Too many issues with technology and terrible WiFi. Now this teacher here, he somehow managed to find a way to teach his students virtually, all while away protecting the capitol as a member of the National Guard. Out of all the teachers, D.C. National Guard Sgt. Jacob Kohut deserves MVP. Kohut, 34, is one of the more than 20,000 National Guard troops who provided security as part of a massive operation in D.C. ahead of President Joe Biden’s inauguration. During his deployment to Washington, which started on Jan. 13, Kohut worked as a national guard member and a dedicated band teacher at public schools in Fairfax County Virginia.
This Military musician and teacher spent the first part of his morning conducting virtual band class. Starting at 10 a.m, his 12-hour Guard shift began, working on the front lines to thwart potential threats, following the deadly insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th. He arrived in D.C. first thing in the morning to teach his elementary class remotely from the drill floor of the D.C. Armory, finishing the lesson mere minutes before his Guard shifts began. Later, he would go online during his break to teach his middle school students from the back of a Humvee. Kohut has been in the military for 11 years as part of the 257th army band, where he plays bassoon and saxophone.
It’s incredible, what Kohut is doing, teaching his students all while being in the armed forces. Teaching is a very tough job, especially band, which itself requires a lot of drive and determination. On top of that, being the country’s security requires a lot of focus and will. Kohut is doing both at the same time! To be able to teach and protect the country at the same time must require massive amounts of drive and determination. I struggle to get out of bed every morning and hop online for class. I can’t imagine waking up every morning and immediately teaching a whole class for a few hours, going out for daily duties as a National Guard member, and then coming back and teaching a group of students again! He’s using up all the breaks that he gets to teach his students, which shows you that he really cares about them and that he wants to see them succeed. That right there is what makes a hero. Not all heroes wear capes, and Kohut is a prime example of exactly that.