The English department at St. Thomas is devoted to helping students become confident, critical thinkers who communicate effectively and who will be both willing and able to make a difference in the world.
Through their study of important literary works in the survey courses at St. Thomas, students are exposed to exceptional writing and are introduced to a wide variety of cultures and ideas to broaden their perspectives and foster understanding and empathy for others. As students think, speak, and write about literature, they develop the ability to confidently create and support rational, intellectually-informed arguments. As they study great books, our students wrestle with fundamental questions about the human experience, developing the critical thinking skills needed to become active and effective leaders.
Grade 9: English 1, Advanced English 1, and English 9 (all World Literature and Composition)
Grade 10: English 2 and Advanced English 2 (all World Literature and Composition)
Grade 11: English 3 (American Literature and Composition) and AP English Language
Grade 12: English 4 (British Literature and Composition) and AP English Literature
Electives: Speech, Forensics 1-4, Creative Writing, Contemporary Research and Writing, Publications, Graphic Novels, Introduction to Journalism, and Photojournalism
David Fritsch (B.S. Political Science and History, Spring Hill College; M.A. in English, National University; graduate studies, University of St. Thomas and University of Houston) is a graduate of St. Thomas High School who has taught at STH since 1998. His 2019-2020 teaching assignments include Creative Writing, AP English Language and Composition, and English IV. David also serves as the assistant coach of the STH tennis team.
Judy Granberry (B.A. Plan II Honors, University of Texas at Austin; J.D., University of Houston Law Center; graduate studies, University of St. Thomas) started teaching at St. Thomas in 2008. Judy is Dean of the English Department, she currently holds the Master Teacher Chair for Curriculum Innovations, she was 2016-2017 STH Teacher of the Year, and she serves as a member of the STH Safety Committee. Her 2019-2020 teaching assignments include English 9 and Advanced English I.
Daniel Green (B.A. English, Spring Hill College; M.A. in Educational Leadership, Lamar University) has taught at St. Thomas since 2002. For sixteen years, Dan has served as Director of the St. Thomas Drama Program, and he currently holds the William A. and Mattie Jean Bernreider Master Teacher Chair for Musical Theater. For the 2019-2020 school year, his department teaching assignment is English IV; additionally, he teaches Theater 1, Theater 2, and Technical Theater.
Lauren McFetridge (B.A. English Education, California State University of Long Beach) joins the St. Thomas faculty this year. Prior to beginning her high school teaching career, Lauren instructed reading and writing courses for ELLs and for struggling readers at Donald S. Jordan Intermediate in Long Beach. She has a passion for learning and for supporting students in their social, emotional, and academic growth. In addition to teaching English 1 and English 3, Lauren will lend her services to the St. Thomas Ministry Department.
Jennifer McDonald (B.A. Mass Communications, Louisiana State University; M.A.T. Education, Nicholls State University; Ph.D. Catholic Education Leadership and Policy Studies, Catholic University of America) started teaching at St. Thomas in 2015. She serves as a member of the STH Faith Formation Committee. Her 2019-2020 teaching assignments include English I, English II, and English IV.
Claudia Mundell (B.A. English, St. Mary’s University; M.A. English, California State University of Long Beach; Principal Certification, University of St. Thomas) joined the St. Thomas faculty in 2014. Claudia represented St. Thomas at the Basilian Network for Education and the New Evangelization, and she currently serves on the STH Faith Formation Committee and on the Accreditation Committee. For the 2019-2020 school year, her teaching assignments include English I and AP English Literature and Composition.
Will Nash (B.A. English, Texas A&M University; M.A. English, National University) started teaching at St. Thomas in 2005. Will serves as faculty adviser of the Aquin Yearbook, of The Eagle News Magazine, and of The Eagle Online website. His teaching assignments for 2019-2020 include Advanced English II, Publications, Introduction to Journalism, and Photojournalism.
Steve Pothier (B.A. Philosophy and the Liberal Arts, St. Joseph Seminary College) started teaching at St. Thomas in 2017. His 2019-2020 teaching assignments include English II and English III.
Darrell Yarbrough (B.S. Speech Communications, Stephen F. Austin State University; graduate studies, University of Houston) began teaching at St. Thomas in 2015. Darrell coaches the STH Debate team, serves as an assistant coordinator of the TAPPS academic team, and assists the St. Thomas admissions team. He currently holds the Strake Master Teacher Chair for Public Speaking and Debate. His 2019-2020 teaching assignments include Forensics, Speech, and English.