Local News

LGHS voices appreciation for Shultz

by Alaina Fox

News Editor

Known throughout the Los Gatos community for his dedication and enthusiasm, biology teacher Alex Shultz has spent 27 years as a mentor at LGHS. Beyond vocabulary definitions and cell structures, Shultz teaches his students about the importance of understanding science’s role in the world around them. In doing so, he inspires students to utilize science as a means of affecting change. With the announcement of his retirement at the end of this school year, students, alumni, and staff members have been eager to express their gratitude for the many ways Shultz shaped LGHS.

Cathy Messenger

LGHS AP Biology and ASR Teacher, Dept Chair


“Alex Shultz is the reason why we were able to resurrect Advanced Science Research at LGHS. Before I started, there was some grant money to support several years of classes pursuing independent research and participation in the Synopsys Science Fair. Although the class lost its funding, Alex realized that this was something LGHS students should have and that I would love to teach the class. This meant we would need to be creative to get the funding we needed to support the small class size required for this type of project based learning. Alex connected us with a private foundation and they funded the class for its first 5 years. Next year will be the 10th year that I have been teaching ASR and each year I see the interest exceed capacity. Alex recognized this need and knew our students would be capable of amazing work. The awards record for the class speaks to this: over 180 awards have been earned at the local fair by the close to 200 LGHS students that have taken ASR since the Fall of 2011. Alex Shultz believes that our teachers and students are capable of much more than they realize and truly appreciates what LGHS has to offer to all of us. He is truly irreplaceable and will be missed!”

Brenna Fox

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“Thank you so much for being such an amazing teacher at LGHS. As an incoming freshman, I was worried about the increase in workload and rigor from my classes, but you were there to help all of us adjust. Every time I had a question or was confused, which was often, you happily helped me understand the concepts, free of judgment. Your enthusiasm and kindness in this class helped me find my passion in the sciences, and I am so grateful for that. Thank you for being one of the best teachers I’ve had; we will all miss you so much.”

Carol Li

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“Mr. Shultz was the first teacher I met during my time at Los Gatos High, and he set such a high standard. I would walk (or run, from being late) to his classroom every morning and look forward to whatever he had to teach that day because it was never only biology. He would combine his academic lessons with life lessons, historical facts, and personal anecdotes. I would always learn something new from his class, whether it was the details of the Krebs cycle, the importance of political literacy, or the true message of The Lorax. Beyond the knowledge I gained from his class, Mr. Shultz was a comforting presence in my freshman year. He would encourage me in trying times (the fly project), and congratulate me when I did well. His kindness never failed to amaze me, and I’m sure I’m not alone in missing his presence on campus.”

Avania Costello

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“Mr. Shultz was the teacher of my first difficult high school class. I walked in there on the first day of school with horror stories from my sister about how hard the class was going to be. From the infamous biosphere and fly projects to the grueling 200 question finals, Biology really tried me academically. However, Mr. Shultz’s teaching really got me through. Somehow he managed to teach me the difference between types of RNA and how to mate flies. He was a good teacher. He really tried his best for the students and was my favorite teacher from freshman year. I visited him the next year and he was super sweet and remembered me well. I know all of us will remember him the same way.”

Sharilyn Anheier

Physics Teacher


“Mr. Shultz, Congratulations on your retirement! Though I am sad that I was not able to learn from you and work with you more, I am so happy for you. Enjoy your life. Relax and spend time with your family, but know that you will be missed.”

Maddie Dewhirst

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“Mr. Shultz was one of the most influential teachers I’ve ever had. He not only taught science but he emphasized why it was important to be a scientifically literate person in society. It was unorthodox decisions like reading The Lorax in class to stress the importance of taking care of the environment that made him one of my favorite teachers. He went beyond simply teaching concepts like genetics, but also discussed the ethical considerations that have to be taken into account whenever new technology is developed. His clear passion for science was seen by his students and inspired many, including myself, to take more STEM classes. LGHS will miss him.”

Ruth Ann Kvamme

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“Mr Shultz, You believed in me through my entire freshman year. I will never forget when you told me how proud you were of me on the last day of school even though I never got a perfect grade. You celebrated student’s growth and improvement rather than their perfection which I believe is so much more valuable. I’ve learned lessons from you that go far beyond the topic of biology that will live with me forever. Thank you for your positive impact and the inspiration you have brought to so many students. You will be greatly missed.”

Janice Mortensen

Science Teacher

122F4750-409A-47F1-A62A-25FE2372DFAD (1)

“Mr. Shultz has been one of the most influential mentors I have had since I started teaching a few years ago. I work closely with and learn from him every day. I admire his dedication and his intuitive sense of what’s important. He is truly a master teacher who seamlessly weaves history, current events, and life lessons into his biology classes. He emphasizes that content is secondary, and that our job as teachers is to guide students to become better readers, writers and critical thinkers. He helps students understand how science works by doing science, and the content comes naturally. Mr. Shultz leaves a legacy of a purposefully crafted Honor’s Biology curriculum, which he has honed throughout his career. It is a rigorous, engaging, and relevant course that challenges students to develop their skills and has an impact on them throughout their education and their careers. I am honored to be a part of the team keeping that legacy alive and I will strive to integrate his tenets into my teaching. I will miss him dearly.”

Danielle Prawat

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“I had Mr. Shultz freshman year and I could not ask for a better bio/science teacher to have my first year at LGHS. I will miss saying hi to him at the football games, and looking at all the old biospheres in his classroom. His character and love of teaching really made bio enjoyable, and his ability to strive initiative into young students, like myself, will stay with me. I also want to tell him thank you for coming to a band concert I invited him to my freshman year, even though he had a staff meeting that night…but it was a combined concert with RJF and he actually only ended up being able to watch RJF and had to leave right as we got on stage to perform. Thank you, Mr. Shultz, for being such a memorable teacher and figure in my life. We’ll all miss you and we’ll continue to take the “kick-butt” line. Thank you!”

Crystal Huang

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“Mr. Schultz’s bio class made me appreciate life for what it is. He always brought a passion for the subject that was contagious and made biology fascinating. I was always so excited for what we were going to learn and each class was always fun. He’s definitely made a big impact on students and I’m grateful for the effort that he took in both teaching biology but for also making those lessons matter in our day to day lives.”

Jerry Zhao

LGHS Alumnus (Class of 2019)


“Hey Mr. Shultz, it’s Jerry. I still remember the day where you called me out for screwing around too much in class, and said that I had so much more to give than just that. Thanks to you, I’m now at UCSD, studying biology, and am researching in labs to try to make a difference in the world. Thank you for everything you’ve done for me, and all of Los Gatos High. What you’ve taught me about hard work and accountability will stick with me forever. Happy retirement, it’s our turn to pass on what you’ve given us.”

Nadia Miller

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“Freshmen year I was so nervous to take honors bio, but I’m so grateful that I got to have Mr. Schultz as my teacher. I learned so much from him and grew my passion for biology. He’s one of my favorite teachers.”

Priyanka Pulikeshi

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“Mr. Schultz is an amazing Biology teacher. As a freshman, I was quite nervous about Bio Honors, but it ended up being one of the most influential experiences of my life so far. He made the class engaging and interesting, while also providing a very solid foundation in the complex field of biology. Thank you for all you have done, Mr. Schultz!”

Justin Quan

LGHS Alumnus (Class of 2019)


“Mr. Shultz, thank you for being one of the most impactful moral figures within my life. You were one of the first people to ingrain in my head that all forms of science should be studied to better social, environmental, and human good, rather than in the pursuit of the often romanticized success that can come with it. You, more than anybody else, taught me of the importance of integrity and ethical decision-making, and these core values have motivated me to pursue my current path. Thank you for providing a truly formative education in my freshman year—your core values will stick with me for life as they have for the thousands of other students whom you’ve taught and influenced.”

Felicia Nguyen

LGHS Junior (Class of 2021)


“When I say Mr. Schultz has been one of the best teachers I’ve had, if not the best, I absolutely mean it. I’m sad to see him go, but the impact he’s had on me will undoubtedly remain. Teachers like him don’t come around often; I remember how he’d always perform a magic trick before every test to help ease our nerves and how he not only made biology fun and interesting, but applied what we were learning in class to our everyday world. He’s made me think of so many things in entirely new perspectives that I had never even considered or imagined before, from how racism really all boils down to a single genetic difference, to how we can start to solve the issue of overpopulation by educating girls around the world. It’s a true testament to the impact he’s made on me—I still remember all these things when I can barely remember what I ate for lunch sometimes. In fact, it’s through his class that I really discovered my passion for biology, and I’m grateful every day. All in all, he was such a kind, passionate teacher who believed in and cared about all of his students. Thank you for everything, Mr. Schultz. I wish you the best in the next chapter of your life.”


Leave a Reply