A Couple of Facts About Our Faculty Couples

A tribute to our teacher couples just in time for Valentine’s Day


E. Johnson

The lesson today is all about the stories of our school’s faculty couples.

Ella Johnson, Staff Writer

In light of the season of conversation hearts, Cupid, flowers, and soon-to-be empty boxes of chocolate, I interviewed some of DCHS’s very own faculty couples. The interviews centered around five main questions: when they met, how long they have been together, any hesitancy working at the same place, the best and worst things about working together, and student reactions. While each couple has a unique story, there were common themes among them. For example, they all appreciate the ease of communicating while working together at DCHS. I truly enjoyed interviewing the teachers and am appreciative of their willingness to share.

The Flood Story

The Floods were both first-year teachers and met in 2015 at the teacher orientation day. While Mrs. Flood doesn’t recall the exact moment, Mr. Flood remembers her “peppy” attitude. So peppy that he did not think they would get along. The two ended up being desk neighbors in the teacher’s room, and they naturally began talking. As new teachers, they often spent evenings and weekends at DCHS, and their relationship grew. In December 2015, they officially started dating. The start of their relationship also brought the start of student rumors. When students questioned their relationship status, the Floods always owned the fact that they were dating because, as Mr. Flood explained, “You have to be proud of it, even if it kills the fun of a secret.” Today, students are not often surprised to find out that the Floods are a couple. That being said, since Fr. Flood has joined the DCHS community, students can struggle to comprehend that he is Mr. Flood’s brother and that Mr. Flood is married to Mrs. Flood. Even if students find things confusing, both Mr. and Mrs. Flood value the clear and easy communication that comes with working at the same place. Mrs. Flood adds that spending time at school events is more enjoyable when both partners know the students on the court, field, or stage. They are grateful to have met at DCHS and to have each other in their lives, at school, and home. 

The Parriott Story

The Parriotts celebrated ten years together before becoming a staff couple at DCHS. After meeting at Drake in 2003, Mr. Parriott worked for the Des Moines Buccaneers for nearly ten years. It was Mrs. Parriott’s experience with teaching that inspired Mr. Parriott to go back to school and pursue a career in teaching. Initially, there was some apprehension about hiring a couple, but soon the economics dream team had their DCHS debut. In Mr. Parriott’s words, “We both wanted to work at Dowling because we just knew it is a better spot to be.” The Parriotts are in a unique position because they not only work at the same place, but teach the same subject, leading to conference mix-ups, students going to the wrong classroom on the first days of school, and receiving misaddressed football or track emails. There was one instance, however, where Mrs. Parriott received all of her husband’s summer school pay (an instance that she may have found more amusing than him). One of their favorite memories at DCHS is when Mrs. Parriott revealed her pregnancy to Mr. Parriott, right in the same classroom that she teaches in today. Soon, DCHS will be a family affair, as both of Mr. and Mrs. Parriott’s daughters plan to attend and experience for themselves all of the great things that DCHS has to offer.

The Selinger Story

For Mr. and Mrs. Selinger, working together was no question. They’ve worked on various art projects and side jobs together since meeting at the Grand View art department ten years ago. In college, she pursued studio art, while he focused on graphic design. Now, the two put their experience to use by continuing to create art outside of school and by teaching here at DCHS. It was their familiar collaboration that led to Mrs. Selinger encouraging Mr. Selginer to start substitute teaching at DCHS in the first place. With that in mind, there can be some trials with getting to school. Mrs. Selinger explains that she is a very timely person; whereas, he has a tendency to run on the latter side. Even so, the highs outweigh the lows. For example, since Mrs. Selinger has her planning period during lunch, she can always have lunch with Mr. Selinger, despite his variable schedule as a sub. Because Mr. Selinger is not a full-time teacher, some students don’t always realize that they are a couple, but others recognize their common last names right away. Now, the couple has grown into a family, as the Selingers welcomed their first child this past year.

The Peterson Story

Since last fall, the Petersons agree that they have seen a lot more of each other. Although they have been together for almost thirteen years after meeting through mutual friends, Mr. Peterson jokes that Mrs. Peterson is “invading his turf.” With all kidding aside, Mr. Peterson actually encouraged Mrs. Peterson to start working at DCHS, and she now teaches as a long-term sub in the P.E. department. Not only does the couple work at the same place, but they also share the same planning period, carpool (lending Mr. Peterson a warmer alternative to riding his bike), and in the words of Mrs. Peterson, “have a lunch date every other day.” Working routines are not the only change in the Peterson household. The couple has had to adapt to a more hectic morning routine and get ready for their school day simultaneously. When in the classroom, almost everyone enrolled in yoga or lifeguarding with Mrs. Peterson or Mr. Peterson’s Spanish classes know that the two are married. There was one day, however, when Mrs. Peterson had to sub for none other than Mr. Peterson. The students noticed her last name and asked if she knew Mr. Peterson. She responded, “Well yeah, I’m his wife. My picture is on his desk.” Soon, the couple plans to add a more tropical photo to their desks when they visit Costa Rica with their daughters for the first time. It will be a trip where they can spend even more time together, just a few thousand miles south.

Our teachers may have given a new definition to “high school sweethearts,” but however you love and whomever you love, all of us at the Dowling Catholic Post are wishing you a very Happy Valentine’s Day.

Click on the image to view “then and nows” of the faculty couples!