Chef Schuler: When a Classroom Doubles as a Kitchen


John Michael Carter

Schuler in the corner of his classroom that has become a kitchen.

John Michael Carter, Staff Writer

Walking down the social studies hallway on the school’s second floor early in the morning, a distinct maple scent often wafts through the air. A passerby’s stomach may grumble and their mouth may become dry. 

This scent and feeling are the product of Social Studies Department Chair Mark Schuler’s classroom kitchen. In the area behind his desk, Schuler has an air fryer, microwave, toaster and griddle. 

Although he is packing up his appliances for the end of the school year, Schuler often cooked breakfast foods, such as scrambled eggs, sausage, hashbrowns and omelets in his classroom. 

Although he won’t dish his secrets, he said he likes to put diced ham and peppers to give his omelets — a Western twist. 

He started his “kitchen” when school was once again face-to-face after COVID-19. Since not as much time was spent giving instruction, Schuler decided to prepare breakfast in his classroom. He also said he preferred this rather than eating breakfast at home and then having to fight traffic. 

His collection of appliances and ingredients continues to grow. A new addition from this school year is his air fryer. 

Government teacher James Campbell, whose classroom is down the hall from Schuler’s, said Schuler’s configuration is “top notch” and his food looks and smells great. Campbell’s culinary talents include microwaving leftovers he eats during his workday. 

U.S. History teacher Sarah Haynie, who is Schuler’s hallway neighbor, said she smells his cooking about once every week, usually a maple scent, presumably from his sausage.  

“I’m jealous of his set-up,” she said.