Degrees and Certifications:

Mr. Frank Thomas Cortez

Hello all,

My name is Thomas Cortez. I have been teaching Math for 6 years and am excited about teaching my first year at Plano ISD. I have been a Math fan for as long as I can remember. I truly believe that while some have an affinity for math, being a natural is not as important as being confident and working through problems. With hard work, I believe that any student can achieve their goals. I have wanted to be a teacher since high school, with my final senior project being to create a Math curriculum for students with ADHD. I attended college at Texas A&M University, where I graduated a year early in 2015 with a major in Psychology. I then attended the University of North Texas for my Master's of Education, graduating in 2017. As a teacher, I try to work on being able to explain things as simply as I can, drawing inspiration from a quote by Albert Einstein that "if you can't explain (something) simply, then you don't know it well enough".

My hobbies include rock climbing, music, and basketball. I have been rock climbing for 10 years and it is truly my passion outside of teaching. My music love stems from my father who was a drummer in an "ok at best" rock band in his mid 20's and his father, who was in a mildly successful Mariachi band until he couldn't play guitar any more. I myself have been playing guitar since I was 7 and have found love for other instruments such as piano, drums, and my voice. My basketball fandom was sparked by the amazing 2006 Mavericks Championship run that had young Mr. Cortez crying himself to sleep as the referees called a uniquely unfair game that sent my then arch nemesis Dwayne Wade to the free throw line 25, 21, and 18 times in a three-game strech. The Mavericks were able to stay vigilant through some rough postseasons after, until they were eventually able to bring home a championship in 2011. A then high school junior Mr. Cortez was happy to watch game six with his friends at American Airlines Center as the Mavericks were able to win the finals in Miami despite a stacked Heat lineup that included Lebron James. Dwayne Wade, and Texas Native Chris Bosh. Needless to say, I look forward to all future Mavericks Championships, one of which I know will include my current favorite Maverick, Luka Doncic. 

Thank you for listening to my TED talk and I look forward to a great school year and will be working hard to provide every student that comes into my classroom with a quality education. If you have any questions or feel I need to know anything, please reach out to me and I will be happy to hear from you.

Frank Thomas Cortez

Schimelpfenig Middle School
8th Grade Math | Algebra