Brendan Flanagan

Upper School English Teacher


  • B.A. in Literature, International Studies, and Human Rights & Peace Studies, Ramapo College
  • M.A. in English with Concentration in Irish Literature & Culture, Boston College

Certified Microsoft Innovative Educator Trainer; Summer Fellow at the Klingenstein Summer Institute at Teachers College and Columbia University

“What impresses me most about our students is their willingness to take risks, whether by voicing their thoughts in a class discussion or trying something new on a project. Their desire to put themselves out there is truly inspiring, and I look forward to seeing what else our Knights have in store in the future.”

Mr. Flanagan views teaching as the highest of callings.

“Like nurses and doctors, who help people with their physical health, teachers help people progress with their intellectual and emotional health,” says Brendan. “I felt drawn to helping others discover their own talents and skills, which led me to teaching. What I like about my position is being able to work with our students through text – whether famous authors’ or my students’ – and seeing their appreciation for language grow.”

Each day, while driving to GSB, Brendan looks forward to seeing the picturesque campus as well as its people. “I feel lucky to work on such a stunning property, and whenever I can, I get out and see the beautiful natural settings our campus has to offer. The true heart of GSB, though, is the people, especially our students. I enjoy seeing my students each day and leave each class feeling fortunate to be part of that learning community.”

His most memorable campus moments center around his students’ successes, such as a nervous student conquering that pesky public speaking fear. Brendan wholeheartedly believes that his students can do anything if given the right resources. “Modeling idealism is one of the most powerful acts of teaching someone can do.” And as for his favorite teaching quote – Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire – it is often misattributed to the Irish Poet, William Butler Yeats. “While the sentiment in the quote is certainly true, its misattribution also impels students to learn to question material, find reliable sources, and determine truth for themselves.”