"Do Not Let This Course Freak You Out"

Mr. Steve Gustas walks through the AP Spanish Literature and Culture class on the first day of school, greeting each student in Spanish and asking questions. 

So what exactly goes on in Advance Placement Spanish Literature and Culture class on the first day of school?  It begins with the kind of laughter only teacher, Steve Gustas can induce, but having set the tone for the class, one of involved and engaging learning, Mr. Gustas quickly moved on to explain the class.

“Do not let the course freak you out.  Yes, it’s a lot of work, but if you can get a passing score on an AP test you can get college credit,” he told his students.  By the beginning of January the students will need to decide if they want to take the test.  “It’s not required,” said Mr. Gustas, “but I’ll be honest with you, I think you can do well on it.  We will practice in here and we will spend a lot of time in the computer lab,” he explained.

Students received their textbooks, which are written entirely in Spanish and reviewed the objectives of the class, as well as the required book and poetry reading that is at the heart of the course.  Mr. Gustas eased some fears as he reminded his students that he understands that they; “have to sleep, have to eat, have sports or other activities they’re involved in, may have a job, and I hope you have some sort of social life.”  With that understanding, however is the simple truth that AP students are held to a high standard and hard work is expected in the year ahead.  He explained ways that the students can make the best use of their time and available resources to be successful in the class.

A complete syllabus was passed out to the students that outlined the week by week work that needs to be completed.   Even on the first day of school, you could feel confidence growing as Mr. Gustas simultaneously offered challenges and encouragement in equal doses.  We can’t wait to watch these students shine or perhaps; “No podemos esperar a ver a estos estudiantes brillan,..we'll have to ask Mr. Gustas!

Getting To Know Principal West

Just prior to coming to Hanover Central High School as Assistant Principal in 2013, Mary Ann West served as the Assistant Principal at Christ The King College Preparatory High School on the west side of Chicago.  In 2014, Ms. West began serving as Principal of HCHS.  She is a graduate of Crete-Monee High School, earned a B.A. in History from Northern Illinois University as well as Master’s degrees in Secondary Education and Education Administration from Governor’s State University.  Ms. West is currently working on her doctorate in Executive Organizational Leadership & Policy at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign.   Ms. West, an educator since 1995, is certified in both Indiana and Illinois, and has served as a Teacher, Dean of Students, Assistant Principal and Middle School Principal in both parochial and public schools. 

As the parent of a college graduate daughter, Principal West is well aware of the challenges faced by students today that didn’t even exist a generation ago.  “The influence of social media takes the innocence of childhood away too soon.  Kids are bombarded by so many issues and topics they shouldn’t have to deal with or be exposed to.  It makes it very challenging at times for them to even concentrate in school,” she said. 

Ms. West believes bringing structure, school pride, and expanding school programs are some her greatest accomplishments.  “I’m clear about expectations for students.  I look at each student as an individual.  I’ve always been consistent in issuing discipline.  Whether it’s the homecoming queen or the class clown, students know the same consequence is given.  I let them find their way, within parameters, and in a secure environment I build relationships.  I believe it’s important for our students to know and continue school traditions—this builds school pride and a love for their high school.  Lastly, I believe in our school mission of “striving to create a positive environment where all are challenged to achieve their potential”.  Annually, we strive to expand our class programming to meet all student needs—the college-bound to the career-ready graduate”.

The most important message a child can hear from an educator says West is, “We are concerned about their total well-being and success, not just academically.  Everything that goes into making them who they are-- we care about.” 

 Hanover Community School Corporation Mission, Vision, and Beliefs 


Making a difference…realizing potential


 Hanover Community School Corporation realizes the individuality of each student and is committed to providing a safe and positive atmosphere for learning. The collaboration of dedicated staff and the community allows Hanover Community School Corporation to create a literacy-rich environment and facilitate high quality instruction for all students. A challenging curriculum, well-equipped facilities and relevant technology optimize achievement, empowering all students to realize their potential for success in a global society.


1.       Every student has the capacity to learn and grow academically with involvement and support from the school system, the community, and parents/guardians. 

2.       Students are best served by creating multiple pathways leading to a successful transition to postsecondary education or employment opportunities. 

3.       Consistent parent/teacher communication and involvement creates a collaborative relationship that supports the child’s social and academic growth. 

4.       Teaching should have clear goals focused on learning. 

5.      Learning is enhanced by the development of life skills such as problem-solving, critical thinking, and peer collaboration. 

6.       A strong school staff is reflective and honest, holding each other accountable and supporting one another. 

7.       Staff members, as valuable contributors to the school community, must model ethical behavior, exhibit a strong work ethic, and perform at high levels. 

8.       The community is a core component of a successful school system and respects the dignity, worth, and opinions of every individual in the community. 

9.       Financial expenditures are aligned with the goals of this district. 

10.   Fiscal responsibility is essential to meet and sustain the educational needs of students. 

11.   Students and staff benefit from a safe, orderly and well-maintained learning environment. 

12.   Future facility needs are based on the corporation’s long-range plan. 

13.   Appropriate integration of technology into the curriculum is essential in preparing students to be competitive in a global society. 

14.   Extra-curricular activities are important in providing opportunities for social growth and personal achievement beyond the classroom.  


If you need assistance in other areas,below are some names of staff members that are here and ready to help you:


Principal: Ms. Mary Ann West, mwest@hanover.k12.in.us

Principal's Secretary/Main Office Manager: Pam Gentz - pgentz@hanover.k12.in.us
Assistant Principal/Athletic Director: Kevin Bachinski - kbachinski@hanover.k12.in.us 

Dean of Students: Lori Bathurst - lbathurst@hanover.k12.in.us

School Resource Officer: Lane Linder - llinder@hanover.k12.in.us

Bookkeeper: Diane Kickert - dkickert@hanover.k12.in.us 

Guidance Counselor (Grade 11-12) : Miss Monica Kazda - mkazda@hanover.k12.in.us
Guidance Counselor (Grade 9-10):   Mr. Ryan Adamski - radamski@hanover.k12.in.us

Health Services Coordinator: Stephanie Owen - sowen@hanover.k12.in.us 
Attendance Clerk: Mrs. Lynn Almaguer - lalmaguer@hanover.k12.in.us 

Guidance Assistant:  Mrs. Diana Furman - dfurman@hanover.k12.in.us




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