Chester Janiga - Retired Faculty & Staff - McDonogh School

Chester Janiga

Come September, Allan Room 123 will not be the same. For the first time in nearly three decades, it will have a new occupant.

Chet Janiga, a deeply committed teacher-coach, and former dorm parent, spent 29 years teaching ninth-grade World History and eleventh-grade US History in that room. Year in and year out, he made his mark by meeting students where they were, building their academic and personal confidence, and creating excitement for his subject. And while the dates and the events remained the same, his lessons were reinvented with new projects, new assignments, and new ways to help students hone their skills. 

Since 1993, Mr. Janiga has been a coach in the classroom and on the fields. His optimism and sense of humor made him the kind of person kids wanted to learn from and colleagues wanted to work with each day. As often as you could hear his booming voice echoing through the halls of Allan as he coached his class to think more deeply, you could also pass by his classroom and see him intensely focused in a one-on-one conference with a student.  

An inspiration on the field, Coach Janiga served as an assistant varsity and JV football coach and led the varsity baseball team for 12 years. He exemplifies what it means to be a committed and caring teammate, and his record is nearly perfect—in all his years of coaching, he never missed a season of football and only recalls one spring when he wasn’t on the baseball diamond.

Throughout his career, Mr. Janiga has taken each of his roles seriously and has been described as “the consummate colleague and friend: caring, thoughtful, helpful, kind, funny, and loyal.” 

When asked what he will miss the most about teaching, Mr. Janiga emphatically states, “Laughing with kids in my classroom.”

Thank you, Chet, for your dedication, humor, and friendship over the span of an inspiring 29 years in Allan Room 123 and on the fields.