About Me

 The Back Story

I was born October 9, 1971, at the old Kaiser Hospital in Santa Clara. I grew up locally, attending local sme_about_2chools, riding my bike to Central Park, hanging out at the Benton St. Seven-Eleven for Slurpees, going to Gme_about_4reat America during my teen years, and living with my mother and sister. I went to Santa Clara High School, and worked various jobs from the time that I was fifteen and a half. I have always worked and some people have labeled me a workaholic. However, the many long hours have paid my way through college and taught me many valuable lessons. I used my money to put gas into me_about_5my first car, a red pickup, and I managed to put forty thousand miles on that truck in three years. I even went across country.

I waited tables and managed a restaurant while I finished school at San Jose State. Of course, I took time for adventures being a leader at summer camps, rock climbing, sailing, camping, and other outdoor activities. I even dropped everything to move to Hawaii in ’96 for the entire year, and loved it. Eventually, “real life” called and I came home to finish my credential and become a teacher.

Finally, I got my BA in English, a Single Subject Credential in that subject, and started teaching. I got a job at the Harker Summer Camp and also found a position as a Fifth Grade English Teacher.


Lanikai Beach, Hawaii

After a few years, I made my way up to Summer Camp Program Director and worked with a great team of teachers during the school year. I learned a great deal. After eight years, I thought I’d try high school at

Pinewood in Los Altos, but quickly decided that opportunities lie in the public school system. Then Lawson Middle School became my home for a few years. I helped to create Lawson Middle School’s Color Clash spirit assemblies, which are still traditions to this day, and I frequently challenged myself with new things like helping to design Lawson’s electronic portfolio system.  In 2010, I finished my Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and in the same year, I married a wonderful woman. I took a position as Assistant Principal at an elementary school for one year and then a middle school the year after that.

My contest-winning "Snape" costume.

My contest-winning “Snape” costume.

There were pros and cons to the administrative position, but in the end, my heart lies in the classroom, working to form strong bonds with students.  After seventeen years, I still get emails from students, some of them now old enough to have families of their own.  Here at Miller, I have helped to build a strong Drama program where we learn how to be brave and kind. Plus, I keep passing along the tricks of Language Arts as we dig into literature and write like professionals.  Feel free to connect with me any time!

1. To Kill a Mockingbird
2. Deathly Hallows
3. Poisonwood Bible
1. U2
2. Counting Crows
3. Coldplay
1. Big Bang Theory
2. The West Wing
3. Modern Family
1. French Fries
2. Pineapple
3. Gelato
4. Coffee
1. How to Train Your Dragon
2. The Matrix Movies
3. When Harry Met Sally
1. Watching Movies
2. Hiking/Camping
3. Rock Climbing
1. Rap of any kind
2. Peas
3. Dumb movies like Twilight
4. Black Licorice
5. Most music older than 1980
6. People who aren’t polite
7. Diary of a Wimpy Kid
8. Meat (I’m a vegetarian)
9. People who don’t care about the environment
10. Most “junkfood”

29 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Daniel Israel
    August 20, 2013 at 12:43 am

    This is the cleanest, most professional site from a teacher I have ever seen. Great job!

    1. August 20, 2013 at 11:49 pm


  2. Sasha
    August 26, 2013 at 11:37 pm

    Mr. Oncay is very funny and a great drama teacher

    1. August 27, 2013 at 2:19 pm

      Thanks Sasha!

  3. Cindy
    August 28, 2013 at 12:56 am

    Nice profile picture Mr. Oncay. :)

    1. August 28, 2013 at 1:49 am


  4. Stephanie
    August 31, 2013 at 12:14 am

    I like the picture of you in your “Snape” contest!
    I really enjoy your drama classes too! :D

    1. September 2, 2013 at 5:24 pm

      Thanks Stephanie!

  5. Yuehho Lin
    October 17, 2013 at 7:10 am

    I can tell you put a lot of effort and heart through this website for students to know you put your time and effort on them in class and out. It would have been wonderful to get to know you even better if you were my language arts teacher this year!
    keep up the great work.

    1. October 20, 2013 at 10:45 pm


  6. Shiv
    January 29, 2014 at 1:13 am

    Hi Mr. Oncay.
    It’s Shiv from 1st quarter. Your website is pretty awesome!

    1. January 29, 2014 at 9:16 pm


  7. Maria
    August 19, 2014 at 12:03 am

    Mr. Oncay is a really funny teacher!

    1. August 21, 2014 at 10:56 pm


  8. Hong
    September 9, 2014 at 3:35 am

    I really enjoyed reading your website. It’s interesting, funny, and loaded with quite amount of good information for parents and students. Thank you for sharing!

    1. September 15, 2014 at 2:25 am

      Thanks! I’ll try to keep it up to date.

  9. Tanav
    October 14, 2014 at 11:56 pm

    Mr. Oncay you are the most funniest and cool drama teacher ever!

    1. October 15, 2014 at 12:32 am


  10. Wesley
    June 9, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    I love it how you prepare us for high school. (I asked my friends if they know what sentence diagramming are, and most of them are like: say what?)

  11. Arjun R
    October 29, 2018 at 11:15 pm

    Dear Mr. Oncay.
    During my time in San Jose for the last year, I loved your drama class at Miller Middle School. It was fantastic, as was the show we put on, a Super Groovy Night’s Dream.

    Thank you for being our teacher and director, Arjun.

    1. October 29, 2018 at 11:50 pm

      Thanks Arjun! I hope you are doing well.

  12. RG
    November 25, 2018 at 12:56 am

    Hey Mr Oncay!

    I was part of your very first Drama 7/8 class at Miller (Fall of 2013) when we put on Twinderella! I still remember your class very fondly and can say with confidence that I grew so much as a young adult from the whole experience. Thanks for inspiring me so long ago and I hope you’re doing well!

  13. Ayanna ('Winifred' in Romeo And Winifred #2)
    January 25, 2019 at 3:33 am

    Mr. Oncay is the best teacher ever! He puts so much time and effort into his students to make sure we have the best experience ever. I have drama year-long and I am so grateful that I do! Drama is and was my favorite class by far. Without taking drama, I would have never became the person I am now. I will never forget this amazing experience. Mr. Oncay helped me get over myself and made me less afraid of presenting to a class. Drama makes me happy to go to school! If you are a sixth-grader reading this, TAKE DRAMA NEXT YEAR! You won’t regret it!

    1. February 11, 2019 at 11:40 pm

      Aww shucks. That’s so nice of you!

  14. Duc
    June 11, 2019 at 3:31 pm

    Hey Mr. Oncay, I wanted to let you know that you were probably the best teacher I’ve had in my 9 years of schooling. I hope you still keep your cheerfulness throughout the next few years because sometimes enthusiasm is the difference between you and other teachers. I really enjoyed your drama class, even if it did take a while to practice and had some rough parts during the rehearsal of Romeo and Winifred. I am not going to Miller Middle School anymore, but you can bet I’m coming to visit.

    1. August 12, 2019 at 11:40 pm

      Thanks Duc! That means so much to me. I look forward to those visits!

  15. Adrienne
    November 28, 2019 at 4:49 am

    Hello Mr Oncay, I was in your home room at Harker back in about 2003. I still remember you teaching us about integrity and being a really amazing teacher. Thank you for your life lessons. Nowadays I’m a dentist doing residency training in Oklahoma. I’ll be back in the bay next year after a decade away for school :) hope you’re having a great holiday season. Happy Thanksgiving! I’m thankful I had you as a teacher.

    1. January 14, 2020 at 11:31 pm

      Hi Adrienne,
      Wow! What a blast from the past. Feel free to email me directly using my school email. So glad to hear from you. Mr. O

  16. Stephen Jin
    May 18, 2020 at 9:58 pm

    Cool profile picture, Mr. Oncay!

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