Briar Woods Alumni Becomes School Board Member


Grace Luebke, Reporter

Andrew Hoyler, a Briar Woods Alumni, has brought his passion for bettering the education of students to the Loudoun County School Board. He shared his enthusiasm last week during an interview here at Briar, where he regularly volunteers his time as a substitute teacher. Hoyler shed light on the school board’s overall vision and their goal of catering to the needs of all students. 

The oldest of five, Hoyler grew up locally in Ashburn, graduating from Briar Woods in 2014. Subsequently, he attended Purdue University, where he studied professional flight. Afterwards, he became a commercial airline pilot and decided to move back to his hometown, where he was voted onto the school board in 2021. 

Despite Hoyler’s optimistic outlook on all things LCPS, his middle school experience in Loudoun wasn’t always pleasant. He was bullied constantly both mentally and physically, and no teacher seemed to take notice. Not only did he fall into a deep pit of depression, but he also grappled with suicidal thoughts. “I wrote my goodbye letter, and I was going to burn my house down while my family wasn’t home,” Hoyler expressed. In overcoming these tough times, Hoyler developed a sense of compassion for those who shared similar experiences. It was these triumphs that helped fuel his school board campaign.

As a student of Briar Woods, I always wondered what the purpose of the school board was. Andrew Hoyler explained how the board takes care of budgets, upkeep on schools, and lending an ear to those who voice their concerns throughout the county. On the basis of budget, Loudoun County Public Schools receives around two billion dollars each year in order to better our education systems and facilities.

Since early September, the Loudoun County school board has faced media scrutiny, much of it on the national stage. Most of it has to do with angry parents and teachers voicing their concerns around the teachings of CRT or Critical Race Theory. Andrew Hoyler and his fellow board members have said that Critical Race Theory is not embedded within the county’s school curriculum, but that hasn’t stopped the media and parents from speaking out at school board meetings. “Each person gets two minutes to speak, and we even have parents having their children speak to gain more time,” said Hoyler. The county’s passionate school board meetings became the punchline of a Saturday Night Live skit, which pokes fun at our county and the parents that attend each meeting, some with unique wants and needs. Hoyler has seen the skit and finds it comical; however, there is hurt that lies within the joke. “Each board member had police force protecting them for a while,” said Hoyler. Between angry parents and media contamination, Loudoun County’s school board has truly been a hot topic and each board member’s safety has become a main priority.

Andrew Hoyler’s story is an inspiration to all students. He encourages everyone to speak up about their concerns, saying “[he] wants to hear from students the most because everything [the board does] affects them.” The school board has many exciting plans for the upcoming school year. If you’d like to read about what’s next for Loudoun County, check out Rylyn Christopher’s article And finally, thank you to Andrew Hoyler for taking the time to educate others about our school board.