In the late 1970s and early 1980s, a bright young star named Felice Schachter captured the hearts of American audiences with her role as Nancy Olson on the beloved sitcom “The Facts of Life.” As one of the original cast members, Schachter’s girl-next-door charm and acting prowess promised a long and successful career in Hollywood.
However, as the show evolved, her character made fewer appearances, and by the third season, she had vanished from the Eastland School for Girls. This sudden departure left fans wondering: Whatever happened to Felice Schachter?
Felice Schachter is her given name, and she was born on November 17, 1963 in New York City. Felice’s mother was a theater manager, and her father was an accountant and real estate developer. With her mother’s background in entertainment, it wasn’t long before Felice began her own career–at just four months of age! That was when she appeared on the cover of American Baby magazine.
By the time she was nearly twenty, Felice had done more than 100 TV commercials, including for top brands like Downy and Pampers.
In 1975, Tina appeared on the off-Broadway show The Innocents. She also danced for Shakespearean productions as well as Sleeping Beauty and the Nutcracker.
While she got her start in TV with the mini-series The Adams Chronicles (1976), it would be a few years later when Felice would begin the role that brought her the most recognition, on The Facts of Life.
The Facts of Life
Felice Schachter was one of the original actresses cast on The Facts of Life, playing the impressionable student Nancy in the first season.
However, when the show was retooled after season one, producers decided to reduce the number of main characters. As a result, Schachter’s role as Nancy was severely diminished, leaving her character with little to do.
Ultimately, she was written out of the show entirely during the major cast changes made before season two. The decision to remove her character was likely motivated by producers wanting to streamline the cast and focus more on a central group of four students.
While doing The Facts of Life and studying at Brown, Felice began doing radio at Brown’s WBRU station in Providence, Rhode Island. This led her to also work as a sports broadcaster for CBS Sports (from 1983-1985) and PRIME (1986-1987).
While on The Facts of Life, Felice Schachter also appeared in the 1982 teen comedy Zapped!. She played the role of Bernadette, best friend to the main character Barney who gains telekinetic abilities. As Barney’s smart and dedicated best friend, Bernadette is initially skeptical but eventually gets wrapped up in his telekinetic schemes.
While Felice largely stopped acting after the 1980s, she started working on the other side of the camera in the 1990s. She earned production credits on film and TV projects such as Uncle Sam, Twilight of the Gods, Magic Island, the pilot episode for JAG, The Gnomes’ Great Adventure, and 30 Years to Life.
What Is Felice Schachter Doing Now?
Felice Schachter has found her true calling as a teacher. She went back to school to earn a master’s degree in education and now works as a special education teacher in New York City public schools.
Schachter focuses on working with students who have autism, ADHD, and other learning needs. She uses her past experiences in acting and TV production to creatively engage her students.
Seeing the children she works with make academic and personal growth is extremely rewarding for Schachter. Helping students overcome challenges to reach their potential seems to give her a deep sense of fulfillment.
Schachter says teaching is what she was meant to do, and she has found it a very meaningful way to make a difference in the world.
Reunion with Felice Schachter. It's been way too long! pic.twitter.com/7R9BeCelH3
— juliebrodyb (@juliebrodyb) July 25, 2016
It’s no surprise that Felice ended up in entertainment, given her theater manager mother. Her sister Simone Schachter also earned a couple of acting credits from 1978 to 1980.
Although it is unknown if Felice ever married, she has said that her biggest accomplishment is giving birth to her son William, who was born in October of 2005.
Anyone interested in learning more about Felice can check out her interview with Mike Rand on The Mike Rand Show, which is available for free viewing on YouTube. She discusses everything from The Facts of Life to her later career and her more recent volunteer work.