Meet Ms. Margaret Mattingly, a new teacher of the Manual faculty


Ms. Mattingly researches during her planning period

Julia Nguyen

Ms. Mattingly joined the Manual faculty this year to be an English teacher. She teaches Freshman English over in the YPAS Annex, but she has been teaching for seventeen years at other schools including Thomas Jefferson Middle School, Assumption High School, Sacred Heart Academy, and Fern Creek High School.

Previously, she taught at Thomas Jefferson Middle School where she was head of the journalism program along with some family members like her sister-in-law. “The journalism program there was canceled and the administration wanted more digital publications,” she said. She was in charge of the newspaper and yearbook there. “Even though we had a website, we didn’t have a large newspaper or yearbook, just the Broadcasting and Digital Media stayed,” she said.

Since moving to Manual, Ms. Mattingly had to shift her teaching agenda around. “I’ve got to get acclimated and change my wheels in a new direction,” she said. It’s been fourteen years since she’s taught Freshman English. “I need to relearn the curriculum since there’s a big grammar push here and the whole plagiarism issue.”

When she first came to Manual, she was surprised about the lack of technology compared to Thomas Jefferson Middle School. “I come from a school of smart boards, three full computer labs, five laptop carts , and two iPad carts. I wasn’t even sure I was going to have a projector,” she said.

She is also adjusting to life in the YPAS Annex. “A lot of things happen in the main building that we don’t know about until later. We don’t do morning announcements and the pledge, but I do like being out of the way. It’s not as congested as it is in the main building,” she said. Ms. Mattingly also enjoys the musical qualities of the YPAS Annex. “It’s cool to teach a class and know there’s dancers down the hall and hear the singers. It reminds me of an 80s TV show called ‘Fame,’ which is about a performing arts school just like YPAS.”

Since she was young, Ms. Mattingly had always wanted to become a teacher. “I used to make my little brother and sister play school and I had some good English teachers growing up. I think the one reason why I’m still a teacher is that I feel like I was able to make a difference as a teacher and I still feel like I’m doing that,” she said.