Mal Matthews TN Education Lottery Educator of the Week

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Educator of the Week - Matthews

By Brittany Patterson
By bpatterson@wbbjtv.com

North Parkway Middle School math accelerate teacher Mal Matthews once intended on a different career.

"When I finished college, I had a degree in Mass Communications," said Matthews. "When I came back home, I started subbing and fell in love with working with young people."

Matthews went back to school and earned his Master's Degree in Education, and now spends everyday trying to be a positive role model.

"On top of just being a classroom teacher, teach them how to be professional, to have manners, to be respectful to their peers and adults they come in contact with at school," said Matthews.

But this educator's day goes beyond the typical school day.

"I'm a classroom teacher, however, we have different programs after school. For example, I do our school's pageant, that's in the fall I also work with a mentoring program that we have here at our school through my fraternity, Omega Psi Phi," said Matthews. "I think it's important that students see we are more than just teachers, that we do have a life outside of school. And I think seeing us to another capacity outside of being a teacher - I think that encourages them."

Matthews said he hopes it encourages them to take away important life lessons.

"Hopefully they will take wisdom, because I talk to them a lot outside of teaching them. And I hope they'll take a sense of the importance of having a good education and taking advantage of having an education in America," said Matthews."We're really working hard for these students to teach them, because we want them all to be successful. So I just hope that people understand we're doing the best we can to teach their children and that we do care about them."