This summer, the Pride introduced a veteran teacher to their staff, whose passion for teaching stems from nearly thirty-four years on the job. Mrs. Deborah McNally may be new to Leesville Road High School, but brings valuable experience to the math department. Now, McNally plans to settle at Leesville and continue guiding her students toward a better future.
The transition to Leesville was easy for McNally, as she is incredibly impressed by how organized and supportive the administration is. She is also pleasantly surprised by the maturity, friendliness, and positivity of the student body. “I was shocked at how many students reached their hand out to meet me,” McNally said, appreciating the welcoming gesture many students offered.
Mrs. McNally earned her Bachelor of Science from UNC Charlotte, taught for three years in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg area, and for thirty years at Sanderson High School. She now yearns to complete her Master’s degree from NC State University to add to her accomplishments.
McNally comes from a family of teachers, as her mother was an English professor and her grandmother an elementary school teacher. Additionally, McNally raised a family of her own teachers, with two children teaching at the elementary school level and a son studying vocal music education at UNCG. “Teaching is in our blood; we joke that it’s in our genes,” McNally said with a laugh.
Even with three decades of teaching under her belt, McNally plans to teach for a very long time. “My mother taught until she was seventy-five…teaching keeps you young,” she said. McNally expressed her love of teaching in plain terms: “I love teaching. I love teenagers. I love high schoolers.”
Now at Leesville, a long teaching career brings experience as well as high standards. “My expectations for my students is for my students to be successful, [and] the definition of successful isn’t just passing,” said McNally. McNally wants her students to have opportunities for mathematical discourse and dialogue, as well as the ability to articulate mathematically.
However, McNally stated that for years teachers have taught to the test, but she gave an insight on her teaching philosophies to counter this method, “…I think if you really give students a chance to conceptually understand, investigate, work collaboratively, and give them technology projects, then you don’t have to worry about teaching to the test,” McNally said.
Her teaching methods are noticeably effective with her students. “I like her teaching style; it helps me learn to my fullest potential,” said Griffin Sullivan, sophomore.
The Leesville community is excited to welcome Mrs. McNally, who loves to challenge her students and encourages them to think critically. Her positive character and guiding hand will allow her to thrive as a teacher with the Pride.