Meet the New Teachers at AMHS!


The arrival of the school year means a fresh start—different classes, more homework, creating memories that will last a lifetime. This year, it also means some unfamiliar faces in the staff room. Joining us at AMHS are math teacher, Mrs. Yackey, Spanish teacher, Ms. Calabrese, and English teacher, Ms. Shifflette. Whether you have these teachers or not, read on to get to know them!

Mrs. Catherine Yackey, originally from North Carolina, teaches Geometry and Algebra 2. She is an avid ultimate frisbee enthusiast, and was even on the winning USA team in 2009, which defeated five other countries in Kaohshing City, Chinese Taipei. Mrs. Yackey has graced AMHS with her ultimate frisbee expertise and is passing her skill on to students by founding an ultimate frisbee team. Besides frisbee, she enjoys exercising, socializing, quilting, and “doing math for fun.” She thinks that the most important aspect of learning math is “us[ing] the logical part of the brain every day.” She is very excited to be teaching at Magnet, which is, in her opinion, “the best school on the planet.” Mrs. Yackey has had some harrowing classroom experiences, including a soccer ball stabbing and “a lovely young lady go[ing] into labor during a Geometry test.” We hope that during her time at AMHS she will get to know chess players, future engineers, and history buffs.

New in the Spanish department is Ms. Elizabeth Calabrese, who likes to read, sew, cook, spend time with her family, and spend time outdoors, maybe even all at the same time. Ms. Calabrese raises a good point about the importance of learning Spanish, saying that not only is it vital for us to be able to communicate with other members of our world economy, but that being fluent in Spanish “increases your job opportunities, enriches your life, and opens up a world of travel opportunities.” She also fears birds, which did not go over well when one flew into her classroom. Ms. Calabrese takes pride in her ability to write backwards, but for the sake of her students, hopefully she teaches forwards.

Ms. Shifflette, who teaches freshman English and TOK/Senior Thesis, has been teaching seventeen years. She loves both the academic rigor of AMHS and its emphasis on community service, stating that, “it has been a great experience so far.” When asked what is important about learning English, she claims, “Everything! …It is important to read and to discuss the ideas presented in literature that challenge us to think and to question, and perhaps to change ourselves, and even the world.” Ms. Shifflette once discovered a student stowing “a nice, big gray rat” inside her purse, feeding it potato chips. The girl’s father was called to take the rat home safely. Ms. Shifflette does not eat red meat or poultry, and spends her free time grading the essay section of the SAT. So, next time you take the standardized test, be sure to write her a personalized note for a few extra points!