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5 questions with Justin Mann


Editor’s note: Answering  The Purcell Register’s five questions this week is Justin Mann, Washington Middle School principal.

Q: Do you miss the classroom?

A: I do. When you are teaching daily, you have amazing moments to connect with your students in a much more authentic sense.

You are there with and for your students throughout all the emotions and learning that takes place in the classroom. So yes, I definitely miss that aspect of the classroom.

Q: Is being a principal what you expected?

A: Being a principal is definitely a little of what I expected but so much more. I had NO idea how far of a reach you really have in the role; how many MORE students and teachers you get to interact with and see grow, learn and succeed.

You are able to view the daily functions of school and the district through a much wider lens, which brings about a much clearer view of the significance of your responsibility.

Q: What led you to choose this grade level to work with?

A: I am a big kid at heart. I can vividly remember my middle school years and how awkward it is being an adolescent. I can see myself in many of our students and relate to them and their characteristics. I also LOVE being able to help them through this time, speaking encouragement to them daily and bringing a smile or laugh to wherever they are in the process of learning.

I always tell them middle school years are hard enough as it is, so let’s make their experience here at WMS one of the most positive support systems to help them through it all.

Q: If you weren’t an educator, what would you be doing?

A: I love helping others, so any job that allows you to provide assistance to another is reward enough to me.

For a hobby, probably a lounge singer or a DJ, no lie, or “no cap” as the kids say.  I absolutely LOVE music. I usually have it on wherever I am.

Q: What is the most satisfying part of your job?

A: Seeing others have fun, taking part, participating in school and all of the opportunities it brings. I love seeing the transformation that can bring about.

Middle School is a tough time, and most kids are learning who they are or what they want to be, while forming relationships with others.

All of this is happening while they are going through major changes both physically and mentally, so seeing them develop lifelong skills and watching the light bulbs turn on and witnessing them join in on the fun is probably the best part of all.


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