New Faculty Spotlight: Garrett McVaugh, Half-Day Preschool Teacher

Garrett McVaugh joins the Moorestown Friends community as the Half-Day Preschool Teacher. Partnered with his teaching assistant, Pauline Williams, together they will be guiding some of the youngest MFS students through their first year of school.

He has been an early childhood educator for 13 years, working with children ages 2 through 6, and it was “the dynamism of intellectual engagement every day” that attracted Garrett to education and that “has never ceased to make teaching a joy.”

Most recently, he was a teacher at Preschool of the Arts in Madison, WI. Prior to living in Wisconsin, Garrett spent eight years teaching at St. John’s Episcopal Preschool in Washington, DC where he also served as the Director of Summer Programs. All members of his family are or have been teachers, from preschool to the college level. Through his family, Garrett traces his roots to the local area. His dad was raised in Riverton and his mother is from Philadelphia. He grew up though with his parents and brother in Hamilton, NY.

Garrett is a member of the Corporation of Haverford College, where he is an alum. In college, he played varsity cricket. He also is active with golf and ice hockey.

As a Quaker, Garrett is looking forward to reconnecting with Quaker education at MFS, which has always been important to him.

“I believe that the explicit mandate of educating both academic achievers, as well as social and moral leaders, is imperative for our world today, and I value the emphasis that MFS puts on these Twin Pillars (academic rigor/spiritual and ethical education),” said Garrett. “There is also a palpable sense of community here.”

Garrett most enjoys engaging with the children and their ideas each day, witnessing their complex thinking as they make sense of the world around them.

“I believe that children are complex and capable, and that great revelation come from listening to their ideas,” said Garrett. “I believe in the rights of children, who are active and important protagonists in their own education. I believe in a partnership with children and parents that allows us not only to be close to their thinking, but also allows us to make the learning of children visible to a broader community. I have been fortunate to have many colleagues over the years who have partnered with me in the philosophy of the schools of Reggio Emilia, like MFS, and have promoted the rights of children.”

Garrett currently lives in Cinnaminson with his girlfriend, Bianca.