My name is Mrs. Matthews and I am so excited to serve as principal of one of the very best schools in Duval County, Pine Forest School of the Arts! I absolutely love everything about Pine Forest and I am sure you will, too! It’s hard not to smile when you enter the building; the walls are always filled with student artwork and if you walk down the halls, you’ll hear the excitement of students learning in the classrooms.
As a child, I attended Duval County Public Schools and have been employed by the school district for sixteen years. During those years, I worked as a classroom teacher, a school-based Reading Coach, a district-level English Language Arts Specialist, and also an Assistant Principal. I am eager to begin my third year as Principal of our amazing school! One of my very favorite memories of my time spent in the wonderful profession of education was having the opportunity to work alongside some of my former teachers when I taught first grade!
Another special thing about me is that I love the arts…ALL of them! My parents enrolled me in dance classes at the age of 6 and dance studios have been a like a second home to me ever since. As I have grown older, I really enjoy Musical Theatre because it incorporates dancing, singing, and acting. Although I have not yet learned to play an instrument, I enjoy spending times in our Strings classroom and listening to our talented Strings students play! I have two daughters whom both share my love of dance. One is thirteen and is entering her 8th grade year. She also loves Visual Arts and Computer Animation. The other daughter just turned 8 and is entering 3rd grade this school year. She enjoys dancing and just being on the stage! When I’m not at school or at the dance studio with my daughters, I enjoy spending the weekends with my family at our home or traveling to new places. In addition to my two daughters, I also live with my husband, and our two pets: Chase the Dog and Milo the Cat.
This school year, our school-wide theme is: There's No Place Like Pine Forest!
Even in the midst of all of the uncertainty with the Covid-19 pandemic, we are excited to begin this school year with you...whether from the school building or from the comfort of your own home. We will follow the yellow brick road together to the wonderful land of Oz as we strive to be proficient readers, writers, mathematicians and scientists! We will show courage like the lion in the story as we explore the visual and performing arts areas and share our creative and artistic talents with the entire Pine Forest community!
Should you ever have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me via email or telephone; my contact information is provided below. I also encourage you to LIKE our school's Official Facebook Page (@pineforestschoolofthearts); this page will not only keep you informed, but also allow you to view a "glimpse" of the learning that takes place within the walls of our building each day.
I am looking forward to a wonderful, fun-filled, year full of learning and excitement at Pine Forest School of the Arts...where the Arts and Academics truly do meet Center Stage.
Michelle Matthews, Principal
Phone: (904) 346-5600 X 104