Meet Mrs. Flagg

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Mrs. Flagg holds her youngest grandchild, Cyrus, after returning to the Pacific Northwest from Washington D.C.

Parker Briggs, Online Editor

Susan Flagg is the newest member of the Upper School for Boys math faculty, having joined at the start of the 2020-2021 academic year. Inkwell interviewed Mrs. Flagg to introduce her to the rest of the Annie Wright community.

 

Inkwell: We’d like to get to know you— tell us about yourself. 

Flagg: Well, I’m originally from Virginia, but grew up all over. When I was in middle school, my family moved to Japan, and I graduated high school in Korea. I actually have a degree in biology, with a minor in chemistry. I thought I would go into some kind of laboratory work when I was in college, but then I married and had children. My husband was in the military, so we moved around a lot. I needed a job that was not really tied to one place, so I got a degree in education from the University of Hawaii, and have been teaching now for 26 years. While I started out teaching science, I switched over to teaching math. That was the job that I was offered, and I absolutely fell in love with it; I’ve been teaching math ever since. 

After getting my degree in Hawaii, I taught for a little while in Florida, then in Germany, and here in Tacoma. My husband was at Fort Lewis— what it was called at the time— and I taught for 13 years at Bellarmine Preparatory School. Our journey took us to Washington D.C. where I worked at the National Cathedral School for Girls. That was my first experience with single-sex education, and I really fell in love with it. When I came back to Tacoma, Annie Wright just felt like a good fit. I hadn’t even realized until I started looking that AWS had opened up a new division for boys. That was a very welcome surprise.

 

Inkwell: Where all have you lived?

Flagg: Well, I lived with my husband in Germany for 6 or 7 years during separate tours, we lived in Hawaii, then came out here to Washington State. We’ve also lived in California, Florida, and Virginia. I like visiting places, but when you live somewhere, it makes such a difference. You meet people that you never would have met before, and get to know them over a span of time. There isn’t any place we’ve lived that I haven’t really haven’t enjoyed. Some of them are more exotic than others, but it’s always fun to switch it up and see someplace new.

 

Inkwell: What made you choose Annie Wright?

Flagg: Living in Washington State, we really fell in love with the Pacific Northwest, and one of our kids is out here in Gig Harbour, who had a brand new baby in March. Especially after living in D.C., this part of the country feels very relaxing. It’s just not so wound up.

 

Inkwell: What is something your students don’t know about you?

Flagg: Oh gosh… they may not know I’m a big Game of Thrones fan. They probably don’t suspect that! Every so often I think, “you know, I bet they don’t know I watch Dexter!”

They probably do know that I have a couple of grandchildren, because I talk about them pretty incessantly!

My high school sport in Japan was scuba diving. We went in the ocean, and it was so cold that you needed a wet suit no matter what the season was. I haven’t done it in years, but that was one of my little adventures.

 

Inkwell: What are you looking forward to about this year?

Flagg: I just want to see my students in the classroom, and also want to meet my colleagues. Even 10 weeks into the school year, working online there are all kinds of people at the school I still haven’t had the chance to meet. I’m excited to meet them all when we come back on campus. 

What’s fun for me is getting to see that the USB is really such a new entity. I meet people and think that they must have been here for a long time, when really they’ve only been here for one year. The USB is still very flexible; other schools I’ve worked at don’t have the same kind of flexibility. They’re more set in the feeling that “this is how we do it because this is how we’ve done it.” If there’s going to be a change, it has to be a long time in the coming, whereas at the USB, there are things here that we just have to figure out on the fly. It’s just such a new… such a new endeavor. And I love it.