The Addition of a Sutton Favorite: Mrs. Dawnitra Quigley Transfers to NAHS


Maddox Wade

Familiar Beginnings: Dawnitra Quigley settles into her new classroom, full of color and fun, after making the transition from Sutton Middle School to North Atlanta High School.

The transition from middle school to high school is defined by nerves and change. The task of entering the eleven stories- full of new peers, teachers, and staff- is a daunting one. Familiar faces are the highlight of unfamiliar hallways that get new students through the turbulence of their first few weeks on campus. But hang in there Dubs, because North Atlanta’s floors just got a little brighter, thanks to the newfound presence of beloved Algebra 1 teacher Dawnitra Quigley. 

Quigley began her teaching journey – after a five-year engineering career –, at Lithonia High in Decab County, followed by a short stint at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School. She then took a brief hiatus from teaching during a three-year break to prioritize her family. Having always dreamt of becoming a high school teacher, NAHS was the first place Quigley looked when pressing play on her teaching career. With no openings available, she took a position as an algebra teacher at Sutton Middle School, where she worked for six years before joining the Warrior family. “As one of Ms. Quigley’s past middle school students, it’s been so nice to see her around,” said Senior Liza Fagin, “it brings a sense of nostalgia back to the hallways of North Atlanta.”

Taking on her first year at NAHS, Quigley may be new to the staff, but she certainly isn’t new to the Dub Community. During her three-year teaching hiatus, she could be frequently found roaming the North Atlanta halls. Her oldest daughter was an exceptional Warrior, earning her the recognition of many teachers. The rest of her reputation around the school was gained from her role as PTA co-president. As a result of her school-wide fame, there was rarely a time she could walk through the glass front doors without being asked to guide a parent around the school, escort a student to an administrator, or address pressing questions. “I had already experienced the culture and knew most of the staff,” said Quigley, “I knew exactly what I was getting into and that I wanted to take on a permanent role here.”

Although the middle to high school transition is often viewed as one of stark contrast, Quigley sees little change in her students or her teaching curriculum. What Dubs may not know is that Sutton and North teachers work in collaboration with one another to create a cohesive curriculum so students -despite the grade or school in which they take it- receive near-equivalent instruction. Ginyaah Rachel is one of the few lucky freshmen to learn with Quigley for both the eighth and ninth grades. “It has been amazing to go into the school year already knowing how the classroom works,” said Rachel, “Ms. Quigley takes time to understand how all her students learn and accommodates them accordingly.”

It’s a rare sight to spot Quigley in the hallways unaccompanied by Dubs, new and old, who are excited to see a familiar face. From the first floor to the eleventh, there isn’t a student that doesn’t delight in the opportunity to catch up with their middle school teacher and recount the good old days. “I am truly honored that so many students remember me and that I was able to have a lasting impact on their lives,” said Quigley.