Cheryl McGathey has impeccable timing. The new foods teacher at Taft Union High School moved to Bakersfield in June when her husband, a design engineer, relocated from Ohio. That was when Taft foods teacher Lynn Bramham left the high school to move with her relocating husband.
Mrs. McGathey is the only new teacher hired at Taft High this year. The school did not replace retiring art teacher Bob Peterson or counselor Claude Bradford.
Mrs. McGathey brings 25 years of experience to the job and a strong emphasis on nutrition and consumer education. Besides teaching students how to cook, she will teach them how to shop and introduce them to nutritious, low-calorie foods.
She was born in Ohio and graduated from Highland High School in Granger Township. Her three children also graduated from Highland High. As a student, she worked on the yearbook, and was in the drama club, the Little Sis Club (a spirit and support club for the wrestling team), and the Future Teachers of America. She hopes to one day start a chapter of Family, Career and Community Leaders of America here.
She earned her BS degree in Family and Consumer Sciences at Ohio University and her MA in special education at Ashland University in Ohio.
She has a lifelong teaching credential in Ohio and spent her life teaching there until this year.
She has been married to Paul McGathey for one year in a Brady Bunch empty nest scenario. Her three children and his four children are all grown and living in Ohio or North Carolina.
So far, Taft High reminds her of her high school with a rural, well-behaved student body. “I like it here. Everyone is really friendly,” she said.