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Sam Highsmith



Welcome to Myrtle Grove!  I have proudly served as principal at The Grove for the past three years.  I received my BA from UNC-Chapel Hill and my masters from UNC-W.  I taught and coached at Hoggard High School for seven years before becoming an assistant principal at South Brunswick High School.  I returned to New Hanover County where I served as assistant principal at Ashley High School, Eaton Elementary and Myrtle Grove.  I am a native of Wilmington and am married to Pam Highsmith, a teacher at Ashley High School. We have two children, Alex and Lauryn.

Our motto this year will be “Learn to Live and Live to Learn.” This will be for students, teachers, parents and all members of the Myrtle Grove community. I believe that Myrtle Grove is more than a school: we are a community! We will look to bring more members of the community into our school to help provide the various needs of our students and staff. The Big 3: Students, Teachers and Parents. That community must work together to achieve the academic success that we all want. Instruction is and will be our #1 focus all year long! I will always ask the questions “How does it affect instruction” or “How does it improve student learning.” 
Parents, we believe that our partnerships with you are crucial to the overall success of both our students and our school.  Be sure to contact us when you have questions or concerns about your child’s progress.  Feel free to contact me at 350-2100 or email                                                                                          

Assistant Principals

Alan McNaughton
Mr. Mac

Hello from Myrtle Grove. I am looking forward to another great year at the Grove. My name is Alan McNaughton. Most people call me Mr. Mac. I am excited to continue my professional journey here at Myrtle Grove. This is my 2nd year at the Grove. Prior to that, I spent 3 years at Hoggard High School as the 9th grade Assistant Principal. I spent six years prior to that teaching high school English and Special Education at Cape Fear High School in Fayetteville, NC. I graduated from high school in Toronto, Ontario, and received my undergraduate degree from Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA.

I have been happily married for 15 years to my wife, Erin. She teaches at Williston Middle School. We have one biological daughter, and we have fostered and adopted another daughter and son.

I enjoy meeting members of our community and encourage one and all to stop by the school to see the great things going on at Myrtle Grove.

Go Gators!!

Monica Herrick
Mrs. Herrick

Welcome Gators!!!!!  I am so excited to be part of the administrative team. I have worked at Myrtle Grove Middle School since 2008 as an Intensive Behavior/Academic Support Teacher,  a Resource Teacher, and as EC Department Chair.  Each of these of experiences brought great growth as a professional and as an educator. I believe it’s essential for parents and educators to have the common goal of student success. Therefore, I look forward to working with each and every student, parent/guardian and educator in this process.

I received my bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. After several years I decided to advance my career by pursuing a master's degree in executive leadership from Gardner-Webb University.  I’ve been married for four years to my husband, Jason, and we have a beautiful two year old daughter, Nadia.



Myrtle Grove Middle School . 901 Piner Road . Wilmington, NC 28409 . 910-350-2100

In compliance with Federal law, including Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act and the provisions of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, New Hanover County Schools administers all state-operated educational programs, employment activities, and admissions without discrimination because of disability, race, religion, national, or ethnic origin, color, age, military service, or gender except where exemption is appropriate and allowed by law.

To file a complaint of discrimination, contact: Dr. Rick Holliday, Deputy Superintendent, Student Support and Federal Programs, 6410 Carolina Beach Road, Wilmington, NC 28412, Telephone (910) 254-4206; Fax (910) 254-4226.