published Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

Hamilton County principals assignments announced

Hamilton County Schools Superintendent Rick Smith announced on Monday reassignments and appointments for several public school principals.

Smith did not announce reassignments for Brainerd High Principal Charles Joynes, Dalewood Middle School Principal Rodney Johnson and Woodmore Elementary School Principal Visa Harper. All three of those principals are being moved to comply with a $500,000 state grant to turnaround schools.

The School Innovation Zone grant, aimed at improving schools that perform in the bottom 5 percent, requires new leadership for schools in that group whose principals have been in place for two years or longer. Last month, the superintendent said the three principals would not be dismissed, but was unclear about what job they may be moved into.

Smith did not return calls seeking comment on Monday.

Promoting or adding new leadership at 13 schools means about 16 percent of Hamilton County's schools will see new leadership next year. Such a shift is fairly normal for the school system.

Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Stacy Stewart said last week that new leadership -- either from existing principals moving between buildings or first-year principals being hired -- is a regular occurrence with principal retirements, resignations and reassignments.

This school year saw new leadership at 15 schools, while the 2010-11 school year saw new principals at 14 buildings, she said.

PRINCIPAL CHANGES

In a statement, Hamilton County Schools Superintendent Rick Smith announced the promotion, hiring and transfer of more than a dozen administrators. In the announcement, he said:

Gail Chuy, current principal at Red Bank High School, will become principal at East Hamilton Middle/High School. Chuy has worked in the school system since 2005 and will replace Principal Pam Dantzler, who is retiring.

Justin Robertson, current principal at Brown Middle School, will become principal at Red Bank High School. Previously a school administrator in Memphis, Robertson has worked in the school system since 2008.

Jane Reynolds, current assistant principal at Brown Middle, will become principal there. She has been in the school system since 1990.

Uras Agee, current principal at Columbia High School in DeKalb County, Ga., will become principal at Brainerd High School. Agee is a former Hamilton County Schools employee (1995-2002), and was also a student-athlete at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

Christian Earl, currently an assistant principal in South Carolina, will become principal at Dalewood Middle School. Earl is a former Hamilton County Schools employee (2001-2008), and was also a UTC student-athlete.

LeAngela Rogers, current assistant principal at Hunter Middle School, will become principal at Hixson Middle School. She has worked in the school system since 2002.

Sandra Barnwell, current principal at Hixson Middle School, will become principal at Snow Hill Elementary next year. She has been with the school system since 1988.

Janice Scott, current principal at Snow Hill Elementary School, will become principal at DuPont Elementary. She has worked in Hamilton County Schools since 1980 and will replace Anita Coleman, who is retiring.

Sharon Dodds, current assistant principal at Smith Elementary, will become principal there. She has worked in the school system since1983 and will replace Billie Jenno, who is retiring.

Debra Anderson, current assistant principal at McConnell Elementary, will become principal there. She has worked in Hamilton County Schools since 2004 and will replace Joy Black, who is retiring.

Randall Bell, current assistant principal at Hixson Elementary School, will become principal at Alpine Crest Elementary School. Bell is replacing Karen Day, who is retiring.

Cheri Grant, current assistant principal at Red Bank Elementary School, will become principal at Woodmore Elementary School.

Penny Leffew, current principal at North Hamilton County Elementary School, will become principal at Wolftever Creek Elementary School. Leffew is replacing Lee Ann Mills, who is retiring.

about Kevin Hardy...

Kevin rejoined the Times Free Press in August 2011 as the Southeast Tennessee K-12 education reporter. He worked as an intern in 2009, covering the communities of Signal Mountain, Red Bank, Collegedale and Lookout Mountain, Tenn. A native Kansan, Kevin graduated with bachelor's degrees in journalism and sociology from the University of Kansas. After graduating, he worked as an education reporter in Hutchinson, Kan., for a year before coming back to Chattanooga. Honors include a ...

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