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Blount Schools Hires Assistant Director, Principals

posted Oct 3, 2016, 6:34 AM by Chris Whitehorne   [ updated Oct 3, 2016, 6:34 AM ]
Blount County Schools is in the midst of a hiring frenzy with less than 10 days until teachers report back to school.

Heritage High School Principal Earl McMahan announced his intention to retire June 29 and worked his last day June 30. Prospect Elementary School Principal Jake Jones was named Thursday to succeed him. "It's an exciting opportunity to reach out to the community and partner with them as we work together to display Mountaineer pride and grow academically," Jones said.


Blount County Director of Schools Rob Britt was working Friday to choose Prospect Elementary's interim principal. Britt hoped to announce his decision Monday.
Carpenters Middle School Principal Mike Crabtree has been named assistant director of curriculum and instruction. He will oversee curriculum and instruction in all pre-K-12 areas, including career and technical education, online learning and education.


"I'm looking forward to the challenges ahead and working with the great people and communities of Blount County," Crabtree said. "It's an important time for public education, and I can't wait to help move our system forward." Jon Young has been Carpenters Middle's interim principal. Young, who most recently served as Carpenters Middle's assistant principal, and an interim assistant principal, who hasn't been named at this date, will serve in their positions until they can be posted in spring 2016.
Blount County holds an administrative day on July 27 and professional development day on July 28. Student registration is July 29, and the first day of school for students is Aug. 3.

"I've been really pleased with the overall level of applicants' expertise, qualifications and talents," Britt said. "They made these decisions hard, but it's a good problem. We have great employees in Blount County Schools, as evidenced by the number of employees who are hired by other districts."

Mike Crabtree, 52, was named July 10 to a position that was repurposed when Dr. John Dalton, pre-K-5 supervisor and technology director, resigned to become Foothills Elementary School's principal. "Mr. Crabtree has served at every level, including the Central Office," Britt said. "He's got a diverse background and knowledge of instructional practices. I've also worked with him in the past, so I know that he's got a great way about him. He's adept at both curriculum decisions and building relationships." Crabtree has worked 27 years in Blount County Schools. He served 1988-97 as academically talented/gifted program coordinator, then served 1997-99 as assistant director of federal projects. Crabtree served 1999-2001 as one of William Blount High School's assistant principals, then served 2001-09 as Carpenters Middle's assistant principal under Britt. He served the past six years as principal. Crabtree holds a bachelor's, master's and educational specialist from Tennessee Technological University. He is certified in special education, as well. Crabtree and his wife, Melissa Harris Crabtree, a Carpenters Middle School related-arts teacher, have two children: Derrick Crabtree and Katie Crabtree Miller.

Britt also praised Jake Jones, a "data-driven leader" who "built an outstanding data response team" at Prospect Elementary. "Mr. Jones has a proven record of excellence. He was highly effective as a teacher, assistant principal and principal. He has all the characteristics, dispositions and essential qualities that we were looking for in the person to lead Heritage High School into the future."  Jones, 40, has worked 17 years in Blount County Schools. He served 1998-2000 as a teacher at Porter Elementary School, which was a K-8 school at that time, where he taught subjects in grades six through eight. Jones served 2000-06 as a math teacher at Heritage Middle School. He served 2006-11 as Porter Elementary School's assistant principal, then served the past four years as Prospect Elementary School's principal.
holds a bachelor's and master's from the University of Tennessee, in addition to an educational specialist degree from Lincoln Memorial University. He and his wife, Christina Jenkins Jones, have two daughters.

Matthew Stewart-The Daily Times