Our everyday work is rooted in our mission to help transform public education so that all students graduate prepared for college, leadership and life. In preparation of the new school year, our educators and leaders in Tennessee have worked with health experts, studied virtual education models, gathered feedback from stakeholders, and collaborated with peers across the country to refine our distance learning practices to ensure student success. As school begins with distance learning, our school leaders share their thoughts, feelings, and excitement.

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"I am often amazed that I get to do the challenging, yet rewarding work of educating our students for current and future greatness. Much has changed in our lives since we were last together, reshaping and remolding our thinking about equity and social justice. My hope is that we can hold on to this moment and continue to grow academically, socially and emotionally, creating opportunities to enrich the lives of our students. As the principal of Kirby Middle School, I will work with the teachers, staff, families and communities to make sure we are safe, transparent and connected"

— Marian Williams, Kirby Middle School principal

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"Welcome to Greatness! It is with great pleasure that I say welcome back to school! I hope that you all have been able to stay safe and healthy over the Summer Break.

Our team will work together to make this the best school year yet, despite not being in the physical building, by ensuring students are focused on learning and celebrating success along the way. When our students succeed, we all succeed. I hope to see families embrace Distance Learning, while taking in all that Wooddale Middle has to offer."

— Marysa Utley, Wooddale Middle School principal

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"I am beyond excited to begin this school year as the Principal of Bluff City High School. We are on a journey that is new to everyone, with no instructions for how to get us where we ultimately want to be. However, there are no better teachers, students or staff than at Bluff, so as we face each challenge, we will remember to call on each other for help and reassurance, because when you call on one Gray Wolf, you get the whole pack! We will do this together and thrive through every turn."

— Lameika Pegues, Bluff City High School principal

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"I am excited to learn new ways to educate my students. This year may be trying and somewhat scary for some, but I am going into the year with a positive attitude and going to do whatever it takes to get it right!!!!"

— Christina Austin, Fairley High School principal

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"My biggest hope for this year is that students/parents will remain open minded while engaging in this endeavor (Distance Learning) that is new for us all. Hopefully when all is said and done, students will have a new appreciation for this evolution in education that will likely aid them in their quest to conquer the next level of education (college)."

— Teddrick Estes, Hillcrest High School principal

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