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Assistant principals engage with Gov. Bill Haslam and Education Commissioner Candice McQueen as part of the Governor's Academy for School Leadership.

Assistant principals engage with Gov. Bill Haslam and Education Commissioner Candice McQueen as part of the Governor’s Academy for School Leadership.

Here are 26 assistant principals being groomed to lead Tennessee schools

Twenty-six assistant principals will participate in a one-year fellowship program as part of Tennessee’s drive to cultivate school leaders for the future.

Gov. Bill Haslam on Friday announced educators chosen for his 2018 Governor’s Academy for School Leadership, as well as the 26 principals who will mentor them.

The initiative is in response to the growing body of research showing the significance of principals in developing effective teachers — and therefore improving student outcomes.

“You can walk into a school and tell right away if there is a great principal who is leading effectively,” Haslam said in his announcement. “Great principals attract and keep great teachers, and great teachers lead to student success.”

This will be the third class of the Governor’s Academy, which launched in 2016 as a partnership of the state, local school districts, and Vanderbilt’s Peabody College of education and human development.

Fellows were nominated by their superintendents and selected by the partnership through an application and interview process.

Each fellow is paired with an experienced principal mentor, must attend monthly group training sessions and a week-long summer institute at Vanderbilt, and intern three days a month at his or her mentor’s school. Upon completion, they are expected to pursue placement as a school principal in their districts or regions. (At least 18 have been promoted so far.)

Chosen for the 2018 academy are:

Merissa BaldwinAspire Hanley Elementary SchoolAchievement School District
Jeni IrwinAnderson County High SchoolAnderson County
Heather ByrdEagleton Elementary SchoolBlount County
Melissa BrockH Y Livesay Middle SchoolClaiborne County
Milton NettlesCumberland Elementary SchoolDavidson County
Noelle TaylorWest End Middle SchoolDavidson County
Andrea BeaubienDickson Elementary SchoolDickson County
Josh RogersDyersburg Intermediate SchoolDyersburg
Noelle SmithGreeneville High SchoolGreeneville
Travis MillerOrchard Knob Middle SchoolHamilton County
Heather HarrisMiddleton Middle-High SchoolHardeman County
Jacob BellissimoJefferson Middle SchoolJefferson County
Beth CohenDobyns-Bennett High SchoolKingsport
Jamey RomegHalls Elementary SchoolKnox County
Sharonda RoseLakeland Elementary SchoolLakeland
Vanessa SpoonRipley Middle SchoolLauderdale County
Rachel WassermanLoudon Elementary SchoolLoudon County
Amanda BrabhamThelma Barker Elementary SchoolMadison County
Chris WinninghamAlgood Middle SchoolPutnam County
Larry StaggsSpringfield High SchoolRobertson County
Chris GeorgeChristiana Middle SchoolRutherford County
Clint DowdaBluff City Elementary SchoolSullivan County
Stephen WalkerRucker Stewart Middle SchoolSumner County
Latoya AveryDrummonds Elementary SchoolTipton County
Jordan HughesBoones Creek Elementary SchoolWashington County
Joshua JohnstonMt. Juliet High SchoolWilson County

Here are this year’s principal mentors:

Monique CincoreAspire East AcademyAchievement School District
Andrea RussellCentral officeAnderson County
April HerronMiddlesettlements Elementary SchoolBlount County
Suzanne AndersTazewell-New Tazewell Primary SchoolClaiborne County
Renita PerkinsStratton Elementary SchoolDavidson County
Kevin ArmstrongDupont-Hadley Middle SchoolDavidson County
Malissa JohnsonCharlotte Elementary SchoolDickson County
Cal JohnsonDyersburg Middle SchoolDyersburg
Pat DonaldsonCentral officeGreeneville
Chrissy EasterlyOoltewah Middle SchoolHamilton County
Chris CranfordToone Elementary SchoolHardeman County
Scott WalkerJefferson County High SchoolJefferson County
Holly FloraJohn Sevier Middle SchoolKingsport
Keith CotrellCedar Bluff Elementary SchoolKnox County
Kasandra BerryBon Lin Elementary SchoolLakeland
Susan FarrisCentral officeLauderdale County
Christie AmburnFort Loudoun Middle SchoolLoudon County
Melinda HarrisCommunity Montessori SchoolMadison County
Trey UpchurchPrescott South Middle SchoolPutnam County
Katie OsborneGreenbrier High SchoolRobertson County
Kim StoeckerSiegel Middle SchoolRutherford County
Robin McClellanCentral officeSullivan County
Brian SmithStation Camp Middle SchoolSumner County
Brooke ShipleyBrighton Elementary SchoolTipton County
Kelley HarrellRidgeview Elementary SchoolWashington County
Travis MayfieldWilson Central High SchoolWilson County