Top education officials are hoping the effects of a new leadership pipeline geared toward Hamilton County's 75 principals will have a positive effect on the entirety of the county's 3,000 teachers and 42,000 students.
On Tuesday, Superintendent Rick Smith, business leaders, foundation representatives and education supporters gathered at East Ridge Elementary School to announce the creation of the comprehensive leadership pipeline.
Approximately $1 million has already been raised to fund the program's first year, and at least $2 million has been pledged to assist the rolling out of the program for the next five years. Supporters include the Public Education Foundation, the Benwood Foundation, the McKenzie Foundation, McKee Foods, CBL & Associates Properties Inc., Unum, United Way, EMS, Warburg Pincus, Joe Davenport and the Hamilton County Department of Education.
Leaders said the program could have a potential $620 million impact on the economy.
During the brief ceremony, PEF President Dan Challener said the initiative would be "incredibly important."
"A comprehensive leadership pipeline that ensures every public school in Hamilton County is led by an outstanding principal will change Chattanooga," Challener said. "... It will improve the lives of tens of thousands of young people—the very people who will write the future of Hamilton County and Chattanooga."
The program is structured to equip principals with long-term training and mentoring relationships, which will then be leveraged to teachers and in turn trickle down to students. Planners of the initiative spent one year organizing the structure of the pipeline, which is tiered to fit principals in their first, second, third years and beyond.
Leaders encouraged school supporters and members of the community to learn more about the program.
To visit the website for the new leadership pipeline, click here.
Updated @ 2:43 p.m. on 10/1/13 to correct a spelling error.
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