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NCSS chooses principal for theme school

COVINGTON - The Newton County School System has announced a principal for the new parent involvement-themed middle school.

In February, the Newton County Board of Education approved the appointment of Dr. Jill Adams, current assistant principal at Indian Creek Middle School, as principal of the theme middle school, which is expected to be housed at the Clements Middle School site at the beginning of the 2009-10 school year.

"We are pleased to have her working with us to share this program in the community," said Dr. Steven Whatley, superintendent of NCSS.

Adams said in a press release that she wants to provide a diverse curriculum that allows students to work on projects in order to be analytical and creative learners and apply what they've learned to future personal and career goals.

"I was very interested in the middle school theme school because I think it provides an opportunity to do something unique that has not been done in Newton County before," said Adams, who was hired by NCSS in July 2006 for her current position. "I thought this would be a good way to motivate and inspire middle school students, and I appreciated the parent involvement component."

Adams, who's been in education since 1999 as a teacher and administrator in Georgia and New Jersey, wants her students to become global learners, so she plans to emphasize current events at the theme school.

"I'd like to see them having discussions on current events locally, nationally and around the world," said Adams, who earned a bachelor's degree in elementary education from the University of South Carolina and a master's in education in K-12 leadership and doctorate in K-12 educational leadership from Capella University in Minneapolis.

In January, the school board approved the appointment of Ruth Anne Smith, current assistant principal at Palmer Stone Elementary, as the principal for the parent involvement themed elementary school, which will be housed at Fairview Elementary School.

It is not clear what will happen to current Clements Middle School Principal Sylvia Jordan and current Fairview Elementary School Principal Takila Curry.

"Administrator assignments for all schools will be announced when the superintendent makes his recommendations for the 2009-10 school year to the board later in the spring," said Sherri Viniard, director of public relations for NCSS, after the board named a principal for the elementary theme school.

As of Feb. 23, enrollment reports provided by NCSS showed that 537 students have applied to the elementary theme school and 208 students have applied to the middle theme school. In December, NCSS officials said they need a minimum of 450 students at the elementary theme school and 624 at the middle theme school to receive full state funding for the schools.

The deadline to apply to the theme schools, which has been extended twice, was Friday, but as of press time Monday, the number of students applying to the schools was not provided by NCSS.

Michelle Floyd can be reached at michelle.floyd@newtoncitizen.com.