Students showing up for the first day of school this morning in Knox County will be greeted by new teachers, new school security officers and for some, new schools.
In East Knox County, students attending Carter Elementary will step into a brand-new $13.9 million facility. The school replaces one built in the 1930’s and was financed by the sale of county land. On the west side of the county, the district will open Northshore Elementary to students for the first time this morning. The $15.5 million facility was constructed in the new Northshore Town Center, a multi-use residential and retail center at the corner of Northshore Drive and the Pellissippi Parkway.
Students entering Vine Middle Magnet Performing Arts and Sciences Academy and Sarah Moore Greene Magnet Technology Academy may recognize the buildings, but a lot of the teachers and administrators will be unfamiliar. Staff members at both schools were asked to re-apply for their jobs after years of performing below expectations. Only six employees were rehired at Vine and more than half of the staff at Sarah Moore Greene is new.
On August 2, Knox County hosted a graduation ceremony for 47 new security officers, part of an effort to place an armed officer in every elementary, middle and high school in the system. The hiring and training of the officers was part of the district’s response to last December’s massacre of 20 children and six staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.
Knox County students report Monday morning for a half-day of school. Full days begin Tuesday.