County BOE announce names of next potential Director of Schools

Published 1:03 pm Wednesday, June 1, 2022

The Carter County School Board revealed the names of qualified candidates to replace outgoing Director of Schools Dr. Tracy McAbee.

McAbee’s last official day with the school system will be June 30.

The list of candidates include the following:
– Brandon Carpenter, Elizabethton, Principal at Hampton Elementary School.
– Justin S. Barden, Dickson, Principal of Charlotte Middle School in Dickson.
– Dr. Lance E. Myhan, Sale Creek, Principal of Bledsoe County Middle School.
– Dr. Monet Samuelson, Avery County, N.C., Principal at Avery County Schools.
– Dr. Greg Rockhold, Hobbs, New Mexico.

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Happy Valley High School principal Doug Mitchell also applied but didn’t meet the qualifications presented by the BOE as he did not have a doctorate degree.

“I am extremely disappointed in receiving no more than five candidates that qualify for the position,”
said Board Chairman Tony Garland.

“I believe it’s the political mess we are in because the director has to deal with it. These local candidates don’t want to apply because of the political games being played.”

Garland asked the BOE to submit four questions to Richard Church, assistant director of schools, so Church could eliminate duplicate questions.

“We want to keep everything above board to keep the element of trust up there,” Garland said. “We want to take the top 10 questions since we have allotted one hour for each candidate.”

The next steps for the board is to develop a shortlist to three candidates at 6:15 p.m. on June 2. The three candidates selected will be notified on June 3.

Public interviews will begin at 5 p.m. on June 6 and a special called meeting will be called before the June 9 board workshop to vote in the new Director of Schools. That meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m.