Jenkins wants ‘family atmosphere’ to endure at Hampton Elementary
Published 11:46 am Wednesday, August 10, 2022
By Angela Cutrer
As Jake Jenkins enters Hampton Elementary as its new principal, he’s not interested in making a lot of changes.
In fact, he doesn’t believe attempting to reinvent the wheel is a smart move when everything is already running perfectly well.
“I’ve always seen Carter County as a family,” he said. “Hampton Elementary has a family atmosphere. All I want us to do is to continue to provide a good education and to continue to provide the school and the community with that family atmosphere as well.”
That means he welcomes community members, parents and students to visit when they feel the need or just want to know more.
Jenkins has education in his blood. Both of his parents were teachers: his mother for more than 30 years and his father nearly the same.
His wife, Tiffany, serves as director of special education for Carter County. Together they have two daughters: Riley, 3-1/2, and Chloe, four months.
Jenkins has 14 years of teaching under his belt. He was assistant principal last year before he moved into the principal’s position.
He attended Valley Forge Elementary, before moving on to graduate at Elizabethton High. He earned his degree in math at East Tennessee State University and his specialist’s and doctorate at the University of the Cumberlands in Kentucky.
He started teaching math at Hampton High School, then moved to Hampton Elementary to teach seventh- and eighth-grade math.
“Brandon Carpenter did an excellent job as principal here,” Jenkins said. “He did a really great job. I’ve always felt that way about this school and I don’t want to do anything to change it.
“With education, of course there are always going to be changes, but as long as we can keep that family atmosphere, we will be just fine.
“It’s just such a special place, Carter County is.”