CCSD hires new principal

Published 8:00 am Thursday, June 18, 2020

W.F. Burns once again has a principal.

The Chambers County School board unanimously approved Chad Smith to be the middle school’s principal on Wednesday.

“He comes very highly recommended from the central office level in his current school district,” Chambers County School District Superintendent Dr. Kelli Hodge said. “They wanted to offer him a job but didn’t have a principal’s position to be able to offer him.”

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Smith joins W.F. Burns from South Girard Jr. High School in Phenix City, where he had been the assistant principal since the start of the 2018-19 school year.

This is his first opportunity to be a principal since he began teaching in 2009.

In his time at South Girard, Smith led the school to record-setting scores on the AdvancED’s School Quality Factors during the school’s 2019 accreditation process. The school also rose from a 72 to an 84 on the Alabama State Department of Education’s School report card.

He was awarded the 2018-19 Phenix City Schools Professional Learning Community of the Year award from the Phenix City superintendent.

He established the Rising Star Reading Program, which was an afterschool program that helped students with reading needs.

“One of the things that really stands out is that this person has been afforded some responsibilities as an assistant principal that you really expect from a principal,” Hodge said.

Before working at South Girard, Smith worked as the assistant principal at Phenix City Intermediate School and Booker T Washington Magnet High School.

In his two years at Phenix City Intermediate School, enrollment increased and discipline decreased from the previous year.

While he was at Booker T. Washington, the school was ranked No. 2 of Alabama’s Best High Schools by the U.S. News and World Report Education.

Before becoming an assistant principal, Smith worked at Opelika High School from the start of the 2011-12 school year until the end of the 2013-14 school year. He also taught at  Jefferson Davis High School and Goodwyn Jr. High School, teaching science classes at all three schools.

“He’s impressive,” Chambers County Board President William Martin said.

Smith earned his bachelor’s degree in science in zoology from Auburn University in 2008 and attained his masters of education in 2014 from Auburn University.

Smith will be offered a two-year, 240 days probationary contract and will be the W.F. Burns principal effective July 1.