CCSD School Board Photo.jpg

Back row, from left are Clark Menard, John Harmon, Mike Chapman, Robert Rechsteiner and Superintendent Brian Hightower. Front row, from left: Kelly Poole, Kyla Cromer and Patsy Jordan.

The Cherokee County School District was recently named a finalist for the 2021 Governance Team of the Year Award by the Georgia School Boards Association.

Three awards are presented annually to recognize top school boards and superintendents for outstanding leadership and dedication to continuous improvement. One winner is selected in three categories based on school district enrollment.

The winners will be announced at the Georgia School Boards Association conference in December. CCSD is one of five finalists for the large system award.

“This award has set the bar for what high functioning school boards and superintendents should look like,” said Bryan Preston, GSBA president and vice chair of the Coffee County Board of Education. “Each year these governance teams showcase best practices and set an example for others to strive towards. We appreciate the hard work each of these finalists have showcased.”

Finalists were selected through a process that included documentation of progress, success, and review by an impartial team of educational experts.

The three overall winners will be chosen by a panel of national experts who serve in various leadership roles in public education.

School Board Chair Kyla Cromer said she’s proud of the work by her fellow school board members, Superintendent of Schools Brian Hightower, all of CCSD’s employees, and the entire community to serve students.

“Successful governance cannot happen without the support of our entire community,” Cromer said. “On behalf of my fellow school board members, we’re so grateful to have the opportunity not only to lead, but also to collaborate with stakeholders and, today, to celebrate this shared achievement.”

The Governance Team of the Year finalist honor follows three consecutive years of recognition for the school board from GSBA.

Most recently, the Cherokee County school board earned the Exemplary School Board designation, the highest designation awarded, in 2020.

“Our school board is more dedicated to its role of serving our community’s children than ever before,” Hightower said. “The past two years have presented unprecedented challenges that many volunteers would not have endured, yet our school board members have continued to serve and serve our community well.”

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