The TOSS Superintendent Spotlight for March 2017 is Steve Starnes. He has been serving as Director of Hawkins County Schools for nearly three years.
Mr. Starnes was excited to discuss the titles and awards given to his district in recent years, including the following:
- TDOE Exemplary District for 2014-2015
- 2016 TSBA School Board of the Year
- LEAP 1.0 and LEAP 2.0 Grant Recipient
The LEAP Grants have allowed Hawkins County to offer a Work Ethic Diploma and National Career Readiness Certificate for their high school students.
When we asked what the best part of his job is, Mr. Starnes said that he enjoys working with the various stakeholders in his district to improve the outcomes of the school system. He has also enjoyed seeing a great deal of progress made in his district, affording more opportunities for their students to become college and career ready by graduation.
One of Mr. Starnes' favorite memory from his superintendency so far is from a visit he made to an elementary school on Superintendent Appreciation Day. When the principal of the school asked some of the kindergarten students if they knew who Mr. Starnes was, several answered "the president." Not only did this provide a big laugh for the group, but it also gave Mr. Starnes the opportunity to explain to his students what the superintendent does for their school.