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September 15, 2013

New approaches at Clarksville Community Schools

Superintendent Kim Knott works on bringing a new school concept to the district with the hopes of increasing enrollment


CLARKSVILLE — You’ve got a lot going on with existing capital projects, new projects and New Tech. How hard is it to juggle all of that?

It is probably the most intense last few months that I’ve experienced since I’ve gone into leadership, We have a lot on our plate, to say the least. You’ve got two legal projects that you can’t miss a timeline with, we’re juggling budget preparation in all of that in trying to see how we’re going to scaffold all these bonds into place so it has minimal or no impact on the taxpayers. Then, we’re trying to choose a staff so they can be a part of the process and market the project at the same time.

We’ve got a very full plate, and that’s just for the new projects. We’ve still got lots of things going on in the buildings. We are very busy, it’s very exciting to see where we are in comparison to where we’ve been.

I would much rather have it like this than going back to the days where we had no dollars and having to look at other options for our district.  It’s very rewarding. There are days where I leave saying, “Wow, if you would have told me we would be doing all of this five years ago, I would have said there would have been no way.’

Where do you want to see your district by June?

By the end of this school year, we’re on the process of goal setting. I want to see our staff, teachers, principals, maintenance departments, transportation, technology, all using data from their areas to support improving student achievement in this district.

We’ve been using measurable goals and data very well in our buildings. We need to make it more meaningful and useful for our teachers. We’re expanding that concept to athletics, maintenance, food service, so the supporting departments will do a similar process that our buildings have been doing for three years.

We always need the practice of getting better at using data to make decisions, whether that’s how we improve our facilities, cleanliness, food selection, to make a better learning environment for our kids. That way, they can have the best facilities for their education. We’ve got a long way to go to make that meaningful and relevant. But using that classroom data will be a huge accomplishment for us. We’ve really in five years just transformed our school district.

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