By TONY STINNETT/ Courier Sports Editor
Students at Cannon County High School will have a new principal when the 2013-14 academic year starts in August.
Cannon County High School Principal Tim Knox has resigned his position, effective July 20, to accept an administrative position at Coffee County High School in Manchester.
"I've enjoyed my 16 years at Cannon County High School," Knox said. "I am grateful for the opportunity to work in this system. It has been a great opportunity, and I have been able to do a lot of different things. We love this area and the people here so my family and I are going nowhere. My family and I want to remain a part of this community."
The resignation will leave officials scurrying for a replacement as the first day of school for the faculty and staff is Aug. 1. Students will attend for an abbreviated day Aug. 2, and the first full day of school is Aug. 6.
The position for a new principal at CCHS is posted on the Cannon County Board of Education web site. The deadline to file an application is July 25 or until the position is filled.
"We will interview interested applicants and try to have a new principal in place by July 26," said Barbara Parker, Cannon County Director of Schools. "Mr. Knox was a loyal employee and he will be missed. I wish him well in his new position at Coffee County High School."
Knox served in many different capacities through his 16 years service at Cannon County High School. He started as a geography and history teacher in 1997 and worked his way up to assistant principal and athletic director before being named principal in 2009. He also served as head baseball and boys basketball coach during his tenure.
Knox said he is proud of many gains made during his time as principal at CCHS; however, the veteran administrator says he does not leave satisfied.
"I don't think any school can say they are happy where they are," Knox said. "You never settle; you never get comfortable. We have had challenges we have had to work through. We have been able to do some good things and bring in some good programs. I am leaving a time when things are moving forward here, and I just hope they continue to move forward."
Cannon County had a 72 percent graduation rate when Knox was named principal in 2009. It had an 89 percent graduation rate in 2012 - the highest in the history of the school. CCHS also enjoyed major gains in mathematics - improving by 30-to-40 percent in Algebra I and II, which is amongst the highest in Tennessee.
Discipline also has been impacted under Knox's watch as office referrals have been cut by 50 percent during the previous three years, and school fights also have significantly decreased. Knox believes discipline will continue to improve with a full-time SRO being hired into the school for the first time in 2013-14.
Knox is also responsible for starting programs at CCHS, such as the positive behavior support program as well as the PAWS 50-minute lunch program that has gained attention nationally.
"We have started some good programs and enjoyed some positive results," Knox said. "The thing I will miss most is the relationship with the teachers and students. It is a family-type atmosphere at Cannon County High School. We all wanted CCHS to be excellent and that's what we have strived to do. I'm excited about going to Coffee County High School and there are great people there. I will be working in school administration, which I've done the last eight years so it's right up my alley. I'm excited about the new challenges."
Registration for incoming freshmen at CCHS is Aug. 1, 6-8 p.m.