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New Hamilton County superintendent visits schools on first day of classes

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Dr. Bryan Johnson Dr. Bryan Johnson
HAMILTON COUNTY, TN -

Hamilton County is starting their new school year Thursday with a new leader. Dr. Bryan Johnson dropped in at schools across the district to meet with students, parents and faculty to kick off the school year.

"I intend to be a very visible superintendent, that's working alongside the principals and teachers and community and obviously students to support the learning that's taking place,” explained Dr. Johnson.

The district’s top leader has spent the last couple of weeks on his ‘Listening Tour’ to hear the concerns and needs from each corner of the county.

"The opportunities for all students has been the focus across the board. So it's an area we want to ensure we're providing for every student,” Dr. Johnson said.

The Nashville native has been public about his opinion regarding I-Zone schools, he said it's time to stop calling them ‘bad schools’ and give them the support they need.

One of the five schools is Woodmore Elementary, a school met with many challenges over the last nine months.

"Obviously a horrific tragedy that took place last year and we just want them to know we stand with them and support them and we're here for them in any way we can be,” he said.

Woodmore's new principal, Dionne Upton said the community support has been overwhelming over the last year. While they want to move forward, they know for some it's still top of mind for the community.

"We're going to address them, we're not going to avoid them because we know that it's still on their minds but we do have some support staff services in the building,” Upton said.

It's reassuring for parents like Talisa Stevenson who considers Woodmore a family.

"Woodmore has been very supportive ever since, even before the accident. The staff here is really nice and their like family,” Stevenson said.

When asked where doctor Johnson wants to be in one year from now he said student achievement for all is paramount.

"We’ve listened to the community, we've responded with urgency, we've moved student learning forward and students are succeeding and afforded the opportunities to be successful,” Dr. Johnson said.

Dr. Johnson will end his day with a listening tour at Red Bank Baptist church at 6:30 p.m. He has seven more stops on his listening tour, including the one Thursday night through the rest of the month.

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