The Marietta school board, which accepted Marietta Middle School Principal Tim Jones’ resignation earlier this week, will vote this morning on his replacement.
Jones was named the new principal at B.E.S.T. (Business, Engineering, Science and Technology) Academy High School at Benjamin S. Carson off Hollowell Parkway in Atlanta on July 1.
School Board Chairman Randy Weiner said there are two “very strong” candidates that the board, district staff and parent-teacher group at Marietta Middle are considering for hire.
“I’m saddened that he is leaving but understand that this is a big promotion for him and wish him all the best,” Weiner said. “He was a great leader at Marietta Middle School.”
Jones, who began his profession in education in 1991 at an elementary school in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., has worked in the Marietta school district since 2001 and been the principal at Marietta Middle since 2010.
“Leaving Marietta City is very difficult for me because it’s such a supportive environment, it’s like a family and I was there for 12 years … any transition in any form is never easy, personally or professionally, but my departure comes with angst and excitement,” Jones said Wednesday.
After earning his doctorate degree in gender-based education, Jones said he has been very interested in working in a single-gender school like B.E.S.T., which serves about 300 students in ninth through 12th grade.
Marietta Middle had about 1,200 students enrolled last school year.
“I think this opportunity is one of those undeserved blessings that life gives you,” Jones said. “I just feel that this is a rare opportunity to align my personal inspiration with what I believe is my life calling.”
Atlanta Public Schools was unable to provide what Jones’ new salary will be and Jones declined to specify, but did say it was “significantly” higher than the $119,460 he received at Marietta Middle.
While working in the Marietta system, Jones was also an assistant principal at Park Street Elementary, principal at Pine Forest Elementary, which is now Marietta Center for Advanced Academics, and worked as the district’s director of school improvement and director of elementary curriculum.
Marietta Superintendent Emily Lembeck said that during Jones’ tenure at Marietta Middle, he led the school to improved student achievement, a positive learning culture and increased communication with parents.
“In the selection of a new principal, I certainly want to not just sustain this progress, but to take our seventh and eighth grades to the next level,” she said.
Lembeck said she would like for Jones’ replacement to be a strong instructional leader possessing vision and experience, who will work hard and support teachers to be successful in raising the achievement of students at all levels.
“Engaging students at that age can be a challenge, but it is important to have leadership that embraces new learning opportunities such as Project Engage,” Lembeck said.
Project Engage is a middle school program the board approved last spring that targets students who are interested in online learning.