Staff Photo by Angela Lewis Foster | Butterflies fill the window in the art room Wednesday, October 26, 2015 at St. Nicholas School. The school will open a program for three-year-olds in August 2021.

Signal Mountain Christian School principal retiring

Signal Mountain Christian School's principal, Danette Kelley, is retiring after 14 years in the role.

Kelley is the parent of a former student at the SMCS and previously served on the board with her husband. The private K-5 school opened for kindergarten and first grade in 1998, adding other grade levels in 2001.

"In many ways Danette is the heart and soul of the school. She and her husband Pat have been involved for 22 of the 23 years that SMCS has been in operation," said board chairman David Moss in a statement. "She has touched the lives of hundreds of students and parents, and she has guided us safely through growth and many changes."

The school's board has created a search committee to find a replacement for Kelley, who will remain principal until a new principal is hired. An application will soon be posted to the school's website, and applicants can contact Kelley or Leslie Dunn at the school at 423-886-1115 or at 808 Key Hulse Road, Signal Mountain, TN, 37377.


Tennessee Department of Education requesting vendor applications for new AP program

The Tennessee Department of Education is requesting applications from vendors to help create a program that expands access to Advanced Placement courses across the state.

The $10 million grant, funded through federal coronavirus relief money, will be awarded to one grantee to develop the "AP Access for All" program, which aims to provide AP classes virtually and enable students to enroll in AP classes not offered at their high school. Also, the program will train and support new and current AP teachers.

"This new grant will provide more low income and rural Tennessee students with access to AP courses while eliminating financial barriers to taking the AP exam and will invest in our teachers to deepen their content knowledge and help them promote the benefits of postsecondary readiness to their students," said the state's education commissioner, Penny Schwinn, in a written statement.

Applications can be found on the TDOE website and are due April 9.


Georgia Northwestern Technical College opens storefront in partnership with Junior Achievement

Georgia Northwestern Technical College has opened a storefront in Dalton for students to learn and practice financial skills.

The Junior Achievement Discovery Center of Greater Dalton on the campus of Hammond Creek Middle School will serve as an experiential learning area where middle school students can practice interacting in hands-on business and personal finance experiences through the JA BizTown and JA Finance Park programs.

The center will be accessible to middle school students from Northwest Georgia school districts including Calhoun City Schools, Dalton Public Schools, Gordon County Schools, Murray County Schools and Whitfield County Schools.

The facility is the fourth JA Discovery Center to open in Georgia and joins Discovery Centers in Atlanta, Cumming and Lawrenceville.


St. Nicholas School expanding program to three-year-olds

St. Nicholas School is opening up to 3-year-olds with a new program.

The program follows a similar approach to its current programs that serve Pre-K students, focusing on their curiosity through problem-solving and discovery. Art, chapel, movement music and Spanish are other aspects incorporated into the program.

Opening in August, the hours for the program will be from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday, with after-school care available.

Interested families can contact admissions director Cori Hasden at 423-899-1999 or for a tour.

Contact Anika Chaturvedi at or 423-757-6592.