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Leigh Burks is the new assistant principal for Red Bay Elementary School.

Leigh Burks joins RBES staff

Red Bay Elementary School will have a new assistant principal, Leigh Burks, after Johnny Cleveland vacated the position to become the Franklin County Schools assistant superintendent.

Burks has spent 24 years in elementary classrooms, teaching first-, third- and fourth-graders. Fifteen of those years have been spent at Vina Elementary School.

“I love being in the classroom. It’s a rewarding job, but it was time for the next step for me,” Burks said.

A year ago she earned her administrative degree and has been waiting for the right opportunity. When she learned that Red Bay had an opening, Burks said she was eager to apply for the position.

“I’m excited about the leadership role,” she said.

During her years at Vina, Burks exercised her leadership capabilities by being in charge of committees and being a mentor for other teachers. She has also participated in various professional development courses since earning her administrative degree.

One thing that Burks said she has heard about Red Bay and is looking forward to is how the administrators, teachers and staff are known for treating each other like family and working well as a team.

“It’s bittersweet leaving Vina, but Red Bay has already made me feel so welcomed,” Burks said.

Burks said she knows several of the teachers already, and she is excited to get to know the rest of them. Being a teacher herself for so many years, Burks is confident her experiences will help her better connect with the teachers.

“I want to take all that I’ve done and learned and use it to help guide and teach them,” Burks said.

Her goal is to continuously keep growing, provide a safe environment for the children and make sure they are learning.

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