Putnam County Schools announce administrative faculty changes

Pictured, top row l. to r.: Dr. Sharon Anderson and Russell (Rusty) Darley. Bottom row, l. to r.: Jessica Etheredge, Dr. Chris (Bubba) Winningham, and Ron Chaffin.

PUTNAM COUNTY – The Putnam County School System is excited to announce new administrative faculty assignments for the 2022-23 school year. As the current school year comes to a close, it is often expected to see a shift in faculty and staff as team members retire or seek transfers to other positions. 

“When changes in leadership assignments take place, it often creates a domino effect within the district,” said Corby King, Director of Schools for Putnam County. “It is critical that we have the right people to lead our schools and programs. Our district is fortunate to have outstanding teachers and administrators that have huge hearts for students that are ready and willing to lead our schools. We are excited to welcome these PCSS leaders into their new positions.”

Here are the faculty moves for the 2022-2023 school year:

Dr. Chris (Bubba) Winningham, current Algood Middle School principal, will be transitioning into the 5-12 grade Instructional Supervisor. Dr. Sharon Griggs retired as the 5-8 Instructional Supervisor on June 30, 2022, after 35 years of service with the Putnam County schools. 

Winningham holds his Bachelor of Science degree in Secondary Education, master’s degree in Instructional Leadership and an education specialist degree from Tennessee Technological University. In 2017, he completed his doctoral degree from East Tennessee State University. In 2007, Winningham began his career teaching social studies at the high school level and transitioned to White Plains Academy social studies teacher in 2008. He taught 7-12 grades for eight years before joining the staff at Algood Middle School as assistant principal. Winningham has spent the last four years as the principal at Algood Middle School. 

“I am very honored and grateful for the opportunity to serve Putnam County as the new 5-12 instructional supervisor,” said Dr. Winningham. “I will miss Algood Middle and the wonderful teachers and staff I have worked with for seven years. I look forward to working with Putnam County middle and high school administrators, teachers and families to ensure every student has the tools they need to be successful.”

Russell (Rusty) Darley, current Cookeville High School assistant principal, will assume the principal role at Algood Middle School. 

Serving as one of the assistant principals at Cookeville High School for the past five years, Darley brings experience, leadership and passion for promoting excellence and growth in his new role. His education began at Georgia College and State University, where he earned his Bachelor of Science in health education. He earned his master’s in health and physical education at Tennessee Technological University, and twelve years later, received his Education Specialist Degree in curriculum and instruction. In 2016, Darley earned his education specialist degree in Administration and Supervision from Tennessee State University in Nashville. Currently, he is working to obtain his education doctorate from Tennessee State University and expects to graduate in spring 2023. 

“I am very excited to have the opportunity to serve as principal at Algood Middle School,” said Darley. “I look forward to building relationships with the faculty and staff, meeting the students and continuing to grow the school academically and the positive culture within the building.” 

Dr. Sharon Anderson, current 9-12 instructional supervisor, is transitioning into continuous improvement supervisor. A position that will lead initiatives, oversee state compliance reports, lead the district and school improvement plan processes, manage university research requests and lead initiatives that improve district performance. 

Anderson holds over 38 years of experience in education, with 26 of those years in Putnam County, and brings a wealth of knowledge to the Continuous Improvement role. Anderson will also continue coordinating all fine arts activities in grades K-12 as well district celebrations. 

“In my time as 9-12 Supervisor, some of my responsibilities included continuous improvement and coordinating fine arts. It is a natural transition for me to move into this position and focus on leading ways we can continue to improve the district’s academic performance and more intently focus my efforts on fine arts as well,” said Dr. Anderson. 

Jessica Etheredge, current Algood Middle School assistant principal, will transition to Upperman Middle School principal. Etheredge will be replacing Dr. Will Penner who is leaving the district to pursue other opportunities. 

Etheredge earned her Bachelor of Science degree in modified and comprehensive special education from Tennessee Technological University. In 2011, she earned her master’s in education in educational administration from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, AZ. Etheredge has fourteen years of education at the middle and high school levels. She has served as the assistant principal at Algood Middle School for the last four years and has built a strong and positive culture with teachers, staff and students. 

“I am honored to have the opportunity to join the Upperman Middle School (UMS) community as principal,” said Etheredge. “I am excited for the future of UMS, as I know it is full of fantastic faculty, staff, students and an amazing community backing it. I look forward to all the great traditions we will continue to grow in the future.”

The current PCSS Transportation operations assistant, Ron Chaffin, will be stepping into the PCSS Transportation Supervisor position after Kim Bradford, current Transportation Supervisor, announced her retirement from the system after 35 years of service. 

Chaffin is certified as a Supervisor in Pupil Transportation (CSPT) by The National Association of Pupil Transportation Foundation (NAPT) and certified as a Third-Party Commercial Driver’s License Examiner for the State of Tennessee. Chaffin most recently completed Transportation Supervisor Training for The State of Tennessee and gained his certification in Reasonable Suspicion of Drug and Alcohol Awareness. He is a Tennessee Association of Pupil Transportation (TAPT) member.

“My main primary goal is to provide the safest transportation possible for our students,” said Chaffin. “I feel like we can achieve this goal with everyone working together as a team. I have worked with Kim for many years and respect her. I am honored to step into this role.”

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