Our Schools

District Leadership

Dr. Tony Tipton, Interim Superintendent

Photo of Superintendent Tony Tipton

Dr. Tipton began his career in 1985 as a 5th and 6th grade social studies and physical education teacher at Bowman Middle School in Mitchell County.  In 1987, he returned to his hometown of Burnsville to teach 7th and 8th grade physical education at East Yancey Middle School.  He remained there until 1991 when he was hired to teach social studies at Mountain Heritage High School.

In addition to teaching, Dr. Tipton was a middle school basketball and football coach for six years, and he coached various high school sports including girls’ basketball and track in his nine years at Mountain Heritage.  He was also athletic director at Mountain Heritage for three years and was honored three times as the Western Highlands Conference Coach of the Year. 

Dr. Tipton transitioned to school administration in 1999 as assistant principal at Cane River Middle School in Burnsville.  He returned to Mountain Heritage High School as assistant principal in 2002 and became principal at Madison High School in 2007 where he was recognized as the Madison County Principal of the Year in 2010.  He was named superintendent in Yancey County in 2011 and retired in 2018.

Dr. Tipton received a Bachelor’s Degree in Intermediate Education from Mars Hill College in 1984 and a Master of Arts in Education Degree from WCU in 1989.   He received an Education Specialist in School Administration Degree from WCU in 1994, and he completed his Doctor of Education Degree at ETSU in 2007.

He has been married for 41 years to his high school sweetheart, Barbara, and they have three children and two grandchildren.  Dr. Tipton has always tried to be a voice for all children.  His favorite quote is from Dr. Seuss:  "To the world, you may be one person; but to one person, you may be the world." 

Jacob Buchanan, Assistant Superintendent

Assistant Superintendent, Jacob Buchanan

Mr. Buchanan began his educational career in 2001 teaching social studies at Smoky Mountain High School.  He became assistant principal at Scotts Creek School in 2010.  He served the district as director of middle and secondary education in 2012 prior to becoming principal at Smoky Mountain High School in 2013.  Under his leadership, Smoky Mountain moved into the top 5% of high schools in North Carolina in both academic growth and graduation rate.

Mr. Buchanan completed his Bachelor’s Degree in History from King College in 1999.  He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education Social Studies in 2001 and a Master’s Degree in School Administration in 2009 from Western Carolina University.  In 2017, he received an Education Specialist Degree from Clemson University and will complete his Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Clemson in 2019.

Mr. Buchanan received National Board Certification in 2005.  He was selected as the Jackson County Teacher of the Year in 2007 and the Jackson County Principal of the Year in 2015.  He became assistant superintendent in June 2018.

Former Superintendent Dr. Kim Elliott said, "Mr. Buchanan is a true asset to Jackson County Public Schools.  He shares my vision for safe schools and excellence in teaching and learning.  Mr. Buchanan cares deeply about students and their success.  Students have always come first and will continue to do so in Jackson County."
 

Directors & Coordinators

Dr. Kevin Bailey

Executive Director of Human Resources
Dr. Kevin Bailey
Executive Director of Human Resources
 
  • Recruitment and Retention
  • Grievances
  • Worker's Compensation
  • Beginning Teachers
  • Personnel Records
  • Title IX
  • District Athletics
  • Contracts


(828) 586-2311 ext. 1925

Laura Cabe

School Nutrition Director
Laura Cabe
School Nutrition Director
 
  • Food Production & Service
  • Purchasing & Contracting
  • Equipment & Facility Management
  • Federal Compliance Monitoring

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1936

Sarah Davis

Student Data Coordinator
Sarah Davis
Student Data Coordinator
 
  • Student Data Management
  • Federal & State Compliance Reporting
  • Transcripts

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1932

Angie Dills

Chief Academic Officer
Angie Dills
Chief Academic Officer
 
  • Director of Career/Technical, Middle & Secondary Education
  • Curriculum, Grades 6-12 & CTE
  • College & Career Readiness
  • STEM
  • Title II
  • School Improvement
  • Impact Aid & Indian Education
  • Beginning Teachers

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1954

Laura Dills

Executive Director of Federal Programs & Elementary Education
Laura Dills
Executive Director of Federal Programs & Elementary Education
 
  • Elementary Curriculum
  • Title I
  • Title II
  • Title III/LEP
  • AIG
  • Homeless
  • Beginning Teachers

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1950

Kelly Doppke

Director of Student Support Services
Kelly Doppke
Director of Student Support Services
 
  • Exceptional Children
  • School Counselors
  • School Nurses
  • School Psychologists
  • Social Workers
  • 504 Compliance

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1928

Woody Dotson

Transportation coordinator
Woody Dotson
Transportation Coordinator
Josh Francis

Josh Francis

Transportation Director
Josh Francis
Transportation Director
 
  • Routing
  • Vehicle Maintenance
  • Driver & Vehicle Assignment

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1802

Adam Holt

Director of Testing & Accountability
Adam Holt
Director of Testing & Accountability
 
  • EOG/EOC Testing
  • NCFE, ACT
  • MTSS
  • Benchmark Assessments
  • Compliance Monitoring
  • SchoolNet

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1940

Jeremiah Jackson

Chief Technology Officer
Jeremiah Jackson
Chief Technology Officer
 
  • Network Operations & Infrastructure
  • Network Applications & Related Services
  • Digital Learning Initiatives
  • Purchasing & Inventory
  • Technical Support

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1947

David Proffitt

Chief Communications Officer

David Proffitt
Chief Communications Officer

  • Public Communication
  • Media Relations
  • Content Development
  • Media Production

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1937

Photo of Brent Speckhardt

Brent Speckhardt

Director of professional development & teacher growth

Brent Speckhardt
Director of Professional Development & Teacher Growth

  • Beginning Teachers
  • Instructional Coaches
  • Professional Development
  • Instructional Resources


(828) 586-2311 ext. 1971

Jason Watson

Director of Operations & Logistics

Jason Watson
Director of Operations & Logistics

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1927