Pathways to Excellence

A Monthly Newsletter from Shelby County Schools

November 2021

Happy Thanksgiving to all our Shelby County Schools employees! Also, we want to take this opportunity to recognize our teachers during Thank Alabama Teachers Week. Your hard work and dedication have not gone unnoticed! #ThankALTeachers
Thank AL Teachers Week

Board of Education Elects President and Vice President

The Board of Education held its annual election of officers at the November 18 meeting. Congratulations to Mr. Aubrey Miller for being re-elected as president of the board and to Mr. David Bobo for being re-elected as vice-president.
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13th Annual Taste of Shelby County Event Held at Inverness Country Club

The Shelby County Education Foundation hosted the 13th Annual Taste of Shelby County on November 4. The event brought together a slate of 11 restaurants, two breweries, and one winery along with over 100 guests in attendance. The event, which also featured a silent auction, raised almost $9,000 that will fund teacher grants. Special thanks to our sponsors America's First Federal Credit Union, Shelby LIving, University of Montevallo, AC Legg, Latham and Associates, Lindsay Allison, and Children's of Alabama for continuing to support the Shelby County Schools Education Foundation!
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Amanda Hamm Named Principal of Inverness Elementary

Amanda Hamm will serve as the next principal at Inverness Elementary School after being approved on November 18 by the Shelby County Board of Education. Hamm has ten years of experience in education and most recently served as the assistant principal at Inverness Elementary School. She started her career in education as a kindergarten teacher and also worked as an Instructional Coach for Shelby County Schools.


Hamm earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Special Education from the University of Alabama, a Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of West Alabama, certification in Instructional Leadership from the University of Montevallo, and an Education Specialist Degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of West Alabama.

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Dr. Lewis Brooks joined Mt Laurel Elementary teachers Aundria Blevins and Heather Braswell at the National Blue Ribbon Schools awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. on November 5.

Mt Laurel Elementary is one of five schools from Alabama that were honored as a National Blue Ribbon School for 2021. To view the entire ceremony click below:

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Mary Hall Honored with Counseling Award

Congratulations to Mary Hall, who serves as the counselor at Wilsonville Elementary and Shelby Elementary, for being awarded the Alabama Counseling Association's Wilburn Tincher Award for a Humanitarian and Caring Person.


Founded in 1966, the Alabama Counseling Association (ALCA) is an organization of counseling professionals who work in education, health care, residential, private practice, community agencies, government, and business/industry settings. Serving as a dynamic network of professional counselors in the State of Alabama, ALCA is devoted to professional development and maintenance of high standards for those involved in the counseling profession.

April Brand and Larry Haynes Honored By Alabama Association of Secondary School Principals

Two Shelby County Schools administrators were honored by the Alabama Association of Secondary School Principals for their outstanding educational leadership as the District 5 winners of High School Principal of the Year and Middle School Principal of the Year. The awards were presented during AASSP’s annual fall conference at the Grand Hotel in Fairhope.


April Brand, who served six years as principal at Helena High School before recently being named the district’s Coordinator of Secondary Education, was honored as the High School Principal of the Year for District 5.

Dr. Larry Haynes, who serves as the principal at Oak Mountain Middle School, was honored as the Middle School Principal of the Year for District 5. Haynes, who has served as principal at OMMS for 17 years, is also a finalist for the overall state award, which will be announced in the spring.


“Congratulations to two outstanding school leaders, April Brand, and Larry Haynes, on your recognition as Principals of the Year,” said Dr. Lewis Brooks, Superintendent of Education. “Shelby County Schools is proud of your commitment to excellence in education and leadership.”

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