A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

New principal at John G. Carlisle Elementary in Covington strives to see students reach their dreams

Debra Vance
Special to the NKyTribune

When Tara Bell moved to Kentucky 16 years ago to begin her teaching career, she immediately fell in love with the students and families of Covington.

Tara Bell is the new principal at John G. Carlisle Elementary (provided photo).

“My desire has always been to see the students of Covington reach their full potential and achieve their dreams,’’ she said.    “I believe that all students can learn at high levels and that all students deserve to attend high performing schools. Several years ago my passion and love for teaching and the students of Covington led me to seek a degree in administration and move to Covington to help serve the community. ‘’

Bell, who moved to the commonwealth from Tennessee, has spent her entire educational career in Covington Schools as a teacher and an instructional coach.  Her desire to see student reach their dreams has taken her on a new journey – the principal of John G. Carlisle Elementary School.

The school-based school council at John G. Carlisle announced her new position earlier this month.

“I am excited to be the new principal of John G. Carlisle because I believe the faculty and staff share the same passion to serve the students and families of Covington,’’ Bell said.  “I am excited to embark on the journey they have already started to serve their community and create a school that meets the needs of all students emotionally and academically.’’

Covington Superintendent Alvin Garrison said the council made an excellent selection in Bell.

“She will provide strong instructional leadership and will build rapport with teachers, students and families,’’ he said.

Bell replaces Joy Collins, who took another job last year.  Bell began her career at Glenn O. Swing Elementary, where she taught for 13 years – four years in kindergarten, one year in a Kindergarten/First grade split, and eight years as third grade teacher.

She begins her new assignment on July 1.

Bell said she wants students to be excited about coming to school each day because they feel loved, challenged, and supported. It is her desire to develop a sense of pride in the community about John G. Carlisle and its commitment to meeting all the needs of children.

In addition, Bell wants to stay the course that John G. has started with Professional Learning Communities and the instructional focus that is valued by staff.

“It is my plan to continue to develop this culture and climate of collaboration among faculty and staff so that students can learn at high levels,’’ she said. “It will be my goal as a part of the John G. Carlisle team to help the school become a Distinguished and High Performing school where teachers, students, and staff believe they can reach their wildest dreams.”

Debra Vance is director of communications and equity for Covington Independent Public Schools

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