Parents/Guardians, I hope everyone enjoyed the summer.  We are excited for the start of the new school year and hope that you and your students are also excited.  The Hamblen County Department of Education (HCDOE) is committed to providing a high-quality education to all students based on their unique learning needs.  As we start the new year, I want to bring a few items to your attention and ask that you discuss and review these items with your students.



The HCDOE Dress Code is captured in Board Policy 6.310 .  The code is written to foster a learning environment and to minimize distractions.  Your help in this area to ensure students are adhering to the policy will alleviate the need for our faculty members to expend time addressing issues and allow them to focus on educating students.



The HCDOE Cell Phone Policy (Use of Personal Communication Devices and Electronic Devices) is captured in Board Policy 6.312 .  The policy is also written to foster a learning environment and to minimize distractions.  This is another area I ask that you help ensure students know and adhere to the policy as it will alleviate time demands of our administrators.



Last year, I sent each parent/guardian a note and we posted it on our website, ( Last year’s note link) , on this topic.  HCDOE takes the safety of every student and staff member seriously.  We treat any threat seriously and will work with law enforcement to investigate and hold individuals accountable.



The state of Tennessee passed a law requiring signed parent/guardian permission for students to participate in any extracurricular activities or surveys.  Please be responsive when these forms are brought home as we will not be able to allow participation without signed forms.



A survey was conducted last year involving students in the 8th, 10th, and 12th grades.  While the number of survey participants was not large, there were some noteworthy takeaways.  The survey indicates the age of first use of vapes, alcohol and other substances is decreasing.  A higher-than-expected number responded that they felt parents/guardians would not be overly upset if they found out their students used vapes, alcohol, and/or other substances.  Finally, almost half responded their parents/guardians had not discussed the dangers of substance abuse within the last year.  Please discuss these subjects with your students.  If you need additional information on these areas, please let us know and we will work with you.



HCDOE remains committed to parent/guardian involvement.  We want you to take great interest in the education of your students.  I ask that you reach out to the Teachers and Principals to discuss items first as they are the ones closest to any situations and know the most about what is happening in the schools.


Again, we are excited to start the new school year.  We look forward to working for and with you and your students this year.  HCDOE is shaping Hamblen County’s future one student at a time.