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Jo Landreth Named Ira B. Jones Elementary’s New Assistant Principal

The first week of school is always marked by learning the names of new students.  For Jo Landreth that number hovers around 415.  

     As Ira B. Jones Elementary School’s new assistant principal, she spent the first week in her new position not only putting faces to names but also learning who teaches what at each grade level. 

     A veteran educator who worked at Asheville Middle School for more than 20 years, Landreth is “excited to be able to go into the classrooms as [she] personally pieces together what happens before [she] ever saw kids at the middle school level.” 

     Having served as a substitute teacher, 7th Grade English Language Arts/Social Studies teacher, Academically/Intellectually Gifted Specialist and as the AIG Secondary Lead Facilitator, Landreth has experience partnering with students, families and other educators.  She is additionally dedicated to fostering classroom environments conducive to learning and promoting excellent student/teacher interactions. 

     “Getting to know the kids, that’s been my favorite part,” said Landreth.  “I’m really excited to work with Ms. Cain. We’ve known each other for a long time, and I think, together, we can run things smoothly here at the school so the teachers can focus on what they’re  here to do, which is teaching our students.” 

     A student-first educator, Landreth has stepped in whenever and however needed throughout her Asheville City Schools tenure.  From serving as Asheville Middle’s golf and cheerleading coach to leading its National Junior Honor Society for more than 10 years, Landreth’s goal has always been for every student to come to school and learn something new every day in every class. 

     This passion earned Landreth the distinction of both Asheville Middle School’s and Asheville City Schools’ 2008-2009 Teacher of the Year.  She too was named the 2009-2010 North Carolina West Region Teacher of the Year, which allowed her to serve on the State Superintendent’s Teacher Advisory Council for two years.   

     A lifelong learner, Landreth is dedicated to not only enhancing her own leadership capacity but also championing newer colleagues as they learn to truly love the profession. 

     “One of the things that really interests me is helping young teachers to develop their leadership,” said Landreth.  “I think it’s incredibly important to have more veteran status teachers mentor newer teachers and explain that they do have a vital role to play in the future of education.  Regardless of what role I’ve been in, I’ve always tried to do whatever was in my ability to help teachers be leaders.” 

     As Ira B. Jones’ new assistant principal, her ability to champion teacher leadership will only grow. 

     After graduating from the North Carolina School of Science and Math, Landreth received a  North Carolina Teaching Fellowship, which allowed her to earn a bachelor’s degree in History from the University of North Carolina at Asheville.  She too received her master’s degree in Educational Psychology of the Gifted and Talented from the University of Connecticut as well as her Graduate Certificate in Educational Leadership from Appalachian State University.  Landreth too holds North Carolina School Principal certification, North Carolina Academically and Intellectually Gifted certification as well as a certificate from the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards.  

     She is also a current Board Member for the North Carolina Association of the Gifted and Talented as well as the North Carolina Association of Scholastic Activities. 

     When Landreth is away from school, she enjoys photography, hiking to waterfalls, spending time with family and caring for her 13 chickens.