Jeannette M. Hallam

East Coweta Middle School
Coweta County School System
Senoia, Georgia

Dr. Jeannette M. Hallam’s leadership motto is to “learn, lead, and serve.” In her five years as principal of East Coweta Middle School (ECMS), Hallam has lived this philosophy by creating a supportive and caring environment where teachers want to teach and students want to learn. As a result, her tenure has been marked by sustained academic growth and high retention, with ECMS boasting the lowest turnover rate in the district. Hallam’s leadership is also deeply collaborative. Upon taking the helm at ECMS, she identified grade-level reading proficiency as a target for growth and worked with her Language Arts team to chart a course for improvement. A core element of this plan was creating conditions for students to connect with their love of reading by building classroom libraries with grade-appropriate material and integrating time for leisure reading into the school schedule, efforts which facilitated a 4.32-point increase in literacy scores in just one year. These gains have been supported by strengthened relationships with families and community members, who Hallam believes are “the backbone of what we can accomplish in our classrooms.” Her welcoming, hands-on approach to stakeholder engagement, which includes a commitment to personally call all incoming sixth grade families, has improved trust and collaboration with families. Hallam holds Education Specialist and Doctor of Education degrees from Liberty University and a Master of Education from the University of West Georgia.