New Danville High principal Brian Ellis wants to provide students quality of life
By Erica Smith
For the Enquirer
Brian Ellis, the new principal of Danville High School, said he hopes to work with faculty as they seek to improve the future prospects for students.
“I hope to just afford the students and community the best educational experience possible and provide opportunities for them and learning experiences that prepare them for the workforce or a collegiate experience after school, (that) put them in the best possible vehicle for improved quality of life,” said Ellis, who was hired to the position last month.
Classes begin at Danville High and other schools in the Morgan County system on Tuesday.
Tracie Turrentine, Morgan County Schools superintendent, said the former principal, Marty Chambers, resigned effective the end of the 2022-23 school year. Ellis was hired at the July 13 Board of Education meeting. Turrentine said a committee chose Ellis and proposed to the school board that he be hired.
“We have a committee of a teacher, a parent and directors from central office,” she said.
Ellis, 38, from Neel, was the assistant principal at Falkville High School for the past two years. This is his first time as a principal.
“Danville High School has a ton of talented teachers and it’s a school that has a lot of pride in the way that they’ve carried themselves the last 20, 30 years,” Ellis said. “I want to get there and try to help them continue that and then any area that we can look to improve, collectively, we want to do that.
“But I want it to be a shared vision among the faculty and staff and I want to move the school forward, collectively, with the group in the areas that … we feel like we need to improve upon.”
Ellis started his career in 2009 teaching math at Falkville High and coached football, basketball and baseball there. After three years, he became the school counselor at the Morgan County Learning Center and coached basketball and baseball at Danville High for about six years.
After that, Ellis became the school counselor for four years at Danville High and continued to coach basketball and baseball.
Turrentine said Ellis’ innovative approach makes him a good fit for the position of principal.
“He’s got ideas and ways to make Danville High School better as we move forward,” she said.
Danville High is included in board member Adam Glenn’s District 2.
“I think Brian cares about our kids, cares about our community,” he said. “I think he’s taken the proper steps through his career to prepare him for this. But I do think he’s invested in our school and our community, and he cares for our children.”
Ellis received his bachelor’s degree in mathematics with a minor in education from Athens State University. He received a master’s in school counseling from the University of West Alabama and an educational specialist degree from Samford University. Ellis also received a doctorate in educational leadership from Lipscomb University.