OUR VIEW: Johnson will be missed at TCSS

Published 10:30 am Tuesday, July 20, 2021

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Dr. Penny Johnson, an assistant superintendent in the Troup County School System announced her retirement last week.

For those of you without students in the school system — or folks who are unable to attend a school board meeting regularly — the name Penny Johnson may not ring a bell, but we guarantee you that many of the changes made in our local classrooms over the years can be traced back to her impact.

Often working behind the scenes in her role, Johnson had an enormous impact on our schools over the last nine years.

She has a job title so long that we usually try to get creative working it in stories.

Her official position is assistant superintendent of curriculum, instruction and professional learning, which may make it sound like she does a bit of everything. And that appears to be the truth.

If you’ve been to a board meeting, Johnson usually spends several minutes at the podium, explaining the intricacies of a new curriculum purchase or going into detail about why graduation rates are going up or why a specific grade level might’ve been better or worse this year on the Georgia Milestones testing.

She worked for two superintendents, and from an outside perspective, we’d say she played a large role in helping TCSS move from one to the other. 

Johnson was recognized at the end of last week’s school board meeting, and she was understandably emotional as she stood before the board for the last time. We’re sure it was hard to say goodbye, but it’s going to be just as hard for TCSS to find someone who can do all she provided over the years.

Johnson will stay involved in schools, moving over to Dadeville High School in Alabama for a new position.

But she’ll be missed in Troup County where her knowledge and professionalism were a huge asset to the school system.