The staff of Andersonville Elementary, in partnership with parents and the community, will provide the opportunity, the environment, and the differentiated instruction necessary for all students to develop a strong foundation enabling them to become active participants in a global society. The academic, physical, and social skills achieved, as set forth by the Tennessee Performance Goals, will provide the framework for further success upon completion of the elementary years.
Our Shared Vision
Andersonville Elementary School’s Vision, through a partnership of highly qualified teachers and staff, parents, administrators and community members, is to create a community of support for each individual child. The partnership will encourage and support every student’s development as independent thinkers, and instill a desire in becoming responsible life long learners.
1. All children have the right to learn and to succeed in order to become productive citizens.
2. Teachers, parents, and the community share the responsibility for the support of the school’s mission and for creating a safe and positive learning environment.
3. Curriculum and instruction based on developmentally appropriate learning skills, researched-based programs, and proven best practices.
4. High expectations increase individual student performance, quality of work, and self-esteem.
5. When students understand the rationale behind the learning process, they become confident, highly motivated, active learners.
6. Time provided for individual creativity, decision making, and personal goal setting promotes student success.
7. Communication and problem solving skills are crucial elements for success in school life.
The bell first shows up in old photographs of Andersonville Institute. The bell sat atop this 2 story clapboard building church like building. The bell served the school and the community. The ringing of the bell drew the students to school and also served as a way to draw the community together if an emergency or announcement needed to be made. When the old school was torn down more modern looking two story brick building was built in its place. In this brick building the bell had a prominent and tempting location at the top of the stairs. More than one student was subjected to punishment for ringing the bell when they were passing by it. When this school had become out of date and had fallen into disrepair. The building no longer served high school students who now attended Norris High School. The county decided to replace the two story building with a more modern and one story elementary school. While the new school was being built the students were divided between the fire hall, Glen Alpine School, and Belmont School. In three years it is reopened as Andersonville Elementary School, however, the bell isn't given a prominent location and in a short period of time the bell is pretty much forgotten.
I grew up in Andersonville and attended there as a child. My next door neighbors, Mrs. Bonnie Irwin Carden and Ms. Winnie Irwin, would tell me stories of what life was like when they were little girls. Both ladies attended Andersonville Institute. Mrs. Bonnie would tell me that as a student they had to walk to the well for water and if you were lucky a boy you liked was asked to go with you. She told me that if the teacher knew you were sweet on the boy she wouldn't pick him and that you had to trick her into thinking you didn't like the boy. She also told me about the bell. When asked about the present whereabouts of the bell, however, Mrs. Bonnie did not know. Curiosity led me to ask Mr. Ball, the principal of Andersonville in the late 80's, if he knew the location of the bell. Mr. York, the janitor, put an end to the mystery of the missing bell by locating it behind the boiler in the janitor's area. I remember the day. It was a fun and heavy find. Mr. Ball had the bell placed by the front entrance in a flower garden. Renovation to Andersonville found the bell a new and once again prominent home at the entrance to Andersonville Elementary School. For me the bell is a link to the early importance of education in our community. -Emily Wallace Haverkamp AES teacher
History of the School
Education has been important to the Andersonville community since the first school was established in 1830 on land donated by descendants of the community's founding family. In 1873, the first school was replaced by Big Valley Academy, a grade school financed by the sale of shares of stock to the citizens of Andersonville. The Academy served the community until Andersonville Institute replaced it in 1898.
Prior to 1900, education in rural East Tennessee was limited to grade school. Few high schools existed and there were not any located in this area. Seeing a need for higher education, the Clinton Baptist Association bought Big Valley Academy, renamed it Andersonville Institute, and expanded the curriculum to include high school. In addition to the large two-story school building, Andersonville Institute had two nearby dormitories, one for women and one for men. While most of the grade school students lived locally, the high schools majority was of boarding students. Clinton Hall, the men's dormitory, still stands as a private residence across the road from the school.
In 1923, ownership of the school was taken over by the Anderson County School Board and renamed Andersonville High and Elementary School. The school became Andersonville Elementary in 1938 when the high school students moved to the newly built Norris High School in nearby Norris. In 1958, the old school was destroyed and a new school was built on the site.