Morristown-Hamblen High School East will be a paragon of excellence in the district, region, and state in academics, instruction, and the intellectual/social development of empowered lifelong learners.
Statement of Beliefs
Student learning is our primary goal and, thus, guides all site-based decisions.
Student learning is enhanced by a safe and physically comfortable environment.
Students are valued as individuals with unique physical, social, emotional, and intellectual needs.
Students are empowered to learn when they are engaged in the learning process.
Students become more confident, independent learners when there is a commitment to continuous improvement.
A student's character is cultivated through positive relationships, mutual respect, and opportunities to perform leadership roles.
Student assessments provide a variety of meaningful opportunities for students to demonstrate their achievement and mastery of skills.
The participation of stakeholders (i.e. parent/guardians, local businesses, social workers, etc.) is imperative for the success of the school and the community.
Morristown High School was built in 1923 and was admitted to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Isenberg-Siler Gymnasium was added in 1954 and the third floor was added in 1955. The south wing was added in 1968. A major renovation occurred in 1989 at a cost of 8.9 million dollars. A 1.3 million dollar library was opened in 2004 and was named in memory of Dr. Joe E. Gibson, Sr., former School Board Member and East High supporter.
The school changed names in 1968 and has been known as Morristown-Hamblen High School East since that time. The building is of traditional style and is located approximately one-half mile from the center of downtown Morristown. Morristown High School was known originally as the Golden Hurricanes. In recent years, the mascot name was changed to the Hurricanes. The symbol used in earlier years was a tornado. However, our newest logo is that of a hurricane, created especially for East High School by a design artist from New Jersey. The main building at Morristown East has sixty eight classrooms, a cafeteria, an auditorium, and a gymnasium. There is also an annex at the rear of the building that has three classrooms.
As of August 5, 2019, the total number of students enrolled at MHHSE is 1529. Of those, 427 were Freshmen, 399 were Sophomores, 352 were Juniors, and 352 were Seniors. The student body distribution is 52% Males and 48% Females.
The ethnic makeup of the student body is representative of the ethnic makeup of the community with students who report as 68% White, 24% Hispanic, 6% African American, 1% Asian, and 1% American Indian/Alaskan Native/Pacific Islander.
Faculty and Teacher Credentials
There are currently 4 administrators, 98 teachers, and 46 support staff at MHHSE. Of the certified administrative and faculty members 41%, or 39 teachers, are male and 59%, or 57 teachers, are female. The faculty of MHHSE is relatively young, with 52%, or 50 teachers, having less ten years of teaching experience. Eleven percent, or 11 teachers and/or administrators, have more than 30 years of teaching experience. An analysis of the faculty demographics shows that 3%, or 3 teachers, hold an Associate's Degree and the remaining 97%, or 93 teachers, hold at least a Bachelor's Degree. Of the 93 teachers who hold a bachelor's degree, 63%, or 60 teachers, have also earned higher degrees. Forty-six teachers, or 48% of the faculty, currently hold a Master's Degree, 12 teachers, or 13% of the faculty currently holds an Educational Specialist Degree, and 2 teachers, or 2% of the faculty, currently hold a Doctorate Degree.
MHHSE provides academic and auxiliary accommodations to students with special needs.
The Special Education department provides academic aids including readers, note takers, peer tutors and sign language interpreters. Auxiliary aids include large print editions of textbooks, and computers. At MHHSE, every effort is made to eliminate any physical or instructional barriers to ensure that all special needs students have an equal opportunity to receive an education commensurate with their individual abilities.
East High School is well equipped with the latest in technology. There are approximately 397 computers in the building. There is one full time computer technician assigned to and based at East High School. There are four fully equipped computer labs, as well as 32 student computers, a presentation station, and 4 catalog access stations in the library . Many of the teachers have at least one teacher computer station, while some also have a Twenty-First Century classroom set of computers. Computers are used for attendance, grade reporting, discipline and other student information throughout the school. Teachers also make use of such equipment as VCRs, DVD players, graphing calculators, cable television, and most recently, LCD projectors, InterWrite Pads and SmartBoards. East High is also provided with assistance from the Central Office Technology staff.
The curriculum at MHHSE covers a wide array of subjects and educational levels. The curriculum in all courses is aligned with goals and objectives from state academic content standards and state assessments. In preparation for implementation of the Tennessee Diploma Project, joint committees composed of the most experienced teachers from Morristown-Hamblen High School East (MHHSE) and Morristown-Hamblen High School West (MHHSW) worked for over three months on a Curriculum Mapping exercise to develop curriculum guidelines aligned with the states new requirements in math, science, U.S. History, and English. The curriculum guides were subsequently adopted for system-wide implementation in the fall of 2009. The courses offered at MHHSE meet state requirements for students in LRE, resource, regular, honors, Advanced Placement (AP), and/or elective classes. Additionally, each teacher is required to provide students a course syllabus at the beginning of each semester as a means of ensuring class continuity and to define the material being covered.
Core academic classes include English, mathematics, science, and social studies. Elective classes include agriculture, cosmetology, family and consumer science, business, visual art, marketing, driver education, theatre arts, weightlifting, instrumental music, vocal music, foreign language and a variety of vocational-technical classes. When placement decisions must be made for particular courses, criteria include testing, standardized test scores, teacher recommendation, and parent requests.
Students in grades nine through eleven have the opportunity to participate in the registration process in the spring of each year. Prior to registration, school counselors visit students through their English classes to discuss core requirements and elective opportunities. Students then use an electronic registration system to make requests for core and elective courses, with the assistance of the school counselors. A master schedule is prepared based on student requests submitted through the electronic system. The Central Office Curriculum Coordinator works closely with MHHSE teachers and administrators to provide them the most current information on the best available curriculum opportunities.
Incoming freshmen students and their parents meet with a team of teachers, guidance counselors, and administrators to register for classes, establish a four year academic plan, obtain information about extracurricular activities, and tour the facility. One week prior to the start of school, freshmen students and their parents attend an orientation where they receive more detailed information about expectations, meet their teachers and walk through their first semester schedule. This process helps to aid in a smoother transition into the high school.
Community / Parent Involvement
The parents of MHHSE students are encouraged by the administration and faculty to participate in the activities of the school. Parents are invited to both attend and participate directly in the many different events and activities conducted throughout the year at MHHSE. Parents serve in formal positions by being a part of the School Improvement Planning Committee.
The administration believes in an open-door policy, welcoming parents into the school at any time. Parents are encouraged to meet with the teachers when their student is making unsatisfactory progress in any subject. Teachers contact parents of these students every three weeks to report progress and to pursue options for potential improvement.
The Parent Portal, accessible by the Hamblen County Board of Education website (http://www.hcboe.net), gives parents and students access to real-time information including: attendance, grades and detailed assignment descriptions, school bulletins, lunch menus and even personal messages from the teacher. Additionally, parents can sign up for e-mail notifications based on their personal need. Summary reports of students' grades and attendance can be e-mailed daily, weekly or bi-weekly, depending on the needs of the parents. The goal of the Parent Portal is to create a better partnership and dialogue between MHHSE parents and teachers. The response has been overwhelmingly positive as parents become familiar with the system and take advantage of its capabilities.
A strong sense of tradition and community involvement is most evident in parent support for athletics and after school activities. Booster clubs perform many essential functions for the athletic and music programs. Throughout the year, booster clubs raise money, maintain uniforms, and act as good will ambassadors in the community.
Student Clubs and Organizations
MHHSE supports a number of student clubs and organizations. Our students have a variety of opportunities to participate in non-academic activities designed to allow them to pursue interests and develop leadership skills. The Student Council represents the student body and gives them a channel through which their opinions may be expressed and considered in the policy making decisions of the school.
A variety of clubs and organizations are active on campus, all of which are sponsored by a staff member and use central bookkeeping. Each group encourages students to become involved and participate in activities designed to promote the efforts of the organization. Active involvement enhances a student's high school career both academically and personally. Clubs include the Anime Club, Beta Club, DECA (Marketing), Drama Club, FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America), FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes), FCCLA (Family, Career, Community Leaders of America), Environmental Club, FFA (Future Farmers of America), FTA (Future Teachers of America), First Priority, Forensics, French Club, German Society, HOSA (Health Occupation Students of America), Interact Club, Key Club, NAC (Nutrition Advisory Council), Quill and Scroll (School Newspaper and Yearbook), Raisin' Cane (Pep Club), Scholar's Bowl Academic Team, Skills USA, and the Spanish Club.
MHHSE also sponsors a majority of the athletic programs that are offered by TSSAA. Athletic programs include boy's football, boy's and girl's basketball, boy's and girl's soccer, baseball, softball, track, cross country, wrestling, golf, and tennis. Each athletic program is coached by a faculty member and several have parent booster organizations.
Unique Programs & Awards
MHHSE is very proud of the continued exceptional performance of its Freshman Academy. This small learning community staffed by some of the most innovative and experienced teachers has been instrumental in establishing a culture of academic excellence within the freshman class. Developing relationships with students and their parents, providing after school tutoring, and implementing uniform procedures for early intervention have created a close knit community of learners.
The impact of the Academy has been immediate and lasting. Freshman attendance has shown a steady increase over the last five years. Discipline referrals have declined during most years and the number of students failing one or more classes during their first semester continues to show improvement.
Always seeking to improve the culture of the Freshman Academy, teachers and administrations attended a three day "Capturing Kids Hearts" training program in the summer of 2008. The training provided teachers with the tools to develop safer and more self-managing classrooms. Emphasis was placed on improving attendance, decreasing delinquency and disruptive behavior, and transforming every classroom into a high-performing, learning community. The early success of Capturing Kid's Hearts resulted in a second training program for the sophomore teachers in the summer of 2009. It is our intention to offer this program to the Junior and Senior teachers in 2011 and 2012.
The importance of ACT scores for college admission and financial aide has increased dramatically during the last decade. Reliance on this test as a measure of academic achievement is evident in the language of the Tennessee Diploma Project.
In November 2005, MHHSE received federal recognition from the No Child Left Behind - Blue Ribbon Schools Program as one of only 39 high schools in the nation awarded the distinction of being a Blue Ribbon School. The tradition of academic excellence continues as MHHSE has received the prestigious U.S. News and World Report Bronze Medal for being one of America's Best High Schools. The nation's high schools are judged based on a wide range of performance indicators that illustrate the school is serving the interests of all students not just those that are college bound. MHHSE is one of the largest schools in Tennessee to be recognized for its educational excellence.
Beginning in the fall of 2011, a new course will be offered to students in the Health Care Career Academy entitled, Pharmacy Tech Certification. This is an online course to prepare students to take the Pharmacy Tech Certification Board exam. Students work through 5 sections and complete quizzes and tests over each section. Prerequisites for this class are Health Science and Medical Therapeutics. The course is currently being piloted with 9 students with a projected enrollment limited to 20 students.
The Work-Based Learning program allows students with special needs to participate in on-the-job training during school hours. This program is included in the student's IEP as part of their transition plan. Students have various opportunities available for employment in the community, which they may secure on their own or with the assistance of special education teachers Brian Hall and Charlene Davis. Students take the OASIS test and are interviewed by their supervisor to determine their vocational interests and goals. The outcome of the test and interview are used to match each student with a job site that will help to prepare them for gainful employment after graduation. Examples of student work through the program include custodial services at local elementary schools, automotive maintenance and repair at Advanced Auto Parts and the local Co-Op, customer service at grocery stores, and preparation and cleaning at local restaurants. The Work-Based Learning program gives students an opportunity to gain vocational and social skills and provides local businesses a chance to contribute to the success of our students as members of the wider community.
A Youth Leadership course is offered for sophomore and junior students. This course is designed to give students, who have demonstrated leadership abilities, the opportunity to learn more about their community, to more fully develop their leadership potential, and to be encouraged and equipped to assume leadership roles available to them in the future. Students must apply for this class by completing an application and interview process. A committee of teachers and community leaders then choose the top 15 applicants based upon GPA, academic performance, and school attendance.
MHHSE was awarded a Perkins IV Grant to develop and implement a new course called Biofuels Technology. Designated as a research course, Biofuels brings academic and vocational students together in a unique setting that combines course work, original research, and applied learning. Students actively engage in the production of biofuels from different feed stocks and use them in stationary and mobile engines. Student research projects were entered into the Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair (SASEF) in 2009. Out of more than 325 junior and senior division research projects, the Biofuels students placed 3rd, 4th, and 5th. The current Biofuels class has completed eight research projects for the 2010 science fair. An open house displaying the research projects and the equipment used to test different fuels is planned for the last week in April.