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ETEC: Martin McDonald, STEM at Oak Ridge High School
February 14, 2020 @ 7:30 am - 8:30 am
Oak Ridge High School
Martin McDonald was born and raised in Knoxville Tennessee. His father was a division director at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in the Measurement and Instrumentation Division. Mr. McDonald attended the University of Tennessee, Knoxville for his undergraduate and earned a B.S. in History and continued on to earn a M.S. in Education. He worked at both Tennessee School for the Deaf and Maryville High School before leaving for North Carolina in 2000.
While in North Carolina he taught at Smith High School in Greensboro. Smith High School was a high poverty; high needs inner city school that had over 44 different nationalities within its student body. Mr. McDonald wrote an application to create an International Baccalaureate program at the school to increase the academic rigor and readiness of the students. He taught a History of the Americas course and an epistemology course called Theories of Knowledge. He would later go on to become the I.B. Coordinator for the building. Mr. McDonald was selected into an M.S.A. Cohort by the district looking to grow instructionally strong teacher leaders into school administrators. He earned a second Master’s degree in School Administration from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. He was hired as an assistant principal at Ragsdale High School in Jamestown North Carolina where he worked for five years before being hired as the principal of Jordan-Matthews High School in Siler City, North Carolina.
Jordan-Matthews was another high poverty, high needs, highly diverse school. While there his school was ranked as the 12th and 4th best school in the state by US News and World Reports. He oversaw the implementation of a one to one lap top program, the expansion of dual enrollment courses for high school and college credits, the tripling of the AP offerings and enrollment numbers, the first comprehensive high school in the state to offer a Dual Language program, and the only school in the state to have a dual enrollment program with an international university for students to receive college credits while in high school. He oversaw a rise in graduation rate of 28 points and his school was named the North Carolina School of Distinction for 2015 for having the highest growth scores in the state.
Mr. McDonald is married to Kendra McDonald and has two school aged children, Lilly and Skyler McDonald.