Gragg, Duke named assistant principals at East, West Elementary

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Nic Gragg, left, has been named assistant principal at East Elementary, while Tommy Duke, right, has been named assistant principal at West Elementary. (Christy Perry for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The Cullman City School Board announced a couple of big personnel changes and a pay increase for substitute teachers at Tuesday morning’s meeting. Nic Gragg, who has been an assistant principal at East and West Elementary, will now be the full-time assistant principal at East Elementary. Tommy Duke, who has served as assistant principal at Cullman Middle School, will be at West Elementary School in the assistant principal role. Chad Shannon will take Duke’s place at the middle school.

Gragg has been with the Cullman City School system since 2006. He has been going back and forth between the two elementary schools for the past three-and-a-half years and said he is happy to be at East Elementary full-time.

Shared Gragg, “He (Duke) and I have worked together for almost 10 years. We’ve been good friends since college and started at Cullman City Schools. I’m super excited that he’s going to be across town in the same role as me. We work great together; we’ve coached together and had a lot of laughs together. We are looking forward to working in the same role and sharing and collaborating.”

Duke interned with Cullman City Schools before being officially hired for the 2005-2006 school year. He has been at Cullman Middle School for the past 15 years and served as assistant principal for the past six years.

“I was looking to get more experience and to further my resume and career,” said Duke. “I’ve been at the middle school for 15 years so just a different outlook on things and new opportunities. I know Nic is going to do a great job at East and I’m fired up about being at West.”

Duke did admit, “It’s going to be tough leaving CMS.”

The Cullman City School Board also approved an increase in pay for substitute teachers. Substitute pay had been $60/day but will now be $75/day.

Superintendent Dr. Susan Patterson said of the increase, “It’s been a long time coming to increase our substitute pay. We’re glad to be able to do that this year. We know they are very valuable to us and sometimes its hard to get people with the amount they are paid, so maybe this will help just a little bit.”

The Cullman City School Board will hold its first budget hearing for the FY2020 Tuesday, Aug. 20 at 4 p.m. followed by a regular board meeting at 5 in the central office board room.

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Christy Perry

christy@cullmantribune.com