Our District

JCSS Central Office building

Student success through leadership, character and performance.

Look for quick links for parents and students, staff and potential staff, and community members and partners on our home pageClick on the tabs below for the offices within our District Administration, Human Resources, Teaching & Learning, and Operations departments.

Click here for a copy of our organization chart you can view, download or print (revised 8/14/2017).

Click here for links to key documents, including our Consolidated Needs Assessment, our District Improvement Plan, and our Family Engagement Plan.

Jackson County School System Central Office is located at 1660 Winder Highway – Jefferson, GA 30549 – adjacent to the Jackson County High School campus.
Phone: 706-367-5151  –  Fax: 706-367-9768

Choose success @ JCSS!

The Jackson County School System serves approximately 8,000 students in six elementary schools, two middle schools, and two high schools. We are committed to promoting student success through leadership, character, and performance from Pre-K through 12th grade.

Click the tabs above for a list of and links to the offices within each part of our organization; click the highlighted links below for more information about …

    • Administration – Our school system leaders, chief financial officer, communications office, and student services (social work, nursing and counselors’ services, as well as school psychologists).
    • Human Resources – The starting point for those interested in beginning or advancing a career in service to the students of Jackson County.
    • Teaching & Learning – Addresses all aspects of our work with students, including registration, curriculum, special education services, state and federal programs, personalized learning & innovation, technology, student data management, and testing.
    • Finance and Operations – The Finance Office manages all aspects of JCSS’s financial activities. Operations includes school nutrition, transportation, and facilities.

Hurricane Shoals Park - Jackson County, Ga.

Hurricane Shoals Park – Jackson County, Ga.

Education has a long history in Jackson County, which was founded in 1796 in a split from Franklin County. Jackson County was the original home of the University of Georgia — classes began before Clarke County was officially carved out of Jackson County in 1801. There is a school listed as part of the settlement at Hurricane Shoals in 1801, and as many as 247 schools are recorded in the county’s history. And, according to the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce, Harmony Grove Female Academy, chartered in 1824, was the first school for girls chartered in the state.

Today, JCSS is led by Dr. April Howard, superintendent of schools. The assistant superintendent for teaching and learning is Mr. Todd Nickelsen. The assistant superintendent for operations is Mr. Ted Gilbert. Ms. Annah Dodge, CPA, CGFM, is chief financial officer. Dr. Selena Blankenship is the director of human resources.

Our faculty and staff are committed to offering a challenging and rigorous educational experience for all students in a safe and caring learning environment.

The members of our Board of Education are elected from five districts across the county and serve staggered, four-year terms. Click here for the latest update to our district’s strategic plan.

Administration includes the leadership team, human resources, student services, and communications. 

  • Click on the gold links below to reach individual offices or departments.
  • Click here for a more detailed description of our Administration structure and our organization chart.
  • Click here for a copy of our organization chart you can view, download or print (revised August 14, 2017).
  • Click here for the page that presents an overview of our school system.
Dr. April Howard, Superintendent
Email: ahoward@jcss.us   –   Phone: 706-367-5151   –   FAX: 706-367-9768

Amanda Hewell, Executive Assistant
ahewell@jcss.us   –   706-367-5151 ext. 17111

Todd Nickelsen
Todd Nickelsen

Assistant Superintendent
Teaching & Learning

ext. 17120

Ted Gilbert, Assistant Superintendent for Operations
Ted Gilbert

Assistant Superintendent

ext. 17157

Annah Dodge
Annah Dodge

Chief Financial Officer

ext. 17133

Dr. Selena Blankenship, JCSS HR Director

Dr. Selena Blankenship

706-367-5151 ext. 1712

Karen Bridgeman, JCSS Communications Coordinator

Karen Bridgeman, Coordinator

706-367-5151 ext. 17110
Direct: 706-367-3997
Cell: 706-340-4435


School Psychologists
Nursing Services
Social Work Services
Counselor Services

Dr. Selena Blankenship, JCSS HR Director

Dr. Selena Blankenship

ext. 17122
Email: sblankenship@jcss.us

Michelle Bowen
HR Assistant

Dr. Selena S. Blankenship joined the Jackson County School System in July 2016 and currently serves as the director of human resources. Dr. Blankenship is proud to be a “Triple Dawg,” having earned her bachelor’s, master’s and Ph.D. from the University of Georgia, where she serves as a member of the College of Education’s Alumni Board. She began her career as a language arts teacher in South Georgia before returning to the Athens area in 2002. Since 2008, Dr. Blankenship has served in various leadership roles at the middle and high school levels, most recently serving five years as the principal of Hilsman Middle School, an International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme World School.

Join us and choose success @ JCSS!

The Jackson County School System is working every day to provide a remarkable learning experience for approximately 8,000 students in six elementary schools, two middle schools, and two high schools. We value innovation, personalization, academic rigor, and positive relationships.

Apply with JCSS at https://www.applitrack.com/jacksoncounty/onlineapp/Jackson County is located approximately an hour northeast of Atlanta along I-85 and just 25 minutes from  the music and arts scene in Athens. We enjoy convenient access to Lake Hartwell, Lake Lanier, and Braselton’s Chateau Elan Resort, all while enjoying the relaxed pace of small town life.

See a complete list of vacancies and find an online application by visiting  www.applitrack.com/jacksoncounty/onlineapp/.

Learn more about our benefits by visiting www.myjacksonbenefits.com/.

Substitute teachers, paraprofessionals, and custodians
ESS logo

ESS logo

JCSS partners with ESS, an educational management service, in hiring for substitute teachers, paraprofessionals, and custodians. Apply online at ESS.com or contact Taylor Jackson by calling 706-424-7289 or emailing TJackson@ESS.com.



  • Click here for a copy of our organization chart you can view, download or print (revised August 14, 2017).
  • Click here for the page that presents an overview of our school system.


More information

  • Click here for the JCSS Certified Teacher Salary Schedule (5/13/19).
  • Click here for the JCSS Non-Teaching Salary Schedule (5/13/19).
  • Click here for the JCSS Non-Teaching Salary Schedule – grade and range (5/13/19).
  • Links to our job descriptions – coming soon!


Current employees: Click here to log in to the payroll and benefits portal. Access information on discounts from our community partners for current employees with the links below:


Key staff

Michelle Bowen – HR Professional for Recruitment and Hiring
mbowen@jcss.us — Phone: 706-367-5151, ext. 17151

Shannon Kendrix – Benefits Specialist
skendrix@jcss.us — Phone: 706-367-5151, ext. 17105

Megan Perry – HR Professional for Absence/Time Management, Payroll  Support
mperry@jcss.us — Phone: 706-367-5151, ext. 17116

Debbie Gammon – Front Desk – HR Professional for Substitutes/Hourly Personnel
dgammon@jcss.us — Phone: 706-367-5151, ext. 17101

The Jackson County School System does not and will not discriminate based on race, color, national origin, immigration, or any other legally protected status in its educational programs, activities or employment practices.

Teaching & Learning deals with all aspects of our work with students, including special education; personalized learning & innovation, which works closely with the technology office and our content specialists; school improvement and accountability (including registration, student data management, testing, and state and federal programs); and career, technical, and agricultural education (CTAE) and work-based learning (WBL). 

Todd Nickelsen
Todd Nickelsen, Assistant Superintendent for Teaching & Learning
tnickelsen@jcss.us       706-367-5151, ext. 17120

Brenda Williams, Administrative Assistant
706-367-5151, ext. 17150

Mr. Troy Johnson

Troy Johnson, Director       tjohnson@jcss.us
PHONE: 706-367-5151   FAX: 706-367-9457

Registration: Martha Wilson & Teresa Dearman
Assessment: Martha Wilson & Teresa Dearman
Student Information System: Martha Wilson & Teresa Dearman
State Pre-K Program: Linda Bell
Federal Programs – Title I: Linda Bell

Jan NeSmith

Jan NeSmith, Director       jnesmith@jcss.us
PHONE: 706-367-5151   FAX 706-367-9457

Elementary School Coordinator: Tammy Simpson-Shirley
Secondary School Coordinator: Becky Edge

Todd Schultz
Cat Flippen


Todd Shultz
PHONE: 706-367-5151 ext 22801
FAX: 706-367-9457


Cat Flippen
PHONE: 706-367-5151 ext. 17134
FAX: 706-367-9457

Laura Boswell
Michael Summer


Laura Boswell
PHONE: 706-367-5151 ext. 13026
FAX: 706-367-9457


Michael Summer
PHONE: 706-367-5151 ext. 22906
FAX: 706-367-9457

Deborah Riddleberger


Deborah Riddleberger
PHONE: 706-367-5151 ext. 17121
FAX: 706-367-9457

Image Coming Soon


Amy Godfrey
PHONE: 706-367-5151 ext. 17155
FAX: 706-367-9457

Katie Warwick


Dr. Katie Warwick
PHONE: 706-367-5151 ext. 17138
FAX: 706-367-9457

Annah Dodge
Annah Dodge, CPA, CGFM, Chief Financial Officer
adodge@jcss.us       706-367-5151, ext. 17133


Click here for our Chief Financial Officer
and the Finance Department.

OPERATIONS includes school nutrition/food service, transportation, and plant services/facilities. Click on the gold links below to reach individual offices in Operations.

  • Click here for a more detailed description of Operations offices.
  • Click here to return to the overview of our school system.
  • Click here for a copy of our organization chart you can view, download or print (revised August 14, 2017).
Ted Gilbert, Assistant Superintendent for Operations
Ted Gilbert, Assistant Superintendent for Operations
tgilbert@jcss.us       706-367-5151, ext. 17157

Sheila Briggs, Executive Assistant
706-367-5151, ext. 17106

Dr. Debra Morris

Dr. Debra Morris, Director



David Farmer

David Farmer, Director



Josh Patton

Josh Patton,