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Jackson County Public Schools

Hear from Dawn Gilchrist about the big picture at Jackson County Schools.

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Meet Dawn Gilchrist

Teacher Ambassador

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I teach at Jackson Community School because we provide a loving and safe place for students whose lives have been difficult. It is wonderful to work here because there is no other place where I can teach this kind of population in an environment where everyone—from the principal to my fellow teachers—sees that the big picture is what matters for these students if we want to help them improve their lives.


  • 9-12th Grade English Teacher



    • Jackson County School, District, Region Teacher of the Year, 2019-2020
    • Swain County School, District, Region Teacher of the Year, 2000
    • National NCTE/Mailer Teacher Writing Award, 2011
    • Founder Speechless, Student Writing Anthology, 1999
    • Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School, STAR Teacher Award 1994

    Teacher Certification Program

    Why I Teach

    I teach because the public school classroom is the best place to effect change, the best place to create in the young the belief that they deserve a place at the human table, and the best place to convey the knowledge that the gift of consciousness carries with it great responsibilities and great joy.

    Jackson County Public Schools by the numbers

    • 325

      Dedicated Teachers

    • 3,800

      Engaged Learners

    About Jackson County Public Schools

    • About

      Jackson County is located in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina, 48 miles west of Asheville, NC and 18 miles east of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Cherokee, NC. Our current population is around 40,000 and is diverse in age and ethnicity, with about 10% Native American.

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