Our School

    Welcome to the 2019-20 school year at West Jackson Elementary School! Our students are part of the path that includes West Jackson Middle School and Jackson County Comprehensive High School and we are grateful to be a part of an amazing Panther community!

    As I begin my third year at West Jackson, I want to introduce myself to any families who may be new to WJES. I have been in education for 21 years and have been fortunate to spend the last 12 of those years in the Jackson County School System. I have served as a K-5 teacher, coach, assistant principal, curriculum director, and most recently, principal within our school system.  I am most honored to have the opportunity to serve the students and families at WJES and look forward to another fantastic year ahead!

    At WJES, we remain steadfast to our work in pairing innovation with instructional best practices that engage students in deeper levels of thinking, inquiry, and learning.  We continue to plan high quality academic and STEAM focused learning experiences that inspire curiosity and challenge students to think critically, collaborate, and engage in high levels of thinking, as they are active participants in their learning.  

    This year, while we will continue our STEAM journey, we will embrace the theme, Dream Big!  Aim High! We will push students to connect their learning to the world around them, by drawing in partnerships, field trips, and opportunities to engage in hands-on experiences through our gardens, aquaponics, our nature trail, agriculture, environmental projects, robotics, and arts integration.  Simultaneously, we will continue to provide the highest quality academic experiences, with a focus on rich math and literacy instruction.

    I’d like to share a few of our WJES commitments and core beliefs:

    • The West Jackson faculty and staff commit to providing the highest quality educational experience in a safe, nurturing environment for every student.
    • We believe that communication is the key to a successful organization, and we commit to join with you in a partnership that supports and challenges your student to grow and reach meaningful goals.
    • We will do whatever it takes to engage, inspire, and support students to reach their full potential and to prepare our students for amazing futures.

    I know you will find the West Jackson staff to be exceptional in providing instruction and support.  Because we want the best for every student, we will encourage and expect students to stretch themselves to grow, and we will do everything we can to inspire and support them.  At WJES, we embrace a growth mindset that fosters joy, creativity, and critical thinking, which we believe are cornerstones of learning.

    We all want the very best for every student!   Your concerns, comments, and ideas are appreciated and respected.  You may contact me at (706)654-2044 or by e-mail at ahardegree@jcss.us.  Throughout the year, we invite you to help us celebrate your student’s success and to partner with us to create a truly remarkable and joyous year of growth!  


    Amity Hardegree


    I am looking forward to another great year at West Jackson Elementary, serving as one of the Assistant Principals.  I have been in education for fourteen years, and I have spent all fourteen years in the Jackson County School System.  I taught fifth grade for six years at South Jackson Elementary, I was an Assistant Principal at Gum Springs Elementary, and I was the Assistant Principal at North Jackson Elementary.  I obtained a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Georgia, a Specialist’s degree in Educational Administration and Supervision from Lincoln Memorial University, and a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership from Liberty University.

    West Jackson is a great place to be!  Our school provides a rigorous standards-based curriculum tailored to meet the needs of individual children.  We want our students to experience success — a success that comes from the accomplishment of high expectations. At the same time, we want to foster a positive feeling about school, making the time spent at West Jackson Elementary School an enjoyable, exciting experience.

    I am looking forward to working with each of you and developing a positive relationship with you and your child.  If I can help you in any way, please feel free to come by the school, contact me by phone at (706) 654-2044, or email me at krodenroth@jcss.us.

    Karen Rodenroth

    I am looking forward to working with this awesome faculty and staff at West Jackson Elementary School for the fourth year. This is starting my 23rd year in education, and I have spent fourteen of those years in the Jackson County School System. I received a BS in Biology, my teaching certificate, and a Master’s Degree in Education from North Georgia College. I received a Specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from Lincoln Memorial University. I taught eighth-grade science and social studies in Hall County before moving to West Jackson Middle School as an assistant principal. After spending seven wonderful years at WJMS, I moved to Maysville Elementary School, where I was the principal for three years. I serve in two different capacities in the JCSS. I serve as Assistant Principal at WJES and work with the Jackson Co. Central Office with Student Support Services.

    In 2015, West Jackson Elementary School started as a collaboration of two schools but has melded into ONE fantastic school where we focus on our students in the present while preparing them for the future as lifelong learners. We will continue to rise to high expectations as we continue the story of WJES. Providing academic rigor and building strong relationships will always be our focus. Our goal is to create life-long learners by allowing students to have a voice in their academic search.

    I will always believe that THIS SCHOOL BELONGS TO ALL OF US! We value the community’s input and will strive to build and foster positive relationships, which in turn will allow us to put our students first. If I can ever be of service to you, please do not hesitate to contact me by phone (706-654-2044) or by email (jcanupp@jcss.us).

    John Canupp

    I am excited to welcome you to another fantastic year at West Jackson Elementary. I currently serve in dual roles, one being instructional coach and the other being half-time assistant principal. I have worked in education for  ? years.   I have been in Jackson County for three years and feel honored to be part of the Jackson County School District journey. All three of my years in Jackson County have been at West Jackson Elementary where we believe in creating amazing learning experiences enabling each child to reach their fullest potential. Please reach out to me by phone (706 654-2044) or email (lking@jcss.us) if I can support you or your child as they travel the West Jackson path to excellence.


    Lori King


    Address: 391 East Jefferson Street
                        Hoschton, Georgia 30548
    Phone: 706-654-2044
    School hours: 7:40 am – 2:25 pm
    Doors open for students at 7:15 am

    Printable School-Year Calendars


    DEPARTMENTS & PROGRAMS  – Grade levels, Media Center and Support Staff

    STAFF DIRECTORY AND TEACHER WEBSITES – Please choose WJES from the drop-down list of locations to see just those teachers at our school. You also can search the list by teacher name, position and/or department.


    CLUBS – coming soon

    PARTNERS IN EDUCATION – coming soon


    Guidelines: Engaging with JCSS Social Media