DECA loses longtime adviser

Published 10:54 pm Friday, July 15, 2011

FRANKLIN—After 25 years, Franklin High School teacher Sandy Atkinson is handing over the reins of one of the school’s most successful clubs.

Franklin High’s marketing teacher since 1985, Atkinson will become the city schools’ lead teacher next year. The move forces her to give up leadership of the DECA program, which has won many awards over the years.

“It was not an easy decision,” she said. “It’s very bittersweet.”

“She’s an excellent teacher,” said FHS Assistant Principal Travis Felts. “The DECA program is one of the best in the state. This is going to be a big change for the DECA program.”

The 75-member club is one of the biggest at the school. It has received the top Gold Award for 15 consecutive years for community service. The club also been recognized for its membership numbers.

DECA has helped the Downtown Franklin Association, Franklin-Southampton Chamber of Commerce with its Business Expo and with programs at the Ruth Camp Campbell Memorial Branch library in Franklin.

“The kids really enjoy giving back to the community,” Atkinson said. “They’re the ones who’ve said ‘we’re going to be this active,’ not me.”

Lead teachers mentor other teachers and work with them on curriculum, instruction and standardized testing.