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James St. John Staff Photo
Mr.  James  D  St. John
Instructional Coordinator/Assistant Principal
Phone Icon 931-723-4579

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B.S., Marketing Education Secondary 1984 MTSU

M.A., Administration and Supervision K-12  1987 TN Tech

Ed.S., Curriculum and Supervision 2009 MTSU


F.C. Boyd, Sr. Christian School, McMinnville, Warren County, TN  1984-1987

North Elementary, Altamont, Grundy County, TN  1987-1988

East Coffee Elementary, Manchester, Coffee County TN  1988-present


       I was born in 1960. My parents were Charles D. St. John and Dorothy Marie Glenn St. John.  I have 1 sister, Carol St. John Rigsby and 1 brother, Charles Glen St. John, of which I am the youngest.   I was blessed by being raised and able to live on a dairy/row crop farm and wish that all children could experience the life of a farm family.  I worked our farm until 2005 when it became too much between it and teaching.  I am partial to International Harvester farm equipment for a couple of reasons.  The first is that was all we ever used on our farm.  The second reason is that my parents bought the International Harvester dealership in McMinnville in 1969 and were in business for 12 years.

        I am married to Cathy Lowe St. John, my childhood sweetheart from East Coffee.  We attend church at Pleasant Knoll church of Christ which is located in the Ninth Model community.

       I went to school at East Coffee from 1966 through 1972, Coffee County Junior High (now middle school) 1972-1975, the old Central High School (where the Justice Center is now located) 1975-1976, and then the present Central High School from 1976-1978.  I am very proud of my East Coffee/Coffee County heritage.

       Upon graduation in 1978 from CHS, I was uncertain as to what I wanted to do with my life.  Teaching had always been in my heart.  I had a grandfather who was an educator, Adam Delter St. John, who spent 51 years of his life in this career.  That was a great influence to me.  But I wanted to be sure that a career in business was to be ruled out.  I attended the Technical-Vocational School in McMinnville and chose a business program of study.  I enjoyed working with accounting and the business end of office work.  So for 1 year, I worked at our Tractor Supply Store which was located beside St. John Equipment.  Since I had a taste of the business world, I knew it was time to check out education.

       When the economy began to decline in the late 70's, I realized that I might want to try college and look into a teaching career.  I began my college career in 1979 at Freed-Hardeman College in Henderson, TN majoring in Business Education.  Freed-Hardeman was about 30 minutes from Jackson, TN, making it about 3 hours and 45 minutes from home.  Due to rising tuition costs and distance, (I came home just about every weekend suffering from home sickness)  I transferred to MTSU in Murfreesboro in 1980.  I also changed my major to Music Education which was my first choice of academics to teach.  I also married Cathy Sue Lowe in 1980.

       I enjoyed my 3 years in the music program and was approaching my senior year at MTSU.  It was in 1983 that education saw a downward spiral in funds and when money becomes scarce, it is the music and art programs that seem to be cut first.  So, when I saw that many of these teachers were being laid off, I changed back to a business education field, particularly Marketing Education.  The emphasis was to be secondary.

     I graduated in 1984 with a B.S. in Marketing Education to teach High School Distributive Education, but instead I began work at F.C. Boyd, Sr. Christian School in McMinnville, TN teaching music, art, and library as Mr. Itinerant.  The next year I began my graduate college work on adding my elementary endorsement.  I then served as principal the second year.  Finally in year 3 I taught 6th grade. 

      After my 3 years at Boyd, I went to public schools and began this part of my teaching career in Altamont at North Elementary, teaching grades 6-8 Math, Health, and Science.  I was there for 1 year. 

        In 1988, I was fortunate to be hired by the Coffee County School System.  I was placed at East Coffee teaching 6th grade.  I have been here since.  In 2009, I completed my Ed.S. from MTSU in Curriculum and Supervision.  I am presently serving as the Assistant Principal/Instructional Coordinator here at East Coffee.

As I said previously, I am very proud of my East Coffee and Coffee County heritage.



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