Cortney Cooper Slaughter named Alabama’s top assistant principal

MADISON – Madison native Cortney Cooper Slaughter has been honored as National Outstanding Assistant Principal Award for the State of Alabama.

For three years, Slaughter has served as Assistant Principal at Fultondale Elementary School. The Alabama Association of Elementary School Administrators presented the award to Slaughter. The National Association of Elementary School Principals sponsored the award program.

Previously, Slaughter taught physical education at Concord Elementary School for seven years.

In 2007, Slaughter earned a bachelor’s degree in education at Athens State University. She has earned a master’s degree and education specialist degree in instructional leadership at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Slaughter plans to complete a doctorate’s degree in instructional leadership from Samford University in December.

At Fultondale, Cortney advocates communication. “When students write me letters as a class or individually, I always take time to write them back individually. If a class puts 23 letters in my mailbox, I write 23 letters back to them,” Slaughter said.

“My drive to be where I am at today in my career started with my professor Dr. Wendy Cowan at Athens State University. She encouraged me, as a single mom, to not hide my story but use it to impact others’ lives throughout my journey. I still have a card in my office that she gave me at graduation,” Slaughter said.

Her first teaching assignment was in Concord, Ala. “Moving away from my family as a single mom was not always easy, but it was what I had to do for Coda … So many people in Concord took us in as family and led the path to success,” she said.

In addition, Slaughter acknowledges mentorship from Fultondale Principal Frances R. Finney, who “allowed me to do more than ‘Books, Butts and Buses’ and learn about finance, (planning) meetings and master schedules”; Dr. Yancy Morris; Jefferson County Board of Education; and, at Bob Jones High School, math teacher David Carroll and cheerleading coach Shannon Pike Landman.

“My husband is Gavin Slaughter. We have a son named Coda, and he’s 12 years old. We also have a daughter named Saylor who just turned one,” Cortney said.

In Fultondale, Cortney has volunteered in many capacities including veterans’ observances, tornado relief and civic fundraisers.

While she uses most free time in dissertation writing, Cortney enjoys time with her family riding Sea Doos at Smith Lake, fishing and riding her paddleboard. “My life is built around my family and doing what is best for them.”

Her parents are Richard and Gail Cooper of Madison.

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