KNOXVILLE — After spending much of his life in the Bearden community and Bearden High School, Jack Tate is moving on.
But this veteran teacher/coach isn’t going too far down the road.
Tate, a 1978 graduate of BHS, returned to his alma mater after getting his college degree at the University of Tennessee.
While associated with Knoxville City and Knox County Schools for four decades, all of that time he’s been in Bearden (starting at Bearden Middle School).
But now Tate is off to rival Farragut High School beginning with the 2020-21 school year, where he’ll teach part-time and serve as sports information director. “It’s hard to leave Bearden,” said Tate, who first enrolled at BHS in 1975.
He announced his move on Twitter Tuesday, March 31, thanking students, faculty and administrators “for a great four decades.”
Officially retiring from Knox County Schools as a full-time teacher May 24, 2019, who taught film studies as well as business and personal finance, Tate officially has served as Bearden’s SID since retiring from coaching baseball about four years ago.
As baseball head coach, he led the 2012 Bulldogs to a Class AAA state runner-up finish.
Tate returned to BHS this school year to teach a pair of film studies classes and continue his SID duties. He will remain at BHS for the rest of the academic year.
“He’ll be great for our school, both academically and athletically,” Farragut athletic director Donald Dodgen said.
Tate has connections at FHS.
“I’m going to Farragut to be with (principal) Dr. (John) Bartlett again,” he said. “He was principal at Bearden for 10 years. He’s a great guy and I’ve always had great respect for him.”
“Jack’s a great man, Does a good job in the classroom and obviously does a great job with kids,” Bartlett said. “We’re lucky to have him at Farragut High School.”
He also has a special Bulldogs connection with Admirals baseball head coach Matt Buckner.
“Matt Buckner, the baseball coach over there, coached at Bearden, and I was his assistant for six years,” said Tate, who became Bearden head coach when Buckner came to FHS in 2010.
“I have a good relationship with Jack, so I’m happy he’s coming,” Buckner said. “The kids like Jack. He’s a really good man.”
Lady Ads’ softball head coach Nick Green “played baseball for me (at BHS),” Tate said.